Auto-formatting source code using AStyle

Today I talk about how to get AStyle 2.04 the awesome code beautifier working with Qt Creator 3.1, and towards the end share my configuration settings (C++).


I have a particularly strange habit to code: I can’t stand it if it doesn’t look pretty. I make a fuss about formatting, on whether code is readable and properly formatted by consistent and standard code conventions. In short, messy code is disgusting to me.

I doubt I’m the only one like this (:

For awhile now I’ve been manually formatting the code, little seemingly insignificant stuff point of adding spaces between operators and removing spaces around parenthesis, until I realize how it was actually kinda unproductive.

Enter AStyle

I setup Qt Creator via this link. Apparently Qt Creator 3.1 already has beautifier just setting around, but disabled for some reason. You then need to download AStyle and set the exe accordingly.

Then… after that I started wandering around the web wondering where to get a predefined set of formatting options for it. It was actually quite hard to find what I was looking for, truth be told. In the end I just look up the documentation and make it work for me. It wasn’t too bad; was actually kinda fun seeing the code just fixed up itself.

So here is my self-defined style (C++):


My only gripe was that the only way to format the code I have to go through the menu:

Tools > Beautifier > Artistic Style > Format Current File.

I mean, I wanted to format a dozen files at once. Couldn’t there be a faster way? I can’t assign a keyboard shortcut to this command.

…but I’m glad nonetheless 😀

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