[ios] Xcode 12, building for iOS Simulator, but linking in object file built for iOS, for architecture arm64

Trying to get a large (and working on Xcode 11!) project building in Xcode 12 (beta 5) to prep for iOS 14. Codebase was previously Obj-C, but now contains both Obj-C and Swift, and uses pods that are Obj-C and/or Swift as well.

I have pulled the new beta of cocoapods with Xcode 12 support (currently 1.10.0.beta 2).

Pod install is successful. When I do a build, I get the following error on a pod framework:

"building for iOS Simulator, but linking in object file built for iOS, for architecture arm64"

When I go run lipo -info on the framework, it has: armv7s armv7 i386 x86_64 arm64.

Previously, the project had Valid Architectures set to: armv7, armv7s and arm64.

In Xcode 12, that setting goes away, as per Apple's documentation. Architectures is set to $(ARCHS_STANDARD). I have nothing set in excluded architectures.

Anyone have an idea of what may be going on here? I have not been able to reproduce this with a simpler project yet.

This question is related to ios xcode xcode12 xcode12beta5 xcode12beta6

The answer is

The problem here are the Valid architectures in Xcode 11, open the project in Xcode 11 and change the Valid architectures value to $(ARCHS_STANDARD) for both your project, target and Pods, re-open the project in Xcode 12 and build

The Valid Architectures build setting has been removed in Xcode 12. If you had values in this build setting, they're causing a problem and need to be removed.

I was able to "clear out" the VALID_ARCHS build setting by adding it back in as a User-Defined build setting (with no values), running the project (which failed), and then deleting the VALID_ARCHS build setting. After that, I was able to run on the simulator.

My Architectures build setting is Standard Architectures.

You can add a User-Defined Setting from the plus button in Build Settings:

User-Defined Setting

To get this working for Calabash automated tests

There is a pull request up to fix the issue of xcode 12 not working with calabash https://github.com/calabash/run_loop/pull/757

A temporary solution is to use this WIP branch, although it is not great to have to use this as it is a draft PR. Xcode 12 support for Calabash will hopefully come in the future.

Change in your Gemfile

gem "run_loop"


gem 'run_loop', git: 'https://github.com/calabash/run_loop.git', branch: 'xcode_14_support'

For me the following setting worked:

Build Settings >> Excluded Architectures

added "arm64" to both Release and Debug mode for "Any iOS Simulator SDK" option.

enter image description here

I solve problem by adding "arm64" in "Excluded Architectures" for both project target and pod target.

Xcode -> Target Project -> Build Setting -> Excluded Architectures > "arm64"

Xcode -> Pod Target -> Build Setting -> Excluded Architectures > "arm64"

I was having issues building frameworks from the command line. My framework depends on other frameworks that were missing support for ARM-based simulators. I ended up excluding support for ARM-based simulators until I upgrade my dependencies.

I needed the EXCLUDED_ARCHS=arm64 flag when building the framework for simulators from CLI.

xcodebuild archive -project [project] -scheme [scheme] -destination "generic/platform=iOS Simulator" -archivePath "archives/[scheme]-iOS-Simulator" SKIP_INSTALL=NO BUILD_LIBRARY_FOR_DISTRIBUTION=YES EXCLUDED_ARCHS=arm64

Set the "Build Active Architecture Only"(ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH) build setting to yes, xcode is asking for arm64 because of Silicon MAC architecture which is arm64.

arm64 has been added as simulator arch in Xcode12 to support Silicon MAC.


In you xxx.framework podspec file add follow config avoid pod package contains arm64 similator archs

s.pod_target_xcconfig = { 'EXCLUDED_ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]' => 'arm64' }
s.user_target_xcconfig = { 'EXCLUDED_ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]' => 'arm64' }

In my case: Xcode 12

I set empty values on EXCLUDED_ARCHS and set ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH Debug = YES Release = NO Project's Build Setting

and I included this in my Podfile:

post_install do |installer|
    installer.pods_project.targets.each do |target|
        target.build_configurations.each do |config|
            config.build_settings["EXCLUDED_ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]"] = "arm64"

It runs on my Simulator iPhone 8 (iOS 12) and iPhone 11 Pro Max (iOS 14) and on my device iPhone 7 Plus (iOS 13.4)

After trying almost every post on this thread and reading through apple developer forums I found only one solution worked for me.

I am building a universal framework that is consumed in a swift app. I was unable to build to the Simulator without architecture errors.

In my Framework project I have a Universal Framework task in my build phases, if this is the case for you

  • Add the following to your xcodebuild task inside the build phase: EXCLUDED_ARCHS="arm64"

Next you have to change the following project Build Settings:

  • Delete the VALID_ARCHS user defined setting

*** If you are developing a framework and have a demo app as well, this setting has to be turned on in both projects.

If you have trouble in Xcode 12 with simulators, not real device, yes you have to remove VALID_ARCHS settings because it's not supported anymore. Go to "builds settings", search "VALID_ARCHS" and remove the user-defined properties. Do it in every target you have.

Still, you may need to add a script at the bottom of your podfile to have pods compiling with the right architecture and deployment target :

post_install do |installer|
  installer.pods_project.targets.each do |target|
    target.build_configurations.each do |config|
      config.build_settings.delete 'IPHONEOS_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET'
      config.build_settings['ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH'] = 'NO'

For Pod Developers In your Podspec add:

s.pod_target_xcconfig = { 'EXCLUDED_ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]' => 'arm64' }
s.user_target_xcconfig = { 'EXCLUDED_ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]' => 'arm64' }

Then in your sample project Sample project files settings

See it working in this project

Switch Build Configuration back to Debug mode or turn on Build Active Architecture Only for both Debug and Release mode. The reason is your library/framework doesn't support new Simulator architecture ARM64 (run on Mac with Apple Silicon processor)

After trying and searching different solutions, I think the most safest way is adding the following code at the end of the Podfile

post_install do |pi|
   pi.pods_project.targets.each do |t|
       t.build_configurations.each do |bc|
          bc.build_settings['ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]'] =  `uname -m`

This way you only override the iOS simulator's compiler architecture as your current cpu's architecture. Compared to others, this solution will also work on computers with Apple Silicon.

Only add Any iOS Simulator SDK -> x86_64 to Project's Build Settings -> VALID_ARCHS works for me.

Xcode version: 12.1 (12A7403)

enter image description here

If your project includes some frameworks that don't support x86_64.

  • You can add these framework names(xxx.framework) to Target -> Build Settings -> Excluded Source File Names -> Debug -> Any iOS Simulator SDK.
  • And then modify the Framework Search Paths to delete the paths of these frameworks for Debug -> Any iOS Simulator SDK.

These two settings can avoid Xcode to build and link these frameworks on simulator mode.

enter image description here

enter image description here

After upgrading to Xcode 12 I was still able to build for a real device, but not the simulator. The Podfile build was working only for the real device.

I deleted VALID_ARCHS under Build Settings > User-Defined and it worked! Bashing my head for some time before finding this.

I understand the issue with arm64 and Xcode 12 and I was able to resolve build issues by excluding the arm64 architecture for iPhone Simulator or by setting ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH for Release scheme. However I still have problems to push my framework using pod repo push.

I found out that setting s.pod_target_xcconfig in my podspec does not apply this setting to dependencies defined in the same podspec. I can see it in the dummy App project that Cocoapods is generating during the validation. Cocoapods validation is running release scheme for simulator and this is failing when one or more dependencies doesn't exclude arm64 or is not set to build active architecture only.

A solution could be to force Cocoapods to add post install script while validating the project or let it build Debug scheme, because the Debug scheme is only building active architecture.

I ended up using Xcode 11 to release my pod to pass the validation. You can download Xcode 11 from developer.apple.com, copy it to Applications folder as Xcode11.app and switch using sudo xcode-select --switch /Applications/Xcode11.app/Contents/Developer. Don't forget to switch back when done.

I found that

  1. Using Rosetta (Find Xcode in Finder > Get Info > Open using Rosetta)
  2. Build Active Architecture Only set to YES for everything, in both Project and Target
  3. And including this in the podfile:
post_install do |installer|
  installer.pods_project.targets.each do |target|
    target.build_configurations.each do |config|
      config.build_settings["ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH"] = "YES"

worked for me.

We had both Pods and SPM and they didn't work with any of the combinations of other answers. My colleagues all use Intel MacBooks and we haven't tested this config on their computers, though.

After trying a lot useless answers online. This works for me.

First, generates x86_64 for Pod projects!!!!

post_install do |installer|
    installer.pods_project.targets.each do |target|
        target.build_configurations.each do |config|
            config.build_settings['ARCHS'] = "arm64 x86_64"

Second, add "x86_64" for VALID_ARCHS

enter image description here

On Build Settings search VALID_ARCH then press delete. This should work for me with Xcode 12.0.1

VALID_ARCH on build settings

Xcode 12

Removing VALID_ARCH from Build settings under User-Defined group work for me.

enter image description here

Sharing the solution which worked for me, which may help someone

Issue when compiling for simulator:

building for iOS Simulator, but linking in object file built for iOS, for architecture arm64

XCODE 12.1, POD 1.9.1

My Project structure

  • Main Target
  • Share Extension
  • Notifiction service extension
  • Submodule, Custom Framework
  • Podfile
  1. Add arm64 to Build settings -> Exclude Architecture in all the targets.

enter image description here

  1. Removed arm64 from VALID_ARCHS and added x86_64 in all the targets.

enter image description here

  1. Add following code in podfile

    post_install do |installer|
        installer.pods_project.build_configurations.each do |config|
        config.build_settings["EXCLUDED_ARCHS[sdk=iphonesimulator*]"] = "arm64"
  2. Did pod update, deleted podfile.lock, and did pod install

  3. Do clean build.

Found a solution! https://developer.apple.com/forums/thread/657913

If you set excluded architectures for the simulator to arm64 it will compile.

excluding architectures for simulator

In my case I was trying to run on an watchOS 7 simulator in Relese mode but the iOS 14 simulator was in Debug mode.

So simply putting both sims in Debug/Release mode solved the problem for me!

It worked for me when I set $(ARCHS_STANDARD) for VALID_ARCHS for Debug for Any iOS Simulator SDK. Also I have set YES for ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH for Debug.

enter image description here

After excluding arm64 I always got ARCHS[@]: unbound variable. For me the only solution was to add x86_64 to the target build setting as mentioned here Problems after upgrading to Xcode 12:ld: building for iOS Simulator, but linking in dylib built for iOS, architecture arm64 You also might remove the exclude arm64 you added before.

I believe I found the answer. Per the Xcode 12 beta 6 release notes:

"The Build Settings editor no longer includes the Valid Architectures build setting (VALID_ARCHS), and its use is discouraged. Instead, there is a new Excluded Architectures build setting (EXCLUDED_ARCHS). If a project includes VALID_ARCHS, the setting is displayed in the User-Defined section of the Build Settings editor. (15145028)"

I was able to resolve this issue by manually editing the project file (I could not figure out how to remove the item from the project file using Xcode) and removing all lines referring to VALID_ARCHS. After that, I am able to build for the simulator fine.

I realise this question is a little old, but the proposed answers are outdated/incorrect.

You should initially try to update both CocoaPods and the dependencies for your library/app, and then, if that doesn't work, contact the vendors of any dependencies you are using to see if they have an update in progress to add support for arm64 Simulator slices on M1 Macs.

There are a lot of answers on here marked as correct suggesting that you should exclude arm64 from the list of supported architectures. This is at best a very temporary workaround, and at worst it will spread this issue to other consumers of your libraries. If you exclude the arm64 Simulator slice, there will be performance impacts on apps that you're developing in the Simulator (which in turn can lead to reduced battery time for your shiny new M1 kit while you're developing your amazing ideas).


Set "Build Active Architecture Only (ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH)" to Yes for your libraries/apps, even for release mode.

While trying to identify the root cause of the issue I realized some fun facts about Xcode 12.

  1. Xcode 12 is actually the stepping stone for Apple Silicon which unfortunately is not yet available (when the answer was written). But with that platform we are gonna get arm64 based macOS where simulators will also run on arm64 architecture unlike the present Intel based x86_64 architecture.

  2. Xcode usually depends on the "Run Destination" to build its libraries/apps. So when a simulator is chosen as the "Run Destination", it builds the app for available simulator architectures and when a device is chosen as the "Run Destination" it builds for the architecture that the device supports (arm*).

  3. xcodebuild, in the Xcode 12+ build system considers arm64 as a valid architecture for simulator to support Apple Silicon. So when a simulator is chosen as the run destination, it can potentially try to compile/link your libs/apps against arm64 based simulators, as well. So it sends clang(++) some -target flag like arm64-apple-ios13.0-simulator in <architecture>-<os>-<sdk>-<destination> format and clang tries to build/link against arm64 based simulator that eventually fails on Intel based mac.

  4. But xcodebuild tries this only for Release builds. Why? Because, "Build Active Architecture Only (ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH)" build settings is usually set to "No" for the "Release" configuration only. And that means xcodebuild will try to build all architectural variants of your libs/apps for the selected run destination for release builds. And for the Simulator run destination, it will includes both x86_64 and arm64 now on, since arm64 in Xcode 12+ is also a supported architecture for simulators to support Apple Silicon.

Simply putting, Xcode will fail to build your app anytime it tries the command line, xcodebuild, (which defaults to release build, see the general tab of your project setting) or otherwise and tries to build all architectural variants supported by the run destination. So a simple workaround to this issue is to set "Build Active Architecture Only (ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH)" to Yes in your libraries/apps, even for release mode.

enter image description here enter image description here

If the libraries are included as Pods and you have access to .podspec you can simply set:

spec.pod_target_xcconfig = { 'ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH' => 'YES' }

spec.user_target_xcconfig = { 'ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH' => 'YES' } # not recommended

I personally don't like the second line since pods shouldn't pollute the target project and it could be overridden in the target settings, itself. So it should be the responsibility of the consumer project to override the setting by some means. However, this could be necessary for successful linting of podspecs.

However, if you don't have access to the .podspec, you can always update the settings during installation of the pods:

post_install do |installer|
  installer.pods_project.targets.each do |target|
    target.build_configurations.each do |config|
      config.build_settings["ONLY_ACTIVE_ARCH"] = "YES"

One thing I was concerned about that what will be the impact of this when we actually archive the libs/apps. During archiving apps usually take the "Release" configuration and since this will be creating a release build considering only the active architecture of the current run destination, with this approach, we may lose the slices for armv7, armv7s, etc from target build. However, I noticed the documentation says (highlighted in the attached picture) that this setting will be ignored when we choose "Generic iOS Device/Any Device" as the run destination, since it doesn't define any specific architecture. So I guess we should be good if we archive our app choosing that as a run destination.

1.Add arm64 to Build settings -> Exclude Architecture in all the targets.

Xcode ScreenShoot

2.Close Xcode and follow the steps below to open

  1. Right-click on Xcode in Finder
  2. Get Info
  3. Open with Rosetta

In my case:

I had 4 configurations(+ DebugQa and ReleaseQa) Cocoapods is used as a dependency Manager

For Debug, I gathered on the device and in the simulator, and on qa only on the device.

It helped to set BuildActiveArchitecture to yes in PodsProject

Updates: Oct 2020

You can simply set arm64 only for Debug > Simulator - iOS 14.O SDK under Excluded Architecture.

enter image description here

Please, don't forget to clean the build folder after you add arm64 to excluded architecture.

Add line "arm64" (without quotes) to path: Xcode -> Project -> Build settings -> Architectures -> Excluded architectures Also, do the same for Pods. In both cases for both debug and release fields.

or in detail...

Errors mentioned here while deploying to simulator using Xcode 12 are also one of the things which have affected me. Just right-clicking on each of my projects and showing in finder, opening the .xcodeproj in Atom, then going through the .pbxproj and removing all of the VALIDARCHS settings. This was is what got it working for me. Tried a few of the other suggestions (excluding arm64, Build Active Architecture Only) which seemed to get my build further but ultimately leave me at another error. Having VALIDARCH settings lying around is probably the best thing to check for first.

I was also experiencing the same issue with specific library that was installed through carthage. For those who are using Carthage, as Carthage doesn't work out of the box with Xcode 12, this document will guide through a workaround that works for most cases. Well, shortly, Carthage builds fat frameworks, which means that the framework contains binaries for all supported architectures. Until Apple Sillicon was introduced it all worked just fine, but now there is a conflict as there are duplicate architectures (arm64 for devices and arm64 for simulator). This means that Carthage cannot link architecture specific frameworks to a single fat framework.

You can follow the instruction here. Carthage XCODE 12

Then after you configure the Carthage. Put the arm64 in the "Excluded Architectures" on build settings. enter image description here

Try to run your project using simulator. Simulator should run without any errors.

Xcode 12.3

I solved this problem by setting Validate Workspace to Yes

enter image description here

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