Building EVM LLVM

The project compiles like other LLVM projects. The target's name is EVM, but since it is not yet finalized, you have to specify -DLLVM_EXPERIMENTAL_TARGETS_TO_BUILD=EVM when you compile it.

In short, you can use the following to build the backend:

git clone
cd evm_llvm
git checkout EVM
mkdir build && cd build
make -j8

Let's try to use a simple C file to test our compiler:

unsigned x;
int abc(unsigned a, unsigned b, unsigned c) {
  if (c > 0) {
    return a + x;
  } else {
    return a + b;

Prerequisite: You have to install clang and use it to generate LLVM IR first:

clang -S -emit-llvm test.c

This will generate a test.ll file which should be the LLVM IR equivalent of our test.c file. Then we can generate EVM binary or assembly from it. In order to use the backend to generate EVM assembly, you have to specify -mtriple=evm when calling llc. An example is as follows:

./build/bin/llc -mtriple=evm test.ll -o test.s

The generated test.s file contains the compiled EVM assembly code. Note that the generated code is the function body itself. In order to generate a complete smart contract source code we need to use a smart contract creator function, which we will talk about it in another page.

Notice that you can also get the binary code of the function body by emitting an object file:

./build/bin/llc -mtriple=evm -filetype=obj test.ll -o test.o