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.TH mcs 1 "6 January 2001"
mcs \- Mono Compiler Suite.
.B mcs
[option] [source-files]
mcs is the Mono C# compiler, an implementation of the ECMA-334
language specification. You can pass one or more options to drive the
compiler, and a set of source files. Extra options or arguments can
be provided in a response file. Response files are referenced by
prepending the @ symbol to the response file name.
The Mono C# compiler accepts the same options than the Microsoft C#
compiler does. Those options can start with a slash or a dash
(/checked is the same as -checked). Additionally to this, the
GNU-like options are supported, those begin with "--". All
MCS-specific flags which are not available in the Microsoft C#
compiler are available only with the GNU-style options.
C# source files must end with a ".cs" extension. Compilation of C#
source code requires all the files that make up a library, module or
executable to be provided on the command line. There is no support
for partial compilation. To achieve the benefits of partial
compilation, you should compile programs into their own assemblies,
and later reference them with the "-r" flag.
The Mono C# compiler generates images (.exe files) that contain CIL
byte code that can be executed by any system that implements a Common
Language Infrastructure virtual machine such as the Microsoft .NET
runtime engine on Windows or the Mono runtime engine on Unix systems.
Executables are not bound to a specific CPU or operating system.
.I \-\-about
Displays information about the Mono C# compiler
.I \-\-addmodule:MODULE1[,MODULE2]
Includes the specified modules in the resulting assembly.
.I -checked, -checked+
Sets the default compilation mode to `checked'. This makes all
the math operations checked (the default is unchecked).
.I -checked-
Sets the default compilation mode to `unchecked'. This makes all
the math operations unchecked (this is the default).
.I -codepage:ID
Specifies the code page used to process the input files from the
point it is specified on. By default files will be processed in the
Latin-1 code page. The compiler will also automatically detect
Unicode files that have an embedded byte mark at the beginning. The
special ID "utf8" can be used to switch to utf8 and the ID "reset"
restores the automatic handling of code pages.
.I \-define:SYMLIST, -d:SYMLIST
Defines the symbol listed by the semi-colon separeted list SYMLIST
SYMBOL. This can be tested in the source code by the pre-processor,
or can be used by methods that have been tagged with the Conditional
.I \-debug, \-debug+, \-g
Generate debugging information. To obtain stack traces with debugging
information, you need to invoke the mono runtime with the `--debug'
flag. This debugging information is stored inside the assembly as a
.I \-debug-
Do not generate debugging information.
.I \-delaysign+
Only embed the strongname public key into the assembly. The actual
signing must be done in a later stage using the SN tool. This is useful
to protect the private key during development. Note that delay signing
can only be done using a strongname key file (not a key container). The
option is equivalent to including [assembly: AssemblyDelaySign (true)]
in your source code. Compiler option takes precedence over the
.I \-delaysign-
Default. Strongname (sign) the assembly using the strong name key file
(or container). The option is equivalent to including [assembly:
AssemblyDelaySign (false)] in your source code. Compiler option takes
precedence over the attributes.
.I \-doc:FILE
Extracts the C#/XML documentation from the source code and stores in in
the given FILE.
.I \-\-expect-error X L
The compiler will expect the code to generate an error
named `X' in line `L'. This is only used by the test suite.
.I \-\-fatal
This is used for debugging the compiler. This makes the error emission
generate an exception that can be caught by a debugger.
.I \-keyfile:KEYFILE
Strongname (sign) the output assembly using the key pair present in
the specified strong name key file (snk). A full key pair is required
by default (or when using delaysign-). A file containing only the
public key can be used with delaysign+. The option is equivalent to
including [assembly: AssemblyKeyFile ("KEYFILE")] in your source code.
Compiler option takes precedence over the attributes.
.I \-keycontainer:CONTAINER
Strongname (sign) the output assembly using the key pair present in
the specified container. Note that delaysign+ is ignored when using
key containers. The option is equivalent to including [assembly:
AssemblyKeyName ("CONTAINER")] in your source code. Compiler option
takes precedence over the attributes.
.I \-langversion:TEXT
The option specifies the version of the language to use. The feature
set is different in each C# version. This switch can be used to force
the compiler to allow only a subset of the features.
The possible values are:
Default - Instruct compiler to use the latest version. Equivalent
is to omit the switch.
ISO-1 - Restrict compiler to use only ISO standardized features.
The usage of features such as generics, static classes, anonymous
methods will lead to error.
Each path specified in the comma-separated list will direct the
compiler to look for libraries in that specified path.
Directs the compiler to look for libraries in the specified path.
Multiple paths can be provided by using the option multiple times.
.I \-main:CLASS
Tells the compiler which CLASS contains the entry point. Useful when
you are compiling several classes with a Main method.
.I \-nostdlib, -nostdlib+
Use this flag if you want to compile the core library. This makes the
compiler load its internal types from the assembly being compiled.
.I \-noconfig, \-noconfig+
Disables the default compiler configuration to be loaded. The
compiler by default has references to the system assemblies.
.I \-nowarn:WARNLIST
Makes the compiler ignore warnings specified in the comma-separeted
.I -optimize, -optimize+, -optimize-
Controls whether to perform optimizations on the code. -optimize and
-optimize+ will turn on optimizations, -optimize- will turn it off.
The default in mcs is to optimize+.
.I -out:FNAME, -o FNAME
Names the output file to be generated.
.I \-\-parse
Used for benchmarking. The compiler will only parse its input files.
.I \-pkg:package1[,packageN]
The compiler will invoke pkg-config --libs on the set of packages
specified on the command line to obtain libraries and directories to
compile the code.
This is typically used with third party components, like this:
$ mcs -pkg:gtk-sharp demo.cs
.I -resource:RESOURCE[,ID]
Embeds to the given resource file. The optional ID can be used to
give a different name to the resource. If not specified, the resource
name will be the file name.
.I -linkresource:RESOURCE[,ID]
Links to the specified RESOURCE. The optional ID can be used to give
a name to the linked resource.
Reference the named assemblies. Use this to use classes from the named
assembly in your program. The assembly will be loaded from either the
system directory where all the assemblies live, or from the path
explicitly given with the -L option.
You can also use a semicolon to separate the assemblies instead of a
.I \-recurse:PATTERN, --recurse PATTERN
Does recursive compilation using the specified pattern. In Unix the
shell will perform globbing, so you migth want to use it like this:
$ mcs -recurse:'*.cs'
.I \-\-stacktrace
Generates a stack trace at the time the error is reported, useful for
debugging the compiler.
.I \-target:KIND, \-t:KIND
Used to specify the desired target. The possible values are: exe
(plain executable), winexe (Windows.Forms executable), library
(component libraries) and module (partial library).
.I \-\-timestamp
Another debugging flag. Used to display the times at various points
in the compilation process.
.I \-unsafe, -unsafe+
Enables compilation of unsafe code.
.I \-v
Debugging. Turns on verbose yacc parsing.
.I \-v2
Turns on C# 2.0 language features.
.I \-\-version
Shows the compiler version.
.I \-warnaserror, \-warnaserror+
Treat warnings as errors.
.I \-warn:LEVEL
Sets the warning level. 0 is the lowest warning level, and 4 is the
highest. The default is 2.
.I \-win32res:FILE
Specifies a Win32 resource file (.res) to be bundled into the
resulting assembly.
.I \-win32icon:FILE
Attaches the icon specified in FILE on the output into the resulting
.I \-\-
Use this to stop option parsing, and allow option-looking parameters
to be passed on the command line.
defines have a special meaning to the compiler.
By default calls to methods and properties in the
System.Diagnostics.Trace class are not generated unless the TRACE
symbol is defined (either through a "#define TRACE") in your source
code, or by using the
.I "--define TRACE"
in the command line.
By default calls to methods and properties in the
System.Diagnostics.Debug class are not generated unless the DEBUG
symbol is defined (either through a "#define DEBUG") in your source
code, or by using the
.I "--define DEBUG"
in the command line.
Note that the effect of defining TRACE and DEBUG is a global setting,
even if they are only defined in a single file.
When use the "--debug" or "-g" flag, MCS will create an assembler file
FILE-debug.s containing debugging information where FILE is the name of
the generated assembly. You need to run this file through the assembler
to get a object file FILE-debug.o. See mono's "--dwarf-plus" argument
for details on how to use this file.
During compilation the MCS compiler defines the __MonoCS__ symbol,
this can be used by pre-processor instructions to compile Mono C#
compiler specific code. Please note that this symbol is only to test
for the compiler, and is not useful to distinguish compilation or
deployment platforms.
The Mono C# Compiler was written by Miguel de Icaza, Ravi Pratap and
Martin Baulig at Ximian.
The Mono Compiler Suite is released under the terms of the GNU GPL.
Please read the accompanying `COPYING' file for details. Alternative
licenses are available from Ximian.
mono(1), mint(1), sn(1)
To report bugs in the compiler, you can use `bug-buddy', or you can
file bug reports in our bug tracking system:
The Mono Mailing List is available at:
The Mono C# compiler is developed by Ximian, Inc
( ( and is based on the
ECMA C# language standard available here:
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