1)  I want to know the simplest way (and the minimal way) to compile PDFTeX on 
Windows.  From the manual, I see that you have to download

web-7.3.tar.gz
web2c-7.3.tar.gz
pdftex.tar.gz

However, this assumes that you have ./configure available (means UNIX or 
Cygwin).  While I have been using Linux for the past two years, I'm afraid, I 
am too incompetent, dumb, lazy, stupid, and stubborn to learn autoconf and 
autotools---I want to know exactly what steps are performed while compiling 
the program and it would be best understood if I had a simple Visual C++ 
project file to work with.

I want to be able to compile pdfTeX from sources using an already available 
DSP (MS Visual C++ project file)---this means it should somehow use an 
already existing config.h file.

I downloaded the MikTeX sources, but it comes with 65535 other files and 
directories that I do not need and also mandates the download of Cygwin.

2)  Basically, I want to learn a little about the internals of pdfTeX to 
investigate if I can take the PDF specific C source code out of it and 
somehow use then in the TeX++ project (which is a reincarnation of CommonTeX, 
which was an implementation of TeX written in C from scratch by Pat Monardo).  
I must admit that TeX++ is a piece of cake to install and compile simply 
because there is no autoconf and autotools to convolute the project.

I have been reading TeX, the program these days from cover to cover and 
comparing the source code to the TeX++ sources and the two are as close as it 
can get.  So I suppose, one could take PDFTeX, strip it out of the web2c 
files, massage the rest to fit TeX++, and have an easy to compile, and extend 
version of TeX that produces PDF files directly.

Any inputs on this matter?

Salman

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