Link libraries by full path even in implicit directories.
CMP0003 was introduced with the intention of always
linking library files by full path when a full path is given to the
target_link_libraries() command. However, on some platforms
(e.g. HP-UX) the compiler front-end adds alternative library search paths
for the current architecture (e.g.
/usr/lib/<arch> has alternatives
to libraries in
/usr/lib for the current architecture).
On such platforms the
find_library() may find a library such as
/usr/lib/libfoo.so that does not belong to the current architecture.
Prior to policy
CMP0003 projects would still build in such
cases because the incorrect library path would be converted to
on the link line and the linker would find the proper library in the
arch-specific search path provided by the compiler front-end implicitly.
At the time we chose to remain compatible with such projects by always
converting library files found in implicit link directories to
flags to ask the linker to search for them. This approach allowed existing
projects to continue to build while still linking to libraries outside
implicit link directories via full path (such as those in the build tree).
CMake does allow projects to override this behavior by using an
IMPORTED library target with its
IMPORTED_LOCATION property set to the desired full path to
a library file. In fact, many Find Modules are learning to provide
Imported Targets instead of just the traditional
variable listing library files. However, this makes the link line
generated for a library found by a Find Module depend on whether it
is linked through an imported target or not, which is inconsistent.
Furthermore, this behavior has been a source of confusion because the
generated link line for a library file depends on its location. It is
also problematic for projects trying to link statically because flags
-Wl,-Bstatic -lfoo -Wl,-Bdynamic may be used to help the linker
libfoo.a instead of
libfoo.so but then leak dynamic linking
to following libraries. (See the
target property for a solution typically used for that problem.)
When the special case for libraries in implicit link directories was first
introduced the list of implicit link directories was simply hard-coded
/usr/lib, and a few others). Since that time, CMake
has learned to detect the implicit link directories used by the compiler
front-end. If necessary, the
find_library() command could be
taught to use this information to help find libraries of the proper
For these reasons, CMake 3.3 and above prefer to drop the special case
and link libraries by full path even when they are in implicit link
CMP0060 provides compatibility for existing
The OLD behavior for this policy is to ask the linker to search for libraries whose full paths are known to be in implicit link directories. The NEW behavior for this policy is to link libraries by full path even if they are in implicit link directories.
This policy was introduced in CMake version 3.3. Unlike most policies,
CMake version 3.7.1 does not warn by default when this policy
is not set and simply uses OLD behavior. See documentation of the
variable to control the warning.
OLD behavior of a policy is
deprecated by definition
and may be removed in a future version of CMake.