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Trying to get a working Windows version compiled. Right now, everything builds and runs, but dies with some kind of error right after connecting to and downloading a remote site.

The compiler situation on Windows is being a real pain in the ass. Currently I am using the MinGW/Msys toolchain, and it works well enough. However, the debugger support is terrible -- gdb is basically useless, which is making it quite a bit harder to track down bugs.

So I'm investigating the possibilities for using MSVC, preferably without shelling out $300-$450 for a copy of Visual Studio. Microsoft has been getting a bit more generous lately about releasing basic versions of their developer tools for free download, but the situation is still not great:

There is the Microsoft C++ toolkit, which includes the absolutely most basic stuff, the command line compiler and linker. The Microsoft Platform SDK (stuff like "windows.h") must be downloaded separately. This toolkit does not even come with MS's version of make (nmake.exe) so it's not sufficient on its own. In addition, I don't know if there is a console-mode debugger. As far as I know (I'd love to be proven wrong :-) it's only possible to do debugging via Visual Studio...

Which leads me to "Visual Studio Express Edition" which I just discovered tonight. This seems to be a stripped down version of Visual Studio which can be downloaded for free (the beta, anyway, there are rumors that the real product will be like $50 which is cheap enough). I think this would be ideal for my purposes, as I just want the basic compiler and debugger and don't need all the bells and whistles that the full VS comes with. However, the beta seems to be severely limited in a couple crucial ways that make it a pain in the ass to use, so it's not an option for the time being. When VS 2005 comes out for real, we'll see...

Going back to the GPL stuff, there's also the Cygwin toolchain, which is actually a lot nicer than MinGW/Msys in some ways. However by default it provides a Unix emulation environment, whereas VOS is perfectly happen as a native Win32 program and so doesn't need to cygwin.dll. So it's actually *extra work* with Cygwin to have it compile a native win32 app. Argh. And I don't know if the debugger support is any better.

So... yea. That's why building a new release on Windows is taking a while. Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

(hmm, on research, I can get Visual C++ 2003 "standard edition" for about $100. That's another option. Anyone know when VS 2005 is coming out?)

[   Peter Amstutz   ][ [EMAIL PROTECTED] ][ [EMAIL PROTECTED]  ]
[Lead Programmer][Interreality Project][Virtual Reality for the Internet]
[ VOS: Next Generation Internet Communication][ http://interreality.org ]
[ http://interreality.org/~tetron ][ pgpkey:  pgpkeys.mit.edu  18C21DF7 ]
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