makeDeduce the Recipes
It is not necessary to spell out the recipes for compiling the individual
C source files, because
make can figure them out: it has an
implicit rule for updating a ‘.o’ file from a correspondingly
named ‘.c’ file using a ‘cc -c’ command. For example, it will
use the recipe ‘cc -c main.c -o main.o’ to compile main.c into
main.o. We can therefore omit the recipes from the rules for the
object files. See Using Implicit Rules.
When a ‘.c’ file is used automatically in this way, it is also automatically added to the list of prerequisites. We can therefore omit the ‘.c’ files from the prerequisites, provided we omit the recipe.
Here is the entire example, with both of these changes, and a variable
objects as suggested above:
objects = main.o kbd.o command.o display.o \ insert.o search.o files.o utils.o edit : $(objects) cc -o edit $(objects) main.o : defs.h kbd.o : defs.h command.h command.o : defs.h command.h display.o : defs.h buffer.h insert.o : defs.h buffer.h search.o : defs.h buffer.h files.o : defs.h buffer.h command.h utils.o : defs.h .PHONY : clean clean : rm edit $(objects)
This is how we would write the makefile in actual practice. (The complications associated with ‘clean’ are described elsewhere. See Phony Targets, and Errors in Recipes.)
Because implicit rules are so convenient, they are important. You will see them used frequently.