Native Image Build Options

Depending on the GraalVM version, the options to the native-image builder may differ.

  • -cp, -classpath, --class-path <class search path of directories and zip/jar files>: a : (; on Windows) separated list of directories, JAR archives, and ZIP archives to search for class files
  • -p <module path>, --module-path <module path>: a : (; on Windows) separated list of directories. Each directory is a directory of modules.
  • --add-modules <module name>[,<module name>...]: add root modules to resolve in addition to the initial module. <module name> can also be ALL-DEFAULT, ALL-SYSTEM, ALL-MODULE-PATH.
  • -D<name>=<value>: set a system property
  • -J<flag>: pass an option directly to the JVM running the native-image builder
  • --diagnostics-mode: enable diagnostics output which includes class initialization, substitutions, etc.
  • --enable-preview: allow classes to depend on preview features of this release
  • --verbose: enable verbose output
  • --version: print the product version and exit
  • --help: print this help message
  • --help-extra: print help on non-standard options
  • --auto-fallback: build standalone native executable if possible
  • --configure-reflection-metadata: enable runtime instantiation of reflection objects for non-invoked methods
  • --enable-all-security-services: add all security service classes to a generated native executable
  • --enable-http: enable HTTP support in a native executable
  • --enable-https: enable HTTPS support in a native executable
  • --enable-monitoring: enable monitoring features that allow the VM to be inspected at run time. A comma-separated list can contain heapdump, jfr, jvmstat, jmxserver (experimental), jmxclient (experimental), or all (deprecated behavior: defaults to all if no argument is provided). For example: --enable-monitoring=heapdump,jfr.
  • --enable-sbom: embed a Software Bill of Materials (SBOM) in a native executable or shared library for passive inspection. A comma-separated list can contain cyclonedx, strict (defaults to cyclonedx if no argument is provided), or export to save the SBOM to the native executable’s output directory. The optional strict flag aborts the build if any class cannot be matched to a library in the SBOM. For example: --enable-sbom=cyclonedx,strict. (Not available in GraalVM Community Edition.)
  • --enable-url-protocols: list comma-separated URL protocols to enable
  • --features: a comma-separated list of fully qualified Feature implementation classes
  • --force-fallback: force building of a fallback native executable
  • --gc=<value>: select Native Image garbage collector implementation. Allowed options for <value> are: G1 for G1 garbage collector (not available in GraalVM Community Edition); epsilon for Epsilon garbage collector; serial for Serial garbage collector (default).
  • --initialize-at-build-time: a comma-separated list of packages and classes (and implicitly all of their superclasses) that are initialized during generation of a native executable. An empty string designates all packages.
  • --initialize-at-run-time: a comma-separated list of packages and classes (and implicitly all of their subclasses) that must be initialized at run time and not during generation. An empty string is currently not supported.
  • --install-exit-handlers: provide java.lang.Terminator exit handlers
  • --libc: select the libc implementation to use. Available implementations are glibc, musl, bionic.
  • --link-at-build-time: require types to be fully defined at executable’s build time. If used without arguments, all classes in scope of the option are required to be fully defined.
  • --link-at-build-time-paths: require all types in given class or module-path entries to be fully defined at at executable’s build time
  • --list-cpu-features: show CPU features specific to the target platform and exit
  • --list-modules: list observable modules and exit
  • --native-compiler-options: provide a custom C compiler option used for query code compilation
  • --native-compiler-path: provide a custom path to the C compiler used to query code compilation and linking
  • --native-image-info: show the native toolchain information and executable’s build settings
  • --no-fallback: build a standalone native executable or report a failure
  • --pgo: a comma-separated list of files from which to read the data collected for profile-guided optimizations of AOT-compiled code (reads from default.iprof if nothing is specified). (Not available in GraalVM Community Edition.)
  • --pgo-instrument: instrument AOT-compiled code to collect data for profile-guided optimizations into the default.iprof file. (Not available in GraalVM Community Edition.)
  • --report-unsupported-elements-at-runtime: report the usage of unsupported methods and fields at run time when they are accessed the first time, instead of an error during executable’s building
  • --shared: build a shared library
  • --silent: silence build output
  • --static: build a statically-linked executable (requires libc and zlib static libraries)
  • --target: select the compilation target for native-image (in - format). It defaults to host's OS-architecture pair.
  • --trace-class-initialization: provide a comma-separated list of fully-qualified class names that a class initialization is traced for
  • --trace-object-instantiation: provide a comma-separated list of fully-qualified class names that an object instantiation is traced for
  • -O<level>: control code optimizations where available variants are b for quick build mode for development, 0 - no optimizations, 1 - basic optimizations, 2 - aggressive optimizations (default)
  • -da, -da[:[packagename]|:[classname], disableassertions[:[packagename]|:[classname]: disable assertions with specified granularity at run time
  • -dsa, -disablesystemassertions: disable assertions in all system classes at run time
  • -ea, -ea[:[packagename]|:[classname], enableassertions[:[packagename]|:[classname]: enable assertions with specified granularity at run time
  • -esa, -enablesystemassertions: enable assertions in all system classes at run time
  • -g: generate debugging information
  • -march: generate instructions for a specific machine type. Defaults to x86-64-v3 on AMD64 and armv8-a on AArch64. Use -march=compatibility for best compatibility, or -march=native for best performance if a native executable is deployed on the same machine or on a machine with the same CPU features. To list all available machine types, use -march=list.
  • -o: name of the output file to be generated

Macro Options #

  • --language:nfi: make the Truffle Native Function Interface language available
  • --tool:coverage: add source code coverage support to a GraalVM-supported language
  • --tool:insight: add support for detailed access to program’s runtime behavior, allowing users to inspect values and types at invocation or allocation sites
  • --tool:dap: allow image to open a debugger port serving the Debug Adapter Protocol in IDEs like Visual Studio Code
  • --tool:chromeinspector: add debugging support to a GraalVM-supported language
  • --tool:insightheap: snapshot a region of image heap during the execution
  • --tool:lsp: add the Language Server Protocol support to later attach compatible debuggers to GraalVM in IDEs like Visual Studio Code
  • --tool:sandbox: enables the Truffle sandbox resource limits. For more information, check the dedicated documentation
  • --tool:profiler: add profiling support to a GraalVM-supported language

The --language:js --language:nodejs, --language:python, --language:ruby, --language:R, --language:wasm, --language:llvm, --language:regex (enables the Truffle Regular Expression engine) polyglot macro options become available once the corresponding languages are added to the base GraalVM JDK.

Non-standard Options #

Run native-image --help-extra for non-standard options help.

  • --exclude-config: exclude configuration for a comma-separated pair of classpath/modulepath pattern and resource pattern. For example: ‘–exclude-config foo.jar,META-INF\/native-image\/.*.properties’ ignores all .properties files in ‘META-INF/native-image’ in all JARs named ‘foo.jar’.
  • --expert-options: list image build options for experts
  • --expert-options-all : list all image build options for experts (use at your own risk). Options marked with Extra help available contain help that can be shown with --expert-options-detail
  • --expert-options-detail: display all available help for a comma-separated list of option names. Pass * to show extra help for all options that contain it.
  • --configurations-path <search path of option-configuration directories>: a separated list of directories to be treated as option-configuration directories.
  • --debug-attach[=< port (* can be used as host meaning bind to all interfaces)>]: attach to debugger during image building (default port is 8000)
  • --diagnostics-mode: Enables logging of image-build information to a diagnostics folder.
  • --dry-run: output the command line that would be used for building
  • --bundle-create[=new-bundle.nib]: in addition to image building, create a native image bundle file (*.nibfile) that allows rebuilding of that image again at a later point. If a bundle-file gets passed the bundle will be created with the given name. Otherwise, the bundle-file name is derived from the image name. Note both bundle options can be combined with --dry-run to only perform the bundle operations without any actual image building.
  • --bundle-apply=some-bundle.nib: an image will be built from the given bundle file with the exact same arguments and files that have been passed to Native Image originally to create the bundle. Note that if an extra --bundle-create gets passed after --bundle-apply, a new bundle will be written based on the given bundle args plus any additional arguments that haven been passed afterwards. For example: native-image --bundle-apply=app.nib --bundle-create=app_dbg.nib -g creates a new bundle based on the given _app.nib_ bundle. Both bundles are the same except the new one also uses the -g option.
  • -E<env-var-key>[=<env-var-value>]: allow Native Image to access the given environment variable during image build. If the optional is not given, the value of the environment variable will be taken from the environment Native Image was invoked from.
  • -V<key>=<value>: provide values for placeholders in files
  • --add-exports: value <module>/<package>=<target-module>(,<target-module>) updates <module> to export <package> to <target-module>, regardless of module declaration. <target-module> can be ALL-UNNAMED to export to all unnamed modules
  • --add-opens: value <module>/<package>=<target-module>(,<target-module>) updates <module> to open <package> to <target-module>, regardless of module declaration.
  • --add-reads: value <module>=<target-module>(,<target-module>) updates <module> to read <target-module>, regardless of module declaration. <target-module> can be ALL-UNNAMED to read all unnamed modules.

Native Image options are also distinguished as hosted and runtime options.

Further Reading #

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