List operations.


  list(LENGTH <list> <out-var>)
  list(GET <list> <element index> [<index> ...] <out-var>)
  list(JOIN <list> <glue> <out-var>)
  list(SUBLIST <list> <begin> <length> <out-var>)

  list(FIND <list> <value> <out-var>)

  list(APPEND <list> [<element>...])
  list(FILTER <list> {INCLUDE | EXCLUDE} REGEX <regex>)
  list(INSERT <list> <index> [<element>...])
  list(REMOVE_ITEM <list> <value>...)
  list(REMOVE_AT <list> <index>...)
  list(REMOVE_DUPLICATES <list>)
  list(TRANSFORM <list> <ACTION> [...])

  list(REVERSE <list>)
  list(SORT <list> [...])


The list subcommands APPEND, INSERT, FILTER, REMOVE_AT, REMOVE_ITEM, REMOVE_DUPLICATES, REVERSE and SORT may create new values for the list within the current CMake variable scope. Similar to the set() command, the LIST command creates new variable values in the current scope, even if the list itself is actually defined in a parent scope. To propagate the results of these operations upwards, use set() with PARENT_SCOPE, set() with CACHE INTERNAL, or some other means of value propagation.


A list in cmake is a ; separated group of strings. To create a list the set command can be used. For example, set(var a b c d e) creates a list with a;b;c;d;e, and set(var "a b c d e") creates a string or a list with one item in it. (Note macro arguments are not variables, and therefore cannot be used in LIST commands.)


When specifying index values, if <element index> is 0 or greater, it is indexed from the beginning of the list, with 0 representing the first list element. If <element index> is -1 or lesser, it is indexed from the end of the list, with -1 representing the last list element. Be careful when counting with negative indices: they do not start from 0. -0 is equivalent to 0, the first list element.


list(LENGTH <list> <output variable>)

Returns the list’s length.

list(GET <list> <element index> [<element index> ...] <output variable>)

Returns the list of elements specified by indices from the list.

list(JOIN <list> <glue> <output variable>)

Returns a string joining all list’s elements using the glue string. To join multiple strings, which are not part of a list, use JOIN operator from string() command.

list(SUBLIST <list> <begin> <length> <output variable>)

Returns a sublist of the given list. If <length> is 0, an empty list will be returned. If <length> is -1 or the list is smaller than <begin>+<length> then the remaining elements of the list starting at <begin> will be returned.


list(APPEND <list> [<element> ...])

Appends elements to the list.

list(FILTER <list> <INCLUDE|EXCLUDE> REGEX <regular_expression>)

Includes or removes items from the list that match the mode’s pattern. In REGEX mode, items will be matched against the given regular expression.

For more information on regular expressions see also the string() command.

list(INSERT <list> <element_index> <element> [<element> ...])

Inserts elements to the list to the specified location.

list(REMOVE_ITEM <list> <value> [<value> ...])

Removes the given items from the list.

list(REMOVE_AT <list> <index> [<index> ...])

Removes items at given indices from the list.


Removes duplicated items in the list.

                      [OUTPUT_VARIABLE <output variable>])

Transforms the list by applying an action to all or, by specifying a <SELECTOR>, to the selected elements of the list, storing result in-place or in the specified output variable.


TRANSFORM sub-command does not change the number of elements of the list. If a <SELECTOR> is specified, only some elements will be changed, the other ones will remain same as before the transformation.

<ACTION> specify the action to apply to the elements of list. The actions have exactly the same semantics as sub-commands of string() command.

The <ACTION> may be one of:

APPEND, PREPEND: Append, prepend specified value to each element of the list.

list(TRANSFORM <list> <APPEND|PREPEND> <value> ...)

TOUPPER, TOLOWER: Convert each element of the list to upper, lower characters.


STRIP: Remove leading and trailing spaces from each element of the list.

list(TRANSFORM <list> STRIP ...)

GENEX_STRIP: Strip any generator expressions from each element of the list.

list(TRANSFORM <list> GENEX_STRIP ...)

REPLACE: Match the regular expression as many times as possible and substitute the replacement expression for the match for each element of the list (Same semantic as REGEX REPLACE from string() command).

list(TRANSFORM <list> REPLACE <regular_expression>
                              <replace_expression> ...)

<SELECTOR> select which elements of the list will be transformed. Only one type of selector can be specified at a time.

The <SELECTOR> may be one of:

AT: Specify a list of indexes.

list(TRANSFORM <list> <ACTION> AT <index> [<index> ...] ...)

FOR: Specify a range with, optionally, an increment used to iterate over the range.

list(TRANSFORM <list> <ACTION> FOR <start> <stop> [<step>] ...)

REGEX: Specify a regular expression. Only elements matching the regular expression will be transformed.

list(TRANSFORM <list> <ACTION> REGEX <regular_expression> ...)


list(REVERSE <list>)

Reverses the contents of the list in-place.

list(SORT <list> [COMPARE <compare>] [CASE <case>] [ORDER <order>])

Sorts the list in-place alphabetically. Use the COMPARE keyword to select the comparison method for sorting. The <compare> option should be one of:

  • STRING: Sorts a list of strings alphabetically. This is the default behavior if the COMPARE option is not given.

  • FILE_BASENAME: Sorts a list of pathnames of files by their basenames.

Use the CASE keyword to select a case sensitive or case insensitive sort mode. The <case> option should be one of:

  • SENSITIVE: List items are sorted in a case-sensitive manner. This is the default behavior if the CASE option is not given.

  • INSENSITIVE: List items are sorted case insensitively. The order of items which differ only by upper/lowercase is not specified.

To control the sort order, the ORDER keyword can be given. The <order> option should be one of:

  • ASCENDING: Sorts the list in ascending order. This is the default behavior when the ORDER option is not given.

  • DESCENDING: Sorts the list in descending order.