IDF Component Manager

The IDF Component manager is a tool that downloads dependencies for any ESP-IDF CMake project. The download happens automatically during a run of CMake. It can source components either from the component registry or from a git repository.

A list of components can be found on

Activating the Component Manager

If CMake is started using or ESP-IDF VSCode Extension then the component manager will be activated by default.

If CMake is used directly or with some CMake-based IDE like CLion, it’s necessary to set the IDF_COMPONENT_MANAGER environment variable to 1 to enable the component manager integration with the build system.

Using with a project

Dependencies for each component in the project are defined in a separate manifest file named idf_component.yml placed in the root of the component. The manifest file template can be created for a component by running create-manifest --component=my_component. When a new manifest is added to one of the components in the project it’s necessary to reconfigure it manually by running reconfigure. Then build will track changes in idf_component.yml manifests and automatically triggers CMake when necessary.

There is an example application: example:build_system/cmake/component_manager that uses components installed by the component manager.

It’s not necessary to have a manifest for components that don’t need any managed dependencies.

When CMake configures the project (e.g. reconfigure) component manager does a few things:

  • Processes idf_component.yml manifests for every component in the project and recursively solves dependencies

  • Creates a dependencies.lock file in the root of the project with a full list of dependencies

  • Downloads all dependencies to the managed_components directory

The lock-file dependencies.lock and content of managed_components directory is not supposed to be modified by a user. When the component manager runs it always make sure they are up to date. If these files were accidentally modified it’s possible to re-run the component manager by triggering CMake with reconfigure

Defining dependencies in the manifest

  # Required IDF version
  idf: ">=4.1"
  # Defining a dependency from the registry:
  example/cmp: ">=1.0.0"

  # # Other ways to define dependencies
  # # For components maintained by Espressif only name can be used.
  # # Same as `espressif/cmp`
  # component: "~1.0.0"
  # # Or in a longer form with extra parameters
  # component2:
  #   version: ">=2.0.0"
  #   # For transient dependencies `public` flag can be set.
  #   # `public` flag doesn't affect the `main` component.
  #   # All dependencies of `main` are public by default.
  #   public: true
  #   # For components hosted on non-default registry:
  #   service_url: ""
  # # For components in git repository:
  # test_component:
  #   path: test_component
  #   git: ssh://
  # # For test projects during component development
  # # components can be used from a local directory
  # # with relative or absolute path
  # some_local_component:
  #   path: ../../projects/component