3 Understanding and Creating Layers

The OpenEmbedded build system supports organizing Metadata into multiple layers. Layers allow you to isolate different types of customizations from each other. For introductory information on the Yocto Project Layer Model, see the “The Yocto Project Layer Model” section in the Yocto Project Overview and Concepts Manual.

3.1 Creating Your Own Layer


It is very easy to create your own layers to use with the OpenEmbedded build system, as the Yocto Project ships with tools that speed up creating layers. This section describes the steps you perform by hand to create layers so that you can better understand them. For information about the layer-creation tools, see the “Creating a new BSP Layer Using the bitbake-layers Script” section in the Yocto Project Board Support Package (BSP) Developer’s Guide and the “Creating a General Layer Using the bitbake-layers Script” section further down in this manual.

Follow these general steps to create your layer without using tools:

  1. Check Existing Layers: Before creating a new layer, you should be sure someone has not already created a layer containing the Metadata you need. You can see the OpenEmbedded Metadata Index for a list of layers from the OpenEmbedded community that can be used in the Yocto Project. You could find a layer that is identical or close to what you need.

  2. Create a Directory: Create the directory for your layer. When you create the layer, be sure to create the directory in an area not associated with the Yocto Project Source Directory (e.g. the cloned poky repository).

    While not strictly required, prepend the name of the directory with the string “meta-”. For example:


    With rare exceptions, a layer’s name follows this form:


    Following this layer naming convention can save you trouble later when tools, components, or variables “assume” your layer name begins with “meta-”. A notable example is in configuration files as shown in the following step where layer names without the “meta-” string are appended to several variables used in the configuration.

  3. Create a Layer Configuration File: Inside your new layer folder, you need to create a conf/layer.conf file. It is easiest to take an existing layer configuration file and copy that to your layer’s conf directory and then modify the file as needed.

    The meta-yocto-bsp/conf/layer.conf file in the Yocto Project Source Repositories demonstrates the required syntax. For your layer, you need to replace “yoctobsp” with a unique identifier for your layer (e.g. “machinexyz” for a layer named “meta-machinexyz”):

    # We have a conf and classes directory, add to BBPATH
    BBPATH .= ":${LAYERDIR}"
    # We have recipes-* directories, add to BBFILES
    BBFILES += "${LAYERDIR}/recipes-*/*/*.bb \
    BBFILE_COLLECTIONS += "yoctobsp"
    BBFILE_PATTERN_yoctobsp = "^${LAYERDIR}/"
    BBFILE_PRIORITY_yoctobsp = "5"
    LAYERVERSION_yoctobsp = "4"
    LAYERSERIES_COMPAT_yoctobsp = "dunfell"

    Following is an explanation of the layer configuration file:

    • BBPATH: Adds the layer’s root directory to BitBake’s search path. Through the use of the BBPATH variable, BitBake locates class files (.bbclass), configuration files, and files that are included with include and require statements. For these cases, BitBake uses the first file that matches the name found in BBPATH. This is similar to the way the PATH variable is used for binaries. It is recommended, therefore, that you use unique class and configuration filenames in your custom layer.

    • BBFILES: Defines the location for all recipes in the layer.

    • BBFILE_COLLECTIONS: Establishes the current layer through a unique identifier that is used throughout the OpenEmbedded build system to refer to the layer. In this example, the identifier “yoctobsp” is the representation for the container layer named “meta-yocto-bsp”.

    • BBFILE_PATTERN: Expands immediately during parsing to provide the directory of the layer.

    • BBFILE_PRIORITY: Establishes a priority to use for recipes in the layer when the OpenEmbedded build finds recipes of the same name in different layers.

    • LAYERVERSION: Establishes a version number for the layer. You can use this version number to specify this exact version of the layer as a dependency when using the LAYERDEPENDS variable.

    • LAYERDEPENDS: Lists all layers on which this layer depends (if any).

    • LAYERSERIES_COMPAT: Lists the Yocto Project releases for which the current version is compatible. This variable is a good way to indicate if your particular layer is current.


    A layer does not have to contain only recipes .bb or append files .bbappend. Generally, developers create layers using bitbake-layers create-layer. See “Creating a General Layer Using the bitbake-layers Script”, explaining how the layer.conf file is created from a template located in meta/lib/bblayers/templates/layer.conf. In fact, none of the variables set in layer.conf are mandatory, except when BBFILE_COLLECTIONS is present. In this case LAYERSERIES_COMPAT and BBFILE_PATTERN have to be defined too.

  4. Add Content: Depending on the type of layer, add the content. If the layer adds support for a machine, add the machine configuration in a conf/machine/ file within the layer. If the layer adds distro policy, add the distro configuration in a conf/distro/ file within the layer. If the layer introduces new recipes, put the recipes you need in recipes-* subdirectories within the layer.


    For an explanation of layer hierarchy that is compliant with the Yocto Project, see the “Example Filesystem Layout” section in the Yocto Project Board Support Package (BSP) Developer’s Guide.

  5. Optionally Test for Compatibility: If you want permission to use the Yocto Project Compatibility logo with your layer or application that uses your layer, perform the steps to apply for compatibility. See the “Making Sure Your Layer is Compatible With Yocto Project” section for more information.

3.2 Following Best Practices When Creating Layers

To create layers that are easier to maintain and that will not impact builds for other machines, you should consider the information in the following list:

  • Avoid “Overlaying” Entire Recipes from Other Layers in Your Configuration: In other words, do not copy an entire recipe into your layer and then modify it. Rather, use an append file (.bbappend) to override only those parts of the original recipe you need to modify.

  • Avoid Duplicating Include Files: Use append files (.bbappend) for each recipe that uses an include file. Or, if you are introducing a new recipe that requires the included file, use the path relative to the original layer directory to refer to the file. For example, use require recipes-core/package/file.inc instead of require file.inc. If you’re finding you have to overlay the include file, it could indicate a deficiency in the include file in the layer to which it originally belongs. If this is the case, you should try to address that deficiency instead of overlaying the include file. For example, you could address this by getting the maintainer of the include file to add a variable or variables to make it easy to override the parts needing to be overridden.

  • Structure Your Layers: Proper use of overrides within append files and placement of machine-specific files within your layer can ensure that a build is not using the wrong Metadata and negatively impacting a build for a different machine. Following are some examples:

    • Modify Variables to Support a Different Machine: Suppose you have a layer named meta-one that adds support for building machine “one”. To do so, you use an append file named base-files.bbappend and create a dependency on “foo” by altering the DEPENDS variable:

      DEPENDS = "foo"

      The dependency is created during any build that includes the layer meta-one. However, you might not want this dependency for all machines. For example, suppose you are building for machine “two” but your bblayers.conf file has the meta-one layer included. During the build, the base-files for machine “two” will also have the dependency on foo.

      To make sure your changes apply only when building machine “one”, use a machine override with the DEPENDS statement:

      DEPENDS:one = "foo"

      You should follow the same strategy when using :append and :prepend operations:

      DEPENDS:append:one = " foo"
      DEPENDS:prepend:one = "foo "

      As an actual example, here’s a snippet from the generic kernel include file linux-yocto.inc, wherein the kernel compile and link options are adjusted in the case of a subset of the supported architectures:

      DEPENDS:append:aarch64 = " libgcc"
      KERNEL_CC:append:aarch64 = " ${TOOLCHAIN_OPTIONS}"
      KERNEL_LD:append:aarch64 = " ${TOOLCHAIN_OPTIONS}"
      DEPENDS:append:nios2 = " libgcc"
      KERNEL_CC:append:nios2 = " ${TOOLCHAIN_OPTIONS}"
      KERNEL_LD:append:nios2 = " ${TOOLCHAIN_OPTIONS}"
      DEPENDS:append:arc = " libgcc"
      KERNEL_CC:append:arc = " ${TOOLCHAIN_OPTIONS}"
      KERNEL_LD:append:arc = " ${TOOLCHAIN_OPTIONS}"
      KERNEL_FEATURES:append:qemuall=" features/debug/printk.scc"
    • Place Machine-Specific Files in Machine-Specific Locations: When you have a base recipe, such as base-files.bb, that contains a SRC_URI statement to a file, you can use an append file to cause the build to use your own version of the file. For example, an append file in your layer at meta-one/recipes-core/base-files/base-files.bbappend could extend FILESPATH using FILESEXTRAPATHS as follows:

      FILESEXTRAPATHS:prepend := "${THISDIR}/${BPN}:"

      The build for machine “one” will pick up your machine-specific file as long as you have the file in meta-one/recipes-core/base-files/base-files/. However, if you are building for a different machine and the bblayers.conf file includes the meta-one layer and the location of your machine-specific file is the first location where that file is found according to FILESPATH, builds for all machines will also use that machine-specific file.

      You can make sure that a machine-specific file is used for a particular machine by putting the file in a subdirectory specific to the machine. For example, rather than placing the file in meta-one/recipes-core/base-files/base-files/ as shown above, put it in meta-one/recipes-core/base-files/base-files/one/. Not only does this make sure the file is used only when building for machine “one”, but the build process locates the file more quickly.

      In summary, you need to place all files referenced from SRC_URI in a machine-specific subdirectory within the layer in order to restrict those files to machine-specific builds.

  • Perform Steps to Apply for Yocto Project Compatibility: If you want permission to use the Yocto Project Compatibility logo with your layer or application that uses your layer, perform the steps to apply for compatibility. See the “Making Sure Your Layer is Compatible With Yocto Project” section for more information.

  • Follow the Layer Naming Convention: Store custom layers in a Git repository that use the meta-layer_name format.

  • Group Your Layers Locally: Clone your repository alongside other cloned meta directories from the Source Directory.

3.3 Making Sure Your Layer is Compatible With Yocto Project

When you create a layer used with the Yocto Project, it is advantageous to make sure that the layer interacts well with existing Yocto Project layers (i.e. the layer is compatible with the Yocto Project). Ensuring compatibility makes the layer easy to be consumed by others in the Yocto Project community and could allow you permission to use the Yocto Project Compatible Logo.


Only Yocto Project member organizations are permitted to use the Yocto Project Compatible Logo. The logo is not available for general use. For information on how to become a Yocto Project member organization, see the Yocto Project Website.

The Yocto Project Compatibility Program consists of a layer application process that requests permission to use the Yocto Project Compatibility Logo for your layer and application. The process consists of two parts:

  1. Successfully passing a script (yocto-check-layer) that when run against your layer, tests it against constraints based on experiences of how layers have worked in the real world and where pitfalls have been found. Getting a “PASS” result from the script is required for successful compatibility registration.

  2. Completion of an application acceptance form, which you can find at https://www.yoctoproject.org/webform/yocto-project-compatible-registration.

To be granted permission to use the logo, you need to satisfy the following:

  • Be able to check the box indicating that you got a “PASS” when running the script against your layer.

  • Answer “Yes” to the questions on the form or have an acceptable explanation for any questions answered “No”.

  • Be a Yocto Project Member Organization.

The remainder of this section presents information on the registration form and on the yocto-check-layer script.

3.3.1 Yocto Project Compatible Program Application

Use the form to apply for your layer’s approval. Upon successful application, you can use the Yocto Project Compatibility Logo with your layer and the application that uses your layer.

To access the form, use this link: https://www.yoctoproject.org/webform/yocto-project-compatible-registration. Follow the instructions on the form to complete your application.

The application consists of the following sections:

  • Contact Information: Provide your contact information as the fields require. Along with your information, provide the released versions of the Yocto Project for which your layer is compatible.

  • Acceptance Criteria: Provide “Yes” or “No” answers for each of the items in the checklist. There is space at the bottom of the form for any explanations for items for which you answered “No”.

  • Recommendations: Provide answers for the questions regarding Linux kernel use and build success.

3.3.2 yocto-check-layer Script

The yocto-check-layer script provides you a way to assess how compatible your layer is with the Yocto Project. You should run this script prior to using the form to apply for compatibility as described in the previous section. You need to achieve a “PASS” result in order to have your application form successfully processed.

The script divides tests into three areas: COMMON, BSP, and DISTRO. For example, given a distribution layer (DISTRO), the layer must pass both the COMMON and DISTRO related tests. Furthermore, if your layer is a BSP layer, the layer must pass the COMMON and BSP set of tests.

To execute the script, enter the following commands from your build directory:

$ source oe-init-build-env
$ yocto-check-layer your_layer_directory

Be sure to provide the actual directory for your layer as part of the command.

Entering the command causes the script to determine the type of layer and then to execute a set of specific tests against the layer. The following list overviews the test:

  • common.test_readme: Tests if a README file exists in the layer and the file is not empty.

  • common.test_parse: Tests to make sure that BitBake can parse the files without error (i.e. bitbake -p).

  • common.test_show_environment: Tests that the global or per-recipe environment is in order without errors (i.e. bitbake -e).

  • common.test_world: Verifies that bitbake world works.

  • common.test_signatures: Tests to be sure that BSP and DISTRO layers do not come with recipes that change signatures.

  • common.test_layerseries_compat: Verifies layer compatibility is set properly.

  • bsp.test_bsp_defines_machines: Tests if a BSP layer has machine configurations.

  • bsp.test_bsp_no_set_machine: Tests to ensure a BSP layer does not set the machine when the layer is added.

  • bsp.test_machine_world: Verifies that bitbake world works regardless of which machine is selected.

  • bsp.test_machine_signatures: Verifies that building for a particular machine affects only the signature of tasks specific to that machine.

  • distro.test_distro_defines_distros: Tests if a DISTRO layer has distro configurations.

  • distro.test_distro_no_set_distros: Tests to ensure a DISTRO layer does not set the distribution when the layer is added.

3.4 Enabling Your Layer

Before the OpenEmbedded build system can use your new layer, you need to enable it. To enable your layer, simply add your layer’s path to the BBLAYERS variable in your conf/bblayers.conf file, which is found in the Build Directory. The following example shows how to enable your new meta-mylayer layer (note how your new layer exists outside of the official poky repository which you would have checked out earlier):

# POKY_BBLAYERS_CONF_VERSION is increased each time build/conf/bblayers.conf
# changes incompatibly
    /home/user/poky/meta \
    /home/user/poky/meta-poky \
    /home/user/poky/meta-yocto-bsp \
    /home/user/mystuff/meta-mylayer \

BitBake parses each conf/layer.conf file from the top down as specified in the BBLAYERS variable within the conf/bblayers.conf file. During the processing of each conf/layer.conf file, BitBake adds the recipes, classes and configurations contained within the particular layer to the source directory.

3.5 Appending Other Layers Metadata With Your Layer

A recipe that appends Metadata to another recipe is called a BitBake append file. A BitBake append file uses the .bbappend file type suffix, while the corresponding recipe to which Metadata is being appended uses the .bb file type suffix.

You can use a .bbappend file in your layer to make additions or changes to the content of another layer’s recipe without having to copy the other layer’s recipe into your layer. Your .bbappend file resides in your layer, while the main .bb recipe file to which you are appending Metadata resides in a different layer.

Being able to append information to an existing recipe not only avoids duplication, but also automatically applies recipe changes from a different layer into your layer. If you were copying recipes, you would have to manually merge changes as they occur.

When you create an append file, you must use the same root name as the corresponding recipe file. For example, the append file someapp_3.1.bbappend must apply to someapp_3.1.bb. This means the original recipe and append filenames are version number-specific. If the corresponding recipe is renamed to update to a newer version, you must also rename and possibly update the corresponding .bbappend as well. During the build process, BitBake displays an error on starting if it detects a .bbappend file that does not have a corresponding recipe with a matching name. See the BB_DANGLINGAPPENDS_WARNONLY variable for information on how to handle this error.

3.5.1 Overlaying a File Using Your Layer

As an example, consider the main formfactor recipe and a corresponding formfactor append file both from the Source Directory. Here is the main formfactor recipe, which is named formfactor_0.0.bb and located in the “meta” layer at meta/recipes-bsp/formfactor:

SUMMARY = "Device formfactor information"
DESCRIPTION = "A formfactor configuration file provides information about the \
target hardware for which the image is being built and information that the \
build system cannot obtain from other sources such as the kernel."
SECTION = "base"
LIC_FILES_CHKSUM = "file://${COREBASE}/meta/COPYING.MIT;md5=3da9cfbcb788c80a0384361b4de20420"
PR = "r45"

SRC_URI = "file://config file://machconfig"
S = "${WORKDIR}"


do_install() {
        # Install file only if it has contents
        install -d ${D}${sysconfdir}/formfactor/
        install -m 0644 ${S}/config ${D}${sysconfdir}/formfactor/
        if [ -s "${S}/machconfig" ]; then
                install -m 0644 ${S}/machconfig ${D}${sysconfdir}/formfactor/

In the main recipe, note the SRC_URI variable, which tells the OpenEmbedded build system where to find files during the build.

Following is the append file, which is named formfactor_0.0.bbappend and is from the Raspberry Pi BSP Layer named meta-raspberrypi. The file is in the layer at recipes-bsp/formfactor:


By default, the build system uses the FILESPATH variable to locate files. This append file extends the locations by setting the FILESEXTRAPATHS variable. Setting this variable in the .bbappend file is the most reliable and recommended method for adding directories to the search path used by the build system to find files.

The statement in this example extends the directories to include ${THISDIR}/${PN}, which resolves to a directory named formfactor in the same directory in which the append file resides (i.e. meta-raspberrypi/recipes-bsp/formfactor. This implies that you must have the supporting directory structure set up that will contain any files or patches you will be including from the layer.

Using the immediate expansion assignment operator := is important because of the reference to THISDIR. The trailing colon character is important as it ensures that items in the list remain colon-separated.


BitBake automatically defines the THISDIR variable. You should never set this variable yourself. Using “:prepend” as part of the FILESEXTRAPATHS ensures your path will be searched prior to other paths in the final list.

Also, not all append files add extra files. Many append files simply allow to add build options (e.g. systemd). For these cases, your append file would not even use the FILESEXTRAPATHS statement.

The end result of this .bbappend file is that on a Raspberry Pi, where rpi will exist in the list of OVERRIDES, the file meta-raspberrypi/recipes-bsp/formfactor/formfactor/rpi/machconfig will be used during do_fetch and the test for a non-zero file size in do_install will return true, and the file will be installed.

3.5.2 Installing Additional Files Using Your Layer

As another example, consider the main xserver-xf86-config recipe and a corresponding xserver-xf86-config append file both from the Source Directory. Here is the main xserver-xf86-config recipe, which is named xserver-xf86-config_0.1.bb and located in the “meta” layer at meta/recipes-graphics/xorg-xserver:

SUMMARY = "X.Org X server configuration file"
HOMEPAGE = "http://www.x.org"
SECTION = "x11/base"
LIC_FILES_CHKSUM = "file://${COREBASE}/meta/COPYING.MIT;md5=3da9cfbcb788c80a0384361b4de20420"
PR = "r33"

SRC_URI = "file://xorg.conf"

S = "${WORKDIR}"

CONFFILES:${PN} = "${sysconfdir}/X11/xorg.conf"


do_install () {
     if test -s ${WORKDIR}/xorg.conf; then
             install -d ${D}/${sysconfdir}/X11
             install -m 0644 ${WORKDIR}/xorg.conf ${D}/${sysconfdir}/X11/

Following is the append file, which is named xserver-xf86-config_%.bbappend and is from the Raspberry Pi BSP Layer named meta-raspberrypi. The file is in the layer at recipes-graphics/xorg-xserver:


SRC_URI:append:rpi = " \
    file://xorg.conf.d/98-pitft.conf \
    file://xorg.conf.d/99-calibration.conf \
do_install:append:rpi () {
    PITFT="${@bb.utils.contains("MACHINE_FEATURES", "pitft", "1", "0", d)}"
    if [ "${PITFT}" = "1" ]; then
        install -d ${D}/${sysconfdir}/X11/xorg.conf.d/
        install -m 0644 ${WORKDIR}/xorg.conf.d/98-pitft.conf ${D}/${sysconfdir}/X11/xorg.conf.d/
        install -m 0644 ${WORKDIR}/xorg.conf.d/99-calibration.conf ${D}/${sysconfdir}/X11/xorg.conf.d/

FILES:${PN}:append:rpi = " ${sysconfdir}/X11/xorg.conf.d/*"

Building off of the previous example, we once again are setting the FILESEXTRAPATHS variable. In this case we are also using SRC_URI to list additional source files to use when rpi is found in the list of OVERRIDES. The do_install task will then perform a check for an additional MACHINE_FEATURES that if set will cause these additional files to be installed. These additional files are listed in FILES so that they will be packaged.

3.6 Prioritizing Your Layer

Each layer is assigned a priority value. Priority values control which layer takes precedence if there are recipe files with the same name in multiple layers. For these cases, the recipe file from the layer with a higher priority number takes precedence. Priority values also affect the order in which multiple .bbappend files for the same recipe are applied. You can either specify the priority manually, or allow the build system to calculate it based on the layer’s dependencies.

To specify the layer’s priority manually, use the BBFILE_PRIORITY variable and append the layer’s root name:

BBFILE_PRIORITY_mylayer = "1"


It is possible for a recipe with a lower version number PV in a layer that has a higher priority to take precedence.

Also, the layer priority does not currently affect the precedence order of .conf or .bbclass files. Future versions of BitBake might address this.

3.7 Managing Layers

You can use the BitBake layer management tool bitbake-layers to provide a view into the structure of recipes across a multi-layer project. Being able to generate output that reports on configured layers with their paths and priorities and on .bbappend files and their applicable recipes can help to reveal potential problems.

For help on the BitBake layer management tool, use the following command:

$ bitbake-layers --help

The following list describes the available commands:

  • help: Displays general help or help on a specified command.

  • show-layers: Shows the current configured layers.

  • show-overlayed: Lists overlayed recipes. A recipe is overlayed when a recipe with the same name exists in another layer that has a higher layer priority.

  • show-recipes: Lists available recipes and the layers that provide them.

  • show-appends: Lists .bbappend files and the recipe files to which they apply.

  • show-cross-depends: Lists dependency relationships between recipes that cross layer boundaries.

  • add-layer: Adds a layer to bblayers.conf.

  • remove-layer: Removes a layer from bblayers.conf

  • flatten: Flattens the layer configuration into a separate output directory. Flattening your layer configuration builds a “flattened” directory that contains the contents of all layers, with any overlayed recipes removed and any .bbappend files appended to the corresponding recipes. You might have to perform some manual cleanup of the flattened layer as follows:

    • Non-recipe files (such as patches) are overwritten. The flatten command shows a warning for these files.

    • Anything beyond the normal layer setup has been added to the layer.conf file. Only the lowest priority layer’s layer.conf is used.

    • Overridden and appended items from .bbappend files need to be cleaned up. The contents of each .bbappend end up in the flattened recipe. However, if there are appended or changed variable values, you need to tidy these up yourself. Consider the following example. Here, the bitbake-layers command adds the line #### bbappended ... so that you know where the following lines originate:

      DESCRIPTION = "A useful utility"
      EXTRA_OECONF = "--enable-something"
      #### bbappended from meta-anotherlayer ####
      DESCRIPTION = "Customized utility"
      EXTRA_OECONF += "--enable-somethingelse"

      Ideally, you would tidy up these utilities as follows:

      DESCRIPTION = "Customized utility"
      EXTRA_OECONF = "--enable-something --enable-somethingelse"
  • layerindex-fetch: Fetches a layer from a layer index, along with its dependent layers, and adds the layers to the conf/bblayers.conf file.

  • layerindex-show-depends: Finds layer dependencies from the layer index.

  • create-layer: Creates a basic layer.

3.8 Creating a General Layer Using the bitbake-layers Script

The bitbake-layers script with the create-layer subcommand simplifies creating a new general layer.


  • For information on BSP layers, see the “BSP Layers” section in the Yocto Project Board Specific (BSP) Developer’s Guide.

  • In order to use a layer with the OpenEmbedded build system, you need to add the layer to your bblayers.conf configuration file. See the “Adding a Layer Using the bitbake-layers Script” section for more information.

The default mode of the script’s operation with this subcommand is to create a layer with the following:

  • A layer priority of 6.

  • A conf subdirectory that contains a layer.conf file.

  • A recipes-example subdirectory that contains a further subdirectory named example, which contains an example.bb recipe file.

  • A COPYING.MIT, which is the license statement for the layer. The script assumes you want to use the MIT license, which is typical for most layers, for the contents of the layer itself.

  • A README file, which is a file describing the contents of your new layer.

In its simplest form, you can use the following command form to create a layer. The command creates a layer whose name corresponds to “your_layer_name” in the current directory:

$ bitbake-layers create-layer your_layer_name

As an example, the following command creates a layer named meta-scottrif in your home directory:

$ cd /usr/home
$ bitbake-layers create-layer meta-scottrif
NOTE: Starting bitbake server...
Add your new layer with 'bitbake-layers add-layer meta-scottrif'

If you want to set the priority of the layer to other than the default value of “6”, you can either use the --priority option or you can edit the BBFILE_PRIORITY value in the conf/layer.conf after the script creates it. Furthermore, if you want to give the example recipe file some name other than the default, you can use the --example-recipe-name option.

The easiest way to see how the bitbake-layers create-layer command works is to experiment with the script. You can also read the usage information by entering the following:

$ bitbake-layers create-layer --help
NOTE: Starting bitbake server...
usage: bitbake-layers create-layer [-h] [--priority PRIORITY]
                                   [--example-recipe-name EXAMPLERECIPE]

Create a basic layer

positional arguments:
  layerdir              Layer directory to create

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  --priority PRIORITY, -p PRIORITY
                        Layer directory to create
  --example-recipe-name EXAMPLERECIPE, -e EXAMPLERECIPE
                        Filename of the example recipe

3.9 Adding a Layer Using the bitbake-layers Script

Once you create your general layer, you must add it to your bblayers.conf file. Adding the layer to this configuration file makes the OpenEmbedded build system aware of your layer so that it can search it for metadata.

Add your layer by using the bitbake-layers add-layer command:

$ bitbake-layers add-layer your_layer_name

Here is an example that adds a layer named meta-scottrif to the configuration file. Following the command that adds the layer is another bitbake-layers command that shows the layers that are in your bblayers.conf file:

$ bitbake-layers add-layer meta-scottrif
NOTE: Starting bitbake server...
Parsing recipes: 100% |##########################################################| Time: 0:00:49
Parsing of 1441 .bb files complete (0 cached, 1441 parsed). 2055 targets, 56 skipped, 0 masked, 0 errors.
$ bitbake-layers show-layers
NOTE: Starting bitbake server...
layer                 path                                      priority
meta                  /home/scottrif/poky/meta                  5
meta-poky             /home/scottrif/poky/meta-poky             5
meta-yocto-bsp        /home/scottrif/poky/meta-yocto-bsp        5
workspace             /home/scottrif/poky/build/workspace       99
meta-scottrif         /home/scottrif/poky/build/meta-scottrif   6

Adding the layer to this file enables the build system to locate the layer during the build.


During a build, the OpenEmbedded build system looks in the layers from the top of the list down to the bottom in that order.