If you are using a released version of LLVM, see the download page to find your documentation.

The LLVM compiler infrastructure supports a wide range of projects, from industrial strength compilers to specialized JIT applications to small research projects.

Similarly, documentation is broken down into several high-level groupings targeted at different audiences:

LLVM Design & Overview

Several introductory papers and presentations.

LLVM Language Reference Manual
Defines the LLVM intermediate representation.
Introduction to the LLVM Compiler
Presentation providing a users introduction to LLVM.
Intro to LLVM
Book chapter providing a compiler hacker’s introduction to LLVM.
LLVM: A Compilation Framework for Lifelong Program Analysis & Transformation
Design overview.
LLVM: An Infrastructure for Multi-Stage Optimization
More details (quite old now).
Publications mentioning LLVM
The LLVM Lexicon
Definition of acronyms, terms and concepts used in LLVM.


Getting Started, How-tos, Developer Guides, and Tutorials.

User Guides
For those new to the LLVM system.
Programming Documentation
For developers of applications which use LLVM as a library.
Subsystem Documentation
For API clients and LLVM developers.

Getting Started/Tutorials

Getting Started with the LLVM System
Discusses how to get up and running quickly with the LLVM infrastructure. Everything from unpacking and compilation of the distribution to execution of some tools.
LLVM Tutorial: Table of Contents
Tutorials about using LLVM. Includes a tutorial about making a custom language with LLVM.


LLVM and API reference documentation.

LLVM Language Reference Manual
Defines the LLVM intermediate representation and the assembly form of the different nodes.
LLVM Command Guide
A reference manual for the LLVM command line utilities (“man” pages for LLVM tools).
LLVM Testing Infrastructure Guide
A reference manual for using the LLVM testing infrastructure.
Doxygen generated documentation

Documentation for Go bindings

Github Source Repository Browser


LLVM has a thriving community of friendly and helpful developers. The two primary communication mechanisms in the LLVM community are mailing lists and IRC.

Getting Involved

LLVM welcomes contributions of all kinds. To get started, please review the following topics:

Contributing to LLVM
An overview on how to contribute to LLVM.
LLVM Developer Policy
The LLVM project’s policy towards developers and their contributions.
Sphinx Quickstart Template
A template + tutorial for writing new Sphinx documentation. It is meant to be read in source form.
Code Reviews with Phabricator
Describes how to use the Phabricator code review tool hosted on http://reviews.llvm.org/ and its command line interface, Arcanist.
How to submit an LLVM bug report
Instructions for properly submitting information about any bugs you run into in the LLVM system.
LLVM Bug Life Cycle
Describes how bugs are reported, triaged and closed.

Development Process

Information about LLVM’s development process.

Creating an LLVM Project
How-to guide and templates for new projects that use the LLVM infrastructure. The templates (directory organization, Makefiles, and test tree) allow the project code to be located outside (or inside) the llvm/ tree, while using LLVM header files and libraries.
LLVMBuild Guide
Describes the LLVMBuild organization and files used by LLVM to specify component descriptions.
How To Release LLVM To The Public
This is a guide to preparing LLVM releases. Most developers can ignore it.
How To Validate a New Release
This is a guide to validate a new release, during the release process. Most developers can ignore it.
How To Add Your Build Configuration To LLVM Buildbot Infrastructure
Instructions for adding new builder to LLVM buildbot master.
Advice on Packaging LLVM
Advice on packaging LLVM into a distribution.
Release notes for the current release
This describes new features, known bugs, and other limitations.

Mailing Lists

If you can’t find what you need in these docs, try consulting the mailing lists.

Developer’s List (llvm-dev)
This list is for people who want to be included in technical discussions of LLVM. People post to this list when they have questions about writing code for or using the LLVM tools. It is relatively low volume.
Commits Archive (llvm-commits)
This list contains all commit messages that are made when LLVM developers commit code changes to the repository. It also serves as a forum for patch review (i.e. send patches here). It is useful for those who want to stay on the bleeding edge of LLVM development. This list is very high volume.
Bugs & Patches Archive (llvm-bugs)
This list gets emailed every time a bug is opened and closed. It is higher volume than the LLVM-dev list.
Test Results Archive (llvm-testresults)
A message is automatically sent to this list by every active nightly tester when it completes. As such, this list gets email several times each day, making it a high volume list.
LLVM Announcements List (llvm-announce)
This is a low volume list that provides important announcements regarding LLVM. It gets email about once a month.


Users and developers of the LLVM project (including subprojects such as Clang) can be found in #llvm on irc.oftc.net.

This channel has several bots.

  • Buildbot reporters
  • robot - Bugzilla linker. %bug <number>
  • clang-bot - A geordi instance running near-trunk clang instead of gcc.

Meetups and social events

Besides developer meetings and conferences, there are several user groups called LLVM Socials. We greatly encourage you to join one in your city. Or start a new one if there is none:

How to start LLVM Social in your town

Community wide proposals

Proposals for massive changes in how the community behaves and how the work flow can be better.

LLVM Community Code of Conduct
Proposal to adopt a code of conduct on the LLVM social spaces (lists, events, IRC, etc).
Moving LLVM Projects to GitHub
Proposal to move from SVN/Git to GitHub.
Bugpoint Redesign
Design doc for a redesign of the Bugpoint tool.
“llvm-libc” C Standard Library
Proposal to add a libc implementation under the LLVM project.
Test-Suite Extentions
Proposals for additional benchmarks/programs for llvm’s test-suite.
Variable Names Plan
Proposal to change the variable names coding standard.
Vectorization Plan
Proposal to model the process and upgrade the infrastructure of LLVM’s Loop Vectorizer.

Indices and tables