Visual Studio 16 2019

Generates Visual Studio 16 (VS 2019) project files.

Project Types

Only Visual C++ and C# projects may be generated. Other types of projects (JavaScript, Powershell, Python, etc.) are not supported.

Instance Selection

VS 2019 supports multiple installations on the same machine. The CMAKE_GENERATOR_INSTANCE variable may be set as a cache entry containing the absolute path to a Visual Studio instance. If the value is not specified explicitly by the user or a toolchain file, CMake queries the Visual Studio Installer to locate VS instances, chooses one, and sets the variable as a cache entry to hold the value persistently.

When CMake first chooses an instance, if the VS160COMNTOOLS environment variable is set and points to the Common7/Tools directory within one of the instances, that instance will be used. Otherwise, if more than one instance is installed we do not define which one is chosen by default.

Platform Selection

The default target platform name (architecture) is that of the host and is provided in the CMAKE_VS_PLATFORM_NAME_DEFAULT variable.

The CMAKE_GENERATOR_PLATFORM variable may be set, perhaps via the cmake(1) -A option, to specify a target platform name (architecture). For example:

  • cmake -G "Visual Studio 16 2019" -A Win32

  • cmake -G "Visual Studio 16 2019" -A x64

  • cmake -G "Visual Studio 16 2019" -A ARM

  • cmake -G "Visual Studio 16 2019" -A ARM64

Toolset Selection

The v142 toolset that comes with Visual Studio 16 2019 is selected by default. The CMAKE_GENERATOR_TOOLSET option may be set, perhaps via the cmake(1) -T option, to specify another toolset.

For each toolset that comes with this version of Visual Studio, there are variants that are themselves compiled for 32-bit (x86) and 64-bit (x64) hosts (independent of the architecture they target). By default this generator uses the 64-bit variant on x64 hosts and the 32-bit variant otherwise. One may explicitly request use of either the 32-bit or 64-bit host tools by adding either host=x86 or host=x64 to the toolset specification. See the CMAKE_GENERATOR_TOOLSET variable for details.