Symbian Developer Library


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How to use the Symbian build process

The build process provides a consistent interface for all Symbian build activities. To build a component you will need the following files:

The tools used to process these files include bldmake, abld and (usually not directly) makmake. The actual process is detailed below.

Note that the GUI tool MEAD, with access to abld and bldmake functionality, provides an alternative method to using this building process. See The application development wizard.

Building from the command line

The procedure below summarises the build process.

  1. Create a project specification, or mmp file.

  2. Create a bldmake component definition file (bld.inf). In many cases this will specify a single project mmp file.

  3. Run bldmake from the directory where the bld.inf file is located:

    > bldmake bldfiles

    This creates the abld.bat batch file.

  4. Use abld build to build the project.

    abld calls nmake on the appropriate .make files, calls the resource compiler to create the resource file, and may call bmconv to create a multibitmap icon file and aiftool to create an application information file.

Generally, for any component, the minimal sequence of actions and commands needed to build the component are as follows:

Build process

Build process

See also

Using abld

Using bldmake


Building from the IDE

You can build applications for the Emulator (WINS platform) from within the Microsoft Visual C++ 6 IDE. To do this, define a bld.inf file and a .mmp file, and run bldmake bldfiles as described. Then to generate the IDE workspace, use:

> abld makefile vc6

The .dsw and .dsp files are created in the directory:


If later you change the .mmp file, you can use the same command to regenerate the MSVC6 workspace without the need to close the workspace first.

The project file has a special build step which invokes the resource compiler, so for projects that use resources, this does not need to be run separately.