Define the package information

When creating a recipe to package a library, it is important to define the information about the package so consumers can get the information correctly. Conan achieves this by decoupling the information of the package from the format needed using Generators, that translate the generic information into the appropriate format file.

This generic information is defined inside the recipe, using the package_info() method. There you can declare package information like the location of the header files, library names, defines, flags…

from conans import ConanFile

class MyConan(ConanFile):
    name = "cool_library"

    def package_info(self):
        self.cpp_info.includedirs = ["include/cool"]
        self.cpp_info.libs = ["libcool"]
        self.cpp_info.defines= ["DEFINE_COOL=1"]

The package information is done using the attributes of the cpp_info object. This information will be aggregated by Conan and exposed via self.deps_cpp_info to consumers and generators.


This information is important as it describes the package contents in a generic way with a pretty straightforward syntax that can later be translated to a suitable format. The advantage of having this information here, is that the package could be consumed from a different build system that the one used to compile the library. For example, a library that builds using Autotools can be consumed later in CMake with this information using any of the CMake generators.

See also

Read package_info() to learn more about this method.

Using Components

If your package contains more than one library or you want to define separated components so consumers can have more granular information, you can use components in your package_info() method.


This is a experimental feature subject to breaking changes in future releases.

When you are creating a Conan package, it is recommended to have only one library (.lib, .a, .so, .dll…) per package. However, especially with third-party projects like Boost, Poco or OpenSSL, they would contain several libraries inside.

Usually those libraries inside the same package depend on each other and modelling the relationship among them is required.

With components, you can model libraries and executables inside the same package and how one depends on the other. Each library or executable will be one component inside cpp_info like this:

def package_info(self): = "OpenSSL"
    self.cpp_info.components["crypto"].names["cmake_find_package"] = "Crypto"
    self.cpp_info.components["crypto"].libs = ["libcrypto"]
    self.cpp_info.components["crypto"].defines = ["DEFINE_CRYPTO=1"]
    self.cpp_info.components["ssl"].names["cmake"] = "SSL"
    self.cpp_info.components["ssl"].includedirs = ["include/headers_ssl"]
    self.cpp_info.components["ssl"].libs = ["libssl"]
    self.cpp_info.components["ssl"].requires = ["crypto"]

You can define dependencies among different components using the requires attribute and the name of the component. The dependency graph for components will be calculated and values will be aggregated in the correct order for each field.

def package_info(self):
    self.cpp_info.components["LibA"].libs = ["liba"]      # Name of the library for the 'LibA' component
    self.cpp_info.components["LibA"].requires = ["LibB"]  # Requires point to the name of the component

    self.cpp_info.components["LibB"].libs = ["libb"]

    self.cpp_info.components["LibC"].libs = ["libc"]
    self.cpp_info.components["LibC"].requires = ["LibA"]

    self.cpp_info.components["LibD"].libs = ["libD"]
    self.cpp_info.components["LibD"].requires = ["LibA"]

    self.cpp_info.components["LibE"].libs = ["libe"]
    self.cpp_info.components["LibE"].requires = ["LibB"]

    self.cpp_info.components["LibF"].libs = ["libf"]
    self.cpp_info.components["LibF"].requires = ["LibD", "LibE"]

For consumers and generators, the order of the libraries from this components graph will be:

self.deps_cpp_info.libs == ["libf", "libe", "libd", "libc", "liba", "libb"]

Declaration of requires from other packages is also allowed:

class MyConan(ConanFile):
    requires = "zlib/1.2.11", "openssl/1.1.1g"

    def package_info(self):
        self.cpp_info.components["comp1"].requires = ["zlib::zlib"]  # Depends on all components in zlib package
        self.cpp_info.components["comp2"].requires = ["comp1", "openssl::ssl"]  # Depends on ssl component in openssl package

By default, components won’t link against any other package required by the recipe. The requires list has to be populated explicitly with the list of components from other packages to use: it can be the full requirement (zlib::zlib) or a single component (openssl::ssl).


The information of components is aggregated to the global cpp_info scope and the usage of components should be transparent.

Consumers can get this information via self.deps_cpp_info as usual and use it in the build() method of any dependent recipe:

class PocoTimerConan(ConanFile):
    requires = "zlib/1.2.11", "openssl/1.0.2u"

    def build(self):
        # Get the include directories of the SSL component of openssl package

See also

Read components reference for more information.