Buck: Buck Cheat Sheet
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Buck Cheat Sheet

This section provides example command lines that you can use to obtain information about Buck and about your build. These techniques can help you to understand how your build works and to troubleshoot issues with your build.

Most of these examples use the buck query, buck targets, and buck audit commands. For more information and examples, see the reference pages for those commands.

How do I get a list of all the rules that Buck supports, from the command line, so that I can process them with grep, sed, etc?

Use buck audit with the ruletypes (plural) subcommand, which returns an alphabetized list of all the rules that Buck supports.

The following command line uses buck audit ruletypes with the grep command to print all the build rules that have the string android in their names.

buck audit ruletypes | grep android

Note that these are not all the rules that Buck provides for Android development. For example, the rules apk_genrule and ndk_library support Android development, but do not themselves contain the string android in their names.

How do I see the arguments for a rule from the command line?

Use buck audit with the ruletype (singular) subcommand followed by the name of the rule.

The following command line uses buck audit ruletype to view the arguments supported by the remote_file rule.

buck audit ruletype remote_file

def remote_file (
    labels = None,
    licenses = None,
    out = None,
    type = None,

How do I find all the targets for a package?

Specify a build target pattern that represents the targets in the package.

buck query //path/to/dir/...

The buck query command can accept a build target pattern as a parameter. If you specify a build target pattern, Buck evaluates this pattern and shows all the build targets that match it.

How do I specify more than one target to buck query?

Use the buck query set() operator.

The following command line returns the target main in the build file in the root of the Buck project and all the targets from the build file in the myclass subdirectory of the root.

buck query "set( '//:main' '//myclass:' )"

How do I get the attribute names and values for the targets returned by a query?

Add the --output-attributes option to the command line, followed by regular expressions that represent the attributes of interest.

buck query "deps(//foo:bar)" --output-attributes 'name' 'exported_headers'

The --output-attributes option enables you to specify which attributes Buck should return. Instead of returning the names of the targets that match the query expression, Buck returns the names and values of the specified attributes for those targets in JSON format. Attributes are specified as regular expressions. For example, '.*' matches all attributes. See the buck query page for more details. The output for the example query above might look something like the following.

  "//foo/bar/lib:lib" : {
    "exported_headers" : [ "App/util.h" ],
    "name" : "lib"
  "//foo/bar:app" : {
    "exported_headers" : [ "App/lib.h" ],
    "name" : "app"

How do I perform a query inside of a rule?

Use string parameter macros, specifically, the query macros:

$(query_targets "queryfunction(//:foo)")
$(query_outputs "queryfunction(//:foo)")
$(query_targets_and_outputs [SEPARATOR] "queryfunction(//:foo)")

Note, however, that the query macros are supported only for genrule and apk_genrule.

How do I find the dependencies for a target?

Use the deps() operator.

buck query "deps('//foo:bar')"
buck query "deps('//foo:bar', 1, first_order_deps())"
buck query "deps(set('//foo:bar' '//foo:lib' '//foo/baz:util'))"

The deps operator finds the dependencies of the specified targets. The first argument represents the targets of interest. This can be a single build target or build target pattern, or a set of these.

The optional second argument is the depth of the search for dependencies from the specified targets. For example, 1, as shown in the example above, returns only the direct dependencies. If you do not provide this argument, the output is the complete set of transitive dependencies.

How do I find the reverse-dependencies for a target, that is, the targets that depend on a specified target?

Use the buck query rdeps (reverse dependencies) operator.

The following example, returns the targets in the transitive closure of //foo:bar that depend directly on //example:baz.

buck query "rdeps('//foo:bar', '//example:baz', 1)"

How do I find the buildfile that contains the target that owns a source file?

In order to find the build file associated with a source file, combine the owner operator with buildfile. For example,

buck query "buildfile(owner('foo/bar/main.cpp'))" 

first finds the targets that own foo/bar/main.cpp and then returns the build files, such as foo/bar/BUCK, that define those targets.