Bison is a parser generator in the style of yacc(1). It should be upwardly compatible with input files designed for yacc.
Input files should follow the yacc convention of ending in .y. Unlike yacc, the generated files do not have fixed names, but instead use the prefix of the input file. Moreover, if you need to put C++ code in the input file, you can end his name by a C++-like extension (.ypp or .y++), then bison will follow your extension to name the output file (.cpp or .c++). For instance, a grammar description file named parse.yxx would produce the generated parser in a file named parse.tab.cxx, instead of yacc's y.tab.c or old Bison version's parse.tab.c.
This description of the options that can be given to bison is adapted from the node Invocation in the bison.texinfo manual, which should be taken as authoritative.
Bison supports both traditional single-letter options and mnemonic long option names. Long option names are indicated with -- instead of -. Abbreviations for option names are allowed as long as they are unique. When a long option takes an argument, like --file-prefix, connect the option name and the argument with =.
Generate LALR(1) and GLR parsers.
Mandatory arguments to long options are mandatory for short options too. The same is true for optional arguments.
- -h, --help
- display this help and exit
- -V, --version
- output version information and exit
- output directory containing locale-dependent data
- output directory containing skeletons and XSLT
- -y, --yacc
- emulate POSIX Yacc
- -W, --warnings=[CATEGORY]
- report the warnings falling in CATEGORY
- -L, --language=LANGUAGE
- specify the output programming language (this is an experimental feature)
- -S, --skeleton=FILE
- specify the skeleton to use
- -t, --debug
- instrument the parser for debugging
- enable locations computation
- -p, --name-prefix=PREFIX
- prepend PREFIX to the external symbols
- -l, --no-lines
- don't generate '#line' directives
- -k, --token-table
- include a table of token names
- also produce a header file
- likewise but cannot specify FILE (for POSIX Yacc)
- -r, --report=THINGS
- also produce details on the automaton
- write report to FILE
- -v, --verbose
- same as '--report=state'
- -b, --file-prefix=PREFIX
- specify a PREFIX for output files
- -o, --output=FILE
- leave output to FILE
- -g, --graph[=FILE]
- also output a graph of the automaton
- -x, --xml[=FILE]
- also output an XML report of the automaton (the XML schema is experimental)
Warning categories include:
- unset or unused midrule values
- incompatibilities with POSIX YACC
- all the warnings
- turn off warnings in CATEGORY
- turn off all the warnings
- treat warnings as errors
THINGS is a list of comma separated words that can include:
- describe the states
- complete the core item sets with their closure
- explicitly associate lookahead tokens to items
- describe shift/reduce conflicts solving
- include all the above information
- disable the report
lex(1), flex(1), yacc(1).
The full documentation for bison is maintained as a Texinfo manual. If the info and bison programs are properly installed at your site, the command
- info bison
should give you access to the complete manual.