Linux – Makefiles with source files in different directories


I have a project where the directory structure is like this:

              |               |                |
            part1/          part2/           part3/
              |               |                |
       +------+-----+     +---+----+       +---+-----+
       |      |     |     |        |       |         |
     data/   src/  inc/  src/     inc/   src/       inc/

How should I write a makefile that would be in part/src (or wherever really) that could comple/link on the c/c++ source files in part?/src ?

Can I do something like
-I$projectroot/part1/src -I$projectroot/part1/inc -I$projectroot/part2/src …

If that would work, is there an easier way to do it. I've seen projects where there is a makefile in each of the corresponding part? folders. [in this post I used the question mark like in bash syntax]

Best Solution

The traditional way is to have a Makefile in each of the subdirectories (part1, part2, etc.) allowing you to build them independently. Further, have a Makefile in the root directory of the project which builds everything. The "root" Makefile would look something like the following:

    +$(MAKE) -C part1
    +$(MAKE) -C part2
    +$(MAKE) -C part3

Since each line in a make target is run in its own shell, there is no need to worry about traversing back up the directory tree or to other directories.

I suggest taking a look at the GNU make manual section 5.7; it is very helpful.