Command-line arguments

Here's the list of arguments you can pass to rustdoc:

-h/--help: help

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc -h
$ rustdoc --help

This will show rustdoc's built-in help, which largely consists of a list of possible command-line flags.

Some of rustdoc's flags are unstable; this page only shows stable options, --help will show them all.

-V/--version: version information

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc -V
$ rustdoc --version

This will show rustdoc's version, which will look something like this:

rustdoc 1.17.0 (56124baa9 2017-04-24)

-v/--verbose: more verbose output

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc -v src/lib.rs
$ rustdoc --verbose src/lib.rs

This enables "verbose mode", which means that more information will be written to standard out. What is written depends on the other flags you've passed in. For example, with --version:

$ rustdoc --verbose --version
rustdoc 1.17.0 (56124baa9 2017-04-24)
binary: rustdoc
commit-hash: hash
commit-date: date
host: host-triple
release: 1.17.0
LLVM version: 3.9

-r/--input-format: input format

This flag is currently ignored; the idea is that rustdoc would support various input formats, and you could specify them via this flag.

Rustdoc only supports Rust source code and Markdown input formats. If the file ends in .md or .markdown, rustdoc treats it as a Markdown file. Otherwise, it assumes that the input file is Rust.

-w/--output-format: output format

This flag is currently ignored; the idea is that rustdoc would support various output formats, and you could specify them via this flag.

Rustdoc only supports HTML output, and so this flag is redundant today.

-o/--output: output path

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs -o target\\doc
$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --output target\\doc

By default, rustdoc's output appears in a directory named doc in the current working directory. With this flag, it will place all output into the directory you specify.

--crate-name: controlling the name of the crate

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --crate-name mycrate

By default, rustdoc assumes that the name of your crate is the same name as the .rs file. --crate-name lets you override this assumption with whatever name you choose.

-L/--library-path: where to look for dependencies

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs -L target/debug/deps
$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --library-path target/debug/deps

If your crate has dependencies, rustdoc needs to know where to find them. Passing --library-path gives rustdoc a list of places to look for these dependencies.

This flag takes any number of directories as its argument, and will use all of them when searching.

--cfg: passing configuration flags

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --cfg feature="foo"

This flag accepts the same values as rustc --cfg, and uses it to configure compilation. The example above uses feature, but any of the cfg values are acceptable.

--extern: specify a dependency's location

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --extern lazy-static=/path/to/lazy-static

Similar to --library-path, --extern is about specifying the location of a dependency. --library-path provides directories to search in, --extern instead lets you specify exactly which dependency is located where.

-C/--codegen: pass codegen options to rustc

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs -C target_feature=+avx
$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --codegen target_feature=+avx

$ rustdoc --test src/lib.rs -C target_feature=+avx
$ rustdoc --test src/lib.rs --codegen target_feature=+avx

$ rustdoc --test README.md -C target_feature=+avx
$ rustdoc --test README.md --codegen target_feature=+avx

When rustdoc generates documentation, looks for documentation tests, or executes documentation tests, it needs to compile some rust code, at least part-way. This flag allows you to tell rustdoc to provide some extra codegen options to rustc when it runs these compilations. Most of the time, these options won't affect a regular documentation run, but if something depends on target features to be enabled, or documentation tests need to use some additional options, this flag allows you to affect that.

The arguments to this flag are the same as those for the -C flag on rustc. Run rustc -C help to get the full list.

--passes: add more rustdoc passes

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc --passes list
$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --passes strip-priv-imports

An argument of "list" will print a list of possible "rustdoc passes", and other arguments will be the name of which passes to run in addition to the defaults.

For more details on passes, see the chapter on them.

See also --no-defaults.

--no-defaults: don't run default passes

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --no-defaults

By default, rustdoc will run several passes over your code. This removes those defaults, allowing you to use --passes to specify exactly which passes you want.

For more details on passes, see the chapter on them.

See also --passes.

--test: run code examples as tests

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --test

This flag will run your code examples as tests. For more, see the chapter on documentation tests.

See also --test-args.

--test-args: pass options to test runner

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --test --test-args ignored

This flag will pass options to the test runner when running documentation tests. For more, see the chapter on documentation tests.

See also --test.

--target: generate documentation for the specified target triple

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --target x86_64-pc-windows-gnu

Similar to the --target flag for rustc, this generates documentation for a target triple that's different than your host triple.

All of the usual caveats of cross-compiling code apply.

--markdown-css: include more CSS files when rendering markdown

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc README.md --markdown-css foo.css

When rendering Markdown files, this will create a <link> element in the <head> section of the generated HTML. For example, with the invocation above,

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="foo.css">

will be added.

When rendering Rust files, this flag is ignored.

--html-in-header: include more HTML in

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --html-in-header header.html
$ rustdoc README.md --html-in-header header.html

This flag takes a list of files, and inserts them into the <head> section of the rendered documentation.

--html-before-content: include more HTML before the content

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --html-before-content extra.html
$ rustdoc README.md --html-before-content extra.html

This flag takes a list of files, and inserts them inside the <body> tag but before the other content rustdoc would normally produce in the rendered documentation.

--html-after-content: include more HTML after the content

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --html-after-content extra.html
$ rustdoc README.md --html-after-content extra.html

This flag takes a list of files, and inserts them before the </body> tag but after the other content rustdoc would normally produce in the rendered documentation.

--markdown-playground-url: control the location of the playground

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc README.md --markdown-playground-url https://play.rust-lang.org/

When rendering a Markdown file, this flag gives the base URL of the Rust Playground, to use for generating Run buttons.

--markdown-no-toc: don't generate a table of contents

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc README.md --markdown-no-toc

When generating documentation from a Markdown file, by default, rustdoc will generate a table of contents. This flag suppresses that, and no TOC will be generated.

-e/--extend-css: extend rustdoc's CSS

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs -e extra.css
$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --extend-css extra.css

With this flag, the contents of the files you pass are included at the bottom of Rustdoc's theme.css file.

While this flag is stable, the contents of theme.css are not, so be careful! Updates may break your theme extensions.

--sysroot: override the system root

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --sysroot /path/to/sysroot

Similar to rustc --sysroot, this lets you change the sysroot rustdoc uses when compiling your code.

--edition: control the edition of docs and doctests

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --edition 2018
$ rustdoc --test src/lib.rs --edition 2018

This flag allows rustdoc to treat your rust code as the given edition. It will compile doctests with the given edition as well. As with rustc, the default edition that rustdoc will use is 2015 (the first edition).

--theme: add a theme to the documentation output

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc src/lib.rs --theme /path/to/your/custom-theme.css

rustdoc's default output includes two themes: light (the default) and dark. This flag allows you to add custom themes to the output. Giving a CSS file to this flag adds it to your documentation as an additional theme choice. The theme's name is determined by its filename; a theme file named custom-theme.css will add a theme named custom-theme to the documentation.

--check-theme: verify custom themes against the default theme

Using this flag looks like this:

$ rustdoc --check-theme /path/to/your/custom-theme.css

While rustdoc's HTML output is more-or-less consistent between versions, there is no guarantee that a theme file will have the same effect. The --theme flag will still allow you to add the theme to your documentation, but to ensure that your theme works as expected, you can use this flag to verify that it implements the same CSS rules as the official light theme.

--check-theme is a separate mode in rustdoc. When rustdoc sees the --check-theme flag, it discards all other flags and only performs the CSS rule comparison operation.