LLVM Clang Now Defaulting To The DWARFv5 Debug Format

Written by Michael Larabel in LLVM on 24 January 2022 at 05:09 AM EST. Add A Comment
Following GCC, the LLVM Clang C/C++ compiler front-end is now defaulting to using the DWARFv5 debugging data format.

DWARFv5 was published in 2017 and offers faster symbol searching, better debugging for optimized code, improved data compression, improve descriptions for some elements of the code, new language codes, and other improvements over the decade old DWARFv4. The DWARFv5 specification and more details can be found at dwarfstd.org.


Since GCC 11 they have used the DWARFv5 debug format by default while as of today LLVM's Clang front-end is also using DWARFv5 where possible as its default. This change will go into effect with LLVM 14.

The "-gdwarf-4" compiler switch can be used to fall back to the older DWARFv4 format. Additionally, Darwin (macOS), Android, and SCE will by default continue using DWARFv4.

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