Qt5 module

The Qt5 module provides tools to automatically deal with the various tools and steps required for Qt. The module has two methods.


This method takes the following keyword arguments:

  • moc_headers, moc_sources, ui_files, qresources, which define the files that require preprocessing with moc, uic and rcc
  • include_directories, the directories to add to header search path for moc (optional)
  • moc_extra_arguments, any additional arguments to moc (optional). Available since v0.44.0.
  • uic_extra_arguments, any additional arguments to uic (optional). Available since v0.49.0.
  • rcc_extra_arguments, any additional arguments to rcc (optional). Available since v0.49.0.
  • dependencies, dependency objects needed by moc. Available since v0.48.0.

It returns an opaque object that should be passed to a main build target.

compile_translations (since v0.44.0)

This method generates the necessary targets to build translation files with lrelease, it takes the following keyword arguments:

  • ts_files, the list of input translation files produced by Qt's lupdate tool.
  • install when true, this target is installed during the install step (optional).
  • install_dir directory to install to (optional).
  • build_by_default when set to true, to have this target be built by default, that is, when invoking meson compile; the default value is false (optional).
  • qresource rcc source file to extract ts_files from; cannot be used with ts_files kwarg. Available since v0.56.0.
  • rcc_extra_arguments, any additional arguments to rcc (optional), when used with `qresource. Available since v0.56.0.

Returns either: a list of custom targets for the compiled translations, or, if using a qresource file, a single custom target containing the processed source file, which should be passed to a main build target.


This method returns true if all tools used by this module are found, false otherwise.

It should be used to compile optional Qt code:

qt5 = import('qt5')
if qt5.has_tools(required: get_option('qt_feature'))
  moc_files = qt5.preprocess(...)

This method takes the following keyword arguments:

  • required: by default, required is set to false. If required is set to true or an enabled feature and some tools are missing Meson will abort.
  • method: method used to find the Qt dependency (auto by default).

Since: 0.54.0


See Qt dependencies

The 'modules' argument is used to include Qt modules in the project. See the Qt documentation for the list of modules.

The 'private_headers' argument allows usage of Qt's modules private headers. (since v0.47.0)


A simple example would look like this:

qt5 = import('qt5')
qt5_dep = dependency('qt5', modules: ['Core', 'Gui'])
inc = include_directories('includes')
moc_files = qt5.preprocess(moc_headers : 'myclass.h',
                           moc_extra_arguments: ['-DMAKES_MY_MOC_HEADER_COMPILE'],
                           include_directories: inc,
                           dependencies: qt5_dep)
translations = qt5.compile_translations(ts_files : 'myTranslation_fr.ts', build_by_default : true)
executable('myprog', 'main.cpp', 'myclass.cpp', moc_files,
           include_directories: inc,
           dependencies : qt5_dep)

Sometimes, translations are embedded inside the binary using qresource files. In this case the ts files do not need to be explicitly listed, but will be inferred from the built qm files listed in the qresource file. For example:

qt5 = import('qt5')
qt5_dep = dependency('qt5', modules: ['Core', 'Gui'])
lang_cpp = qt5.compile_translations(qresource: 'lang.qrc')
executable('myprog', 'main.cpp', lang_cpp,
           dependencies: qt5_dep)

The results of the search are