CLion 2020.1 Help

Remote Development

There are several options for remote development in CLion, each targeting a particular subset of the setups: Full Remote Mode, WSL, and two variants of using GDB/gdbserver, GDB Remote Debug and Remote GDB Server.

To help you compare these options and choose the most suitable one, we summarized their details in the tables given below. Learn more from our webinar Remote Development with CLion and the articles dedicated to each option.

System and IDE configuration

Full Remote ModeWSLGDB Remote DebugRemote GDB Server
Local OS

macOS / Linux / Windows

Windows

macOS / Linux / Windows

macOS / Linux / Windows

Remote OS

Linux

Certain Linux distributions

Any OS supporting gdbserver

Any OS supporting gdbserver and SSH

Connection protocol

SSH

SSH

TCP / UDP or serial line

TCP / UDP or serial line;
SSH for uploading

Required tools

rsync for macOS / Linux clients;
tar for Windows clients

-

gdbserver on target

gdbserver on target

Sources location

Locally

Locally

Locally;
symbol file also placed locally

Locally

Synchronization

Automatic for all sources;
manual resync of header search paths

Not required

Manual

Automatic for the binary

Building

Remotely

On WSL

Not specified

Locally (cross-compilation required)

Running
Debugging

Remotely

On WSL

Program runs remotely under gdbserver;
CLion's GDB connects to the running process
and debugs it locally

Similar to GDB Remote Debug

Project-level settings

Full Remote ModeWSLGDB Remote DebugRemote GDB Server
Project format

CMake

CMake / Compilation database

Any

CMake

Toolchain

Remote

WSL

Not specified

Default on macOS/Linux;
MinWG, Cygwin, WSL on Windows

Path mappings

Created automatically,
customizable in deployment entry

Not required

Not created automatically,
should be set up in run/debug configuration

Not created automatically,
should be set up in run/debug configuration

Steps of the workflow

Full Remote Mode

  1. Create a Remote toolchain:
    - provide credentials and check the connection,
    - wait for tools detection, provide the paths manually if required.

  2. Set the Remote toolchain as default
    or create an associated CMake profile.

  3. If needed, adjust path mappings in the deployment entry.

  4. Use the default profile or select the profile from step 2 for build, run, and debug.

WSL

  1. Configure WSL.

  2. Create a WSL toolchain and provide credentials.

  3. Set the WSL toolchain as default
    or create an associated CMake profile.

  4. Select the default profile or the profile from step 3 for build, run, and debug.

GDB Remote Debug

  1. Place the binary on the remote machine and symbol file on the local machine.

  2. In CLion, create a GDB Remote Debug configuration:

    • provide the symbol file location,

    • specify connection details,

    • set up path mappings.

  3. Launch the program under gdbserver on the remote machine.

  4. In CLion, debug the configuration created on step 2.

Remote GDB Server

  1. Create a Remote GDB Server configuration:

    • provide the credentials to access the target,

    • configure the uploading process,

    • (optional) set the gdbserver connection details.

  2. Select the Debug CMake profile and start a debug session for the created configuration.

Last modified: 26 May 2020