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A C++ implementation of gRPC

To start using gRPC C++

In the C++ world, there's no universally accepted standard for managing project dependencies. Therefore, gRPC supports several major build systems, which should satisfy most users.


We recommend using Bazel for projects that use gRPC as it will give you the best developer experience (easy handling of dependencies that support bazel & fast builds).

To add gRPC as a dependency in bazel:

  1. determine commit SHA for the grpc release you want to use
  2. Use the http_archive bazel rule to include gRPC source
    name = "com_github_grpc_grpc",
    urls = [
    strip_prefix = "grpc-YOUR_GRPC_COMMIT_SHA",

load("@com_github_grpc_grpc//bazel:grpc_deps.bzl", "grpc_deps")


NOTE: currently bazel is only supported for building gRPC on Linux.


Currently the default choice for building on UNIX based systems is make.

To install gRPC for C++ on your system using make, follow the Building gRPC C++ instructions to build from source and then install locally using make install. This also installs the protocol buffer compiler protoc (if you don't have it already), and the C++ gRPC plugin for protoc.

WARNING: After installing with make install there is no easy way to uninstall, which can cause issues if you later want to remove the grpc and/or protobuf installation or upgrade to a newer version.


cmake is the default build option on Windows, but also works on Linux, MacOS. cmake has good support for crosscompiling and can be used for targeting Android platform.

If your project is using cmake, there are several ways to add gRPC dependency.

  • install gRPC via cmake first and then locate it with find_package(gRPC CONFIG). Example
  • via cmake's ExternalProject_Add using a technique called "superbuild". Example
  • add gRPC source tree to your project (preferrably as a git submodule) and add it to your cmake project with add_subdirectory. Example

Packaging systems

There's no standard packaging system for C++. We've looked into supporting some (e.g. Conan and vcpkg) but we are not there yet. Contributions and community-maintained packages for popular packaging systems are welcome!

Examples & Additional Documentation

You can find out how to build and run our simplest gRPC C++ example in our C++ quick start.

For more detailed documentation on using gRPC in C++ , see our main documentation site at, specifically:

  • Overview: An introduction to gRPC with a simple Hello World example in all our supported languages, including C++.
  • gRPC Basics - C++: A tutorial that steps you through creating a simple gRPC C++ example application.
  • Asynchronous Basics - C++: A tutorial that shows you how to use gRPC C++'s asynchronous/non-blocking APIs.

To start developing gRPC C++

For instructions on how to build gRPC C++ from source, follow the Building gRPC C++ instructions.