If you use the IAR compiler/toolchain in your embedded projects, you can now do so in CLion. Collecting compiler information no longer fails, which means projects using the IAR toolchain load successfully and work in CLion.
A few things to note here:
PlatformIO is a new generation ecosystem that is gaining popularity quickly. To benefit from it in your embedded projects, take advantage of a new PlatformIO for CLion plugin, which:
And much more! Check the official documentation for details.
Code in CUDA C and C++, including all CUDA specific extensions, is now parsed and highlighted correctly. This means code navigation, code documentation, and other code assistance actions work in CUDA code. Additionally, CLion can complete angle brackets for kernel calls.
Let's clone the ClaraGenomicsAnalysis project from GitHub and check out what CLion is capable of in terms of CUDA support.
The New Project wizard in CLion has been updated with a new option to create CUDA projects – libraries or executables. When selected, it generates sample CMakeLists.txt and main.cu files for you.
New supported CUDA file extensions – .cu and .cuh – are available in the new C/C++ file creation dialog. And the list of possible targets to update in this dialog includes both general CMake and CUDA specific targets (created with
We have now made it possible to use clang-cl in CLion on Windows, with versions 8.0 and later supported.
You can install it from the LLVM website or along with the Visual Studio tools. When done, select the Visual Studio toolchain in CLion and point to clang-cl.exe in the toolchain settings.
The LLDB-based debugger for the Visual Studio C++ toolchain developed by JetBrains is now the default debugger for this toolchain. So you can start using it right away!
Note that bundled support for native visualizers should be enabled explicitly in
Settings | Build,
Execution, Deployment | Debugger Data Views | Enable NatVis renderers for LLDB.
Remote GDB Server and Embedded GDB Server configurations now work with custom targets. These configurations, which previously only worked with CMake targets, allow you to debug your application on a remote host or on the microcontroller from the CLion instance running on your local machine.
If you have already created these configurations, CLion 2020.1 will store previous Run/Debug
Configuration settings in the
projectFilesBackup directory in the project
folder and will notify you about this.
You can now use Path Variables and macros in the Program Arguments and Working Directory fields in the CMake, Custom Build, and Gradle Native Applications configurations. Macros help you get values for:
FilePrompt/Prompt macros can be used to show a file chooser dialog or string input dialog when running/debugging the configuration.
Path Variable can define a path to the library that is used widely in your projects but is located outside the project directory.
If you need to redirect input from a file to the stdin of your application, you can now do that. Use a new field in the configuration called Redirect input from. Enter:
CLion's Data Flow Analysis (DFA) does what a compiler doesn't normally do for you: It analyzes how the data flows through your code and detects potential issues based on the results. It catches conditions that are always false/true, endless loops, missing return statements, infinite recursion, and more. And with 2020.1, DFA has moved to the Clangd-based language engine to become more accurate and less heavy in terms of performance. This is still a work in progress, but some good results are already available!
A new mode, in which completion is fully provided by the Clangd-based language engine, is on
by default. This mode solves the prioritization and ordering issues that occurred when code
completion results from several engines were mixed. This behavior is controlled by the
Code Completion setting in
Settings | Languages &
Frameworks | C/C++ | Clangd.
Dozens of various fixes and enhancements make this new mode accurate and powerful.
Now, when you first open a project with a .clang-format config file in the project root, CLion will detect it and switch to ClangFormat for you automatically.
If you enable ClangFormat on a project that doesn't have a .clang-format config file, CLion will suggest creating one for you.
When a .clang-tidy config file is detected in the project, CLion now automatically turns
off the use of the IDE settings for Clang-Tidy. The behavior is controlled by
Prefer .clang-tidy files over IDE settings in
Settings | Editor |
Inspections | C/C++ | General | Clang-Tidy.
Struct member fields and class member fields now have separate naming settings. Check them out in
Settings | Editor | Code
Style | C/C++ | Naming Convention.
#pragma region and
#pragma endregion can be used in CLion for code
When calling the Change Signature refactoring (Ctrl+F6), CLion updates all the usages of the function. A new Default value field in the Change Signature dialog offers the ability to specify the value of the parameter to be used across all usages. Keep it blank to use the default value type as before.
The same logic and a new Default value field apply to the Create Parameter From Usage quick-fix and the Add Parameter to Constructor intention.
Quick Documentation – a universal tool to preview documentation and get information about function signature, inferred types, and macro replacement – is now available on mouseover.
It can be controlled by the setting Show quick documentation on mouse move in
Settings | Editor | Code Editing.
The default font in the editor has been changed to JetBrains Mono, a new open source font created by JetBrains. It's been designed specifically to make reading code easier.
A new default light theme – IntelliJ Light – is now the standard theme across all the different operating systems. Use View | Quick Switch Scheme | Theme to select a non-default theme if you wish.
With CLion 2020.1 you can split terminal sessions vertically or horizontally so that you can run them side by side. You can invoke the context menu from the Terminal to create, navigate, and close a split terminal session.
An updated tool window provides more space for the list of modified files and the diff. It also lets you add changes to a commit when they are ready, compose a commit message iteratively, and choose which of the staged changes go into which commit.
The new UI is enabled by default for new users; existing users can switch to it in
Settings | Version Control | Commit.
An updated, truly interactive dialog makes it possible to:
The Version Control tool window is now called the Git tool window, or Subversion/Mercurial/Perforce if you are using any of these instead of Git.
You no longer need to pre-install Git manually! When you open a project using Git or import one from the VCS, if you don't have Git on your machine, CLion will offer to download and install Git for you.
With improvements to LLDB support, IntelliJ Rust now properly renders enums and primitive types, and it also shows demangled function names in the call stack.
Another major update that has landed in the plugin is REPL integration. Invoke the console from Tools | Rust REPL and use it for prototyping and checking your code line by line. The integration provides syntax highlighting and code completion, along with some handy console actions: command history, soft wrap, quick scroll to end, and others.
On the language-support side, IntelliJ Rust now handles
impl blocks for type aliases.
Taking performance into account, we've only enabled this feature for types with a limited
number of aliases.
Other enhancements include highlighting for unused local variables, fixes in
support, and the new Lift return inspection.
Settings | Tools | SSH Configurations.
This release of CLion is quality-targeted with lots of performance improvements made throughout. The key enhancements affect code completion, the Rename refactoring, optimizations for the Building/Updating symbols step, and the elimination of UI freezes.
Clangd is now added to the list of code completion providers in CLion, which helped speed up the time for the first results to appear on many projects significantly. Check out the detailed performance metrics we’ve gathered.
The Rename refactoring in CLion is really powerful as it can rename not only code usages
but also usages in string literals and comments. If you still want to rename only code
usages, it’s now much faster as it can ask you to make this decision before the
actual search. (To use this, turn off
Settings | Editor | General | Refactorings | Enable in-place mode.)
Support for the new CMake File API lets CLion 2019.3 enable various CMake generators (requires CMake 3.15 or higher). Previously, only Makefiles were supported, now users can select Ninja, Xcode, Visual Studio, etc.
This works for all platforms, in remote mode, and with WSL.
To simplify the configuration process for your new CLion projects, you can now configure
one or more default CMake Profiles, which will be used for all your new projects. Use
File | Other Settings | Settings for New Projects…
If you want to debug an executable on a remote machine from a locally running CLion, you can now use the Remote GDB Server configuration. CLion will upload the executable and launch your program under gdbserver, so there’s no need to do it manually anymore.
In CLion 2019.3, the bundled LLDB on macOS and Linux was updated to v9.0. Besides this, a major clean-up was performed in the bundled LLDB pretty printers, fixing a whole set of related issues.
If you want to customize the GDB/LLDB debugger behavior on a particular project, you can now do so in CLion, as it supports reading the settings file from the project root directory.
One of the biggest features coming in C++20 is definitely Concepts. By collaborating with the author of Concepts support in Clang, we’ve brought Concepts to CLion 2019.3. The support covers not only code parsing and highlighting (which is done by the Clangd-based language engine), but also comes with:
To prevent situations where virtual functions access resources that are not yet initialized or have already been destroyed, CLion gets a new inspection which detects virtual functions called from constructors or destructors.
The Spell Checker is useful for keeping the code accurate and readable. CLion has had it for C/C++ code for a long time. In v2019.3 we’ve enabled it in CMake and Doxygen comments.
If you’ve ever asked the question, “Was this statement executed during the configuration run?”, that means you are looking for statements coverage measuring for your code. CLion 2019.3 has it thanks to the integration with llvm-cov/gcov tools.
You can get it for unit tests run or a regular configuration run. The results are available in the Coverage tool window or via a color indication in the editor’s left gutter.
A new action to switch between header/source files was added. It’s more accurate and quicker for many C/C++ cases than Go to Related Symbol.
If multiple options to navigate to are identified within 500 ms, CLion shows an interactive popup where new items are added and you can select where you want to navigate to.
There is also a built-in mechanism to remap the shortcut from Go to Related Symbol to this new action, should you want to.
In CLion, you can configure a set of formatting options and naming convention rules. Or, alternatively, you can inherit these settings from one of the predefined styles. In CLion 2019.3, we’ve added Microsoft’s predefined formatting and naming style to the list.
Windows Subsystem for Linux provides a convenient way to develop on Windows for Linux target platform. CLion natively supports the WSL environment and now comes with support for WSL version 2. The configuration process in CLion is completely the same for WSL v1 and WSL v2!
One of the biggest updates for IntelliJ Rust is the initial support of
cfg attributes. Now, the conditionally disabled blocks are grayed-out
and excluded from resolve and code analysis. Among the supported
The widely used quick-fix, Auto-import for unresolved symbols, now works automatically when you call Implement members, Specify type explicitly, Add remaining patterns, and other code generation actions.
Other changes include Code Coverage for your Rust code, which has been a part of the
plugin for a few releases already, handy interactive inlays for type hints, and
include! macro support.
VCS | Get from Version control) was reworked. Now you can log in from the dialog, or if you’re already logged in, the IDE will instantly preview the lists of all repositories grouped by accounts or organizations.
Settings | Appearance & Behavior | Appearance | Use contrast scrollbars.
If it’s possible to debug on the microcontroller of your choice with a GDB Server, you can now do it from CLion using a special Embedded GDB Server Run/Debug configuration. It covers OpenOCD, ST-Link GDB Servers, Segger J-Link GDB Server, QEMU, and many other specific GDB Servers.
Create a configuration, providing a path to GDB Server, arguments to run the server, and other appropriate settings, and you are all set and ready to debug on-chip from CLion!
When debugging on-chip, it’s crucial to have the ability to view the peripherals. In CLion, this view is now available for two types of Run/Debug configurations: Embedded GDB Server and OpenOCD Download & Run. In both cases, a Peripherals tab appears in the debug tool window when you start debugging. Load the appropriate .svd file for your board and select the active peripherals you need to see.
CLion 2019.2 now distinguishes three types of line breakpoints:
The types are detected automatically on the fly and the breakpoint icons are updated accordingly.
If you prefer the command line interface of GDB/LLDB and use the debugger console available in the debug tool window, you will benefit from completion for GDB/LLDB commands. Use Tab or Ctrl+Space to invoke it.
This completion is powered by GDB or LLDB, respectively; CLion simply gives you access to the suggestions.
If you use the Microsoft Visual C++ toolchain in CLion, now you can try a new experimental debugger.
It’s implemented by the JetBrains team on top of LLDB and is bundled into CLion. To
enable bundled support for native visualizers, use
Settings | Build, Execution,
Deployment | Debugger Data Views | Enable NatVis renderers for LLDB.
An experimental debugger is available when turned on explicitly: call up the Maintenance dialog (Shift+Ctrl+Alt+/) | Experimental features, and select cidr.debugger.lldb.windows to control it.
When debugging your application, you can easily review the memory behind a pointer: in the Variables view of the debug tool window, press Ctrl+Enter on a pointer to invoke the Memory View. In 2019.2, we’ve updated the Memory View to make it even more useful.
Navigate to a particular address in memory from the Memory View. Use the hex value
representing an address, a pointer variable, or call the address (
any variable you are interested in.
Code completion will assist you with the known symbols.
If you are interested in the ASCII memory format, you’ll find the ASCII view in the column on the right of the Memory View useful.
Thanks to parameter name hints in v2019.2, you can avoid switching to the function signature while exploring a function call. This in turn should help increase the code readability.
For function calls, lambdas, constructors, initializer lists, and macro expressions, CLion shows the names of the parameters for the passed arguments. This works if an argument is a literal or an expression with more than one operand.
The ‘unused includes’ check is back and completely reimplemented on top of the Clangd-based engine. It suggests 3 detection strategies: a conservative one, an aggressive one, and the default one (Detect not directly used) which is the closest to the “Include What You Use” principle.
The Clang-Tidy bundled binary was updated to the newest version, which brings a set of new checks to CLion. This includes some new abseil-* checks, a few from the clang-analyzer-* group, several new modernize-* checks, and more.
Since v2019.1, CLion has support for ClangFormat as an alternative formatter tool. Now, if you have customized your .clang-format config files in the project, you can benefit from code assistance when you update them.
To learn about any particular option, call the Quick Documentation popup (Ctrl+Q) and read the original documentation with samples.
CLion validates the content of your .clang-format config file against the built-in JSON schema. If the option’s value doesn’t match the allowed value set, a warning will be shown.
When customizing the .clang-format config file, you can benefit from code completion working for both options and their values.
Code completion popup for option names also includes a short description of the option, so you can quickly check it while typing the option name.
The naming convention settings
Settings | Editor |
Code Style | C/C++ | Naming Convention) were reworked to provide better flexibility
and more opportunities. New settings like Visibility (Public, Private, or Protected)
and Specifier (Const or Static) were added. We’ve also updated the rules to address
several kinds of entities at once.
It’s possible to work with the new UI without using the mouse.
As requested by CLion users, a new style – Leading_snake_case, which capitalizes only the first letter in the snake_case name, leaving the rest in lower case – is now available, along with the somewhat similar Upper_Snake_Case style and others.
If you need to edit shell scripts while you are working on your C++ project, you can do this with CLion as it now bundles the Shell Script plugin.
You can benefit from code highlighting, word and path completion, and even textual Rename.
Have code in your project in other languages, such as PHP, Ruby, or C#? You’ll be happy to learn that syntax highlighting is now available in CLion for over 20 different programming languages!
You can now commit directly from Local Changes tab. Just enable the “Commit from the
Local Changes without showing a dialog” option at
Settings | Version
Control | Commit Dialog.
Use the Commit shortcut (Ctrl+K) and the IDE will select the modified files for the commit and focus on the Commit message field in the Local Changes tab of the Version Control tool window.
There is some huge ongoing work in CLion to improve the IDE’s performance such as indexing, responsiveness, and elimination of freezes, among others. Part of this work is already included in v2019.2:
Another huge update for the Rust plugin brings a new experimental macro expansion
engine. You can turn it on in
Settings | Languages
& Frameworks | Rust | Expand declarative macros.
This engine provides you with code insight features such as highlighting, name
resolution, and completion for generated modules and methods from
blocks. Besides this, it enables navigation in the macro calls.
Other changes include a Duplicate code fragments inspection for Rust, and other new quick-fixes and inspections.