I have spent an awful lot of my life in the last couple of years trying to code C++. Not learning how to do it, not struggling with compiler errors or mistakes anywhere, just with the nonsense task of getting an IDE with a “compile and run” button working. Lets be clear about my requirements here. I need the standard c++ libraries, I need a compiler that is unix friendly, and I don’t need to use any win32 calls (i.e. there’s no way I’m using Visual Studio, sledgehammer to crack a nut, etc etc).
First, Kdevelop broke. The automake library it used suddenly ceased to work, and so the ubuntu and openSUSE versions just bit the dust. You could write code, but you couldn’t automatically compile it, rendering my Masters Degree source code project unusable. Useless, eh? good job I kept working TGZs of the various builds.
Next, Netbeans broke. Now to get Netbeans C++ working on windows (I abandoned Linux for development after my KDE experience) you have to install cygwin, prat around configuring netbeans (adding in new header file locations, pointing it to the appropriate bin directory, etc), but hey, give them some slack and just enter the right values. And then it throws a Java null pointer exception when you try and run. And when you try and report the bug, your report is marked as a duplicate that has been fixed in the latest version, except I am using the latest version. A similar problem appears in the v6.8 beta. AARGH. (etc).
Then, finally, I Googled “c++ dev environment windows” and read some reviews. I tried various things (Code::blocks was rubbish and threw about 400 exceptions every time I tried to compile or run, eclipse…well, that’s basically just Netbeans and I didn’t want to go down that route again.) And then I found dev c++.
It is written in delphi (yuck) it is open source (hmm, interesting) and it works out of the box. I don’t know if it was because I already had cygwin installers, but the v5 beta (220.127.116.11), specifically the version that claims to have a bundled mingw GCC, just works. You can dictate your own directory structure, it will “handle” it. You can use GCC header files, and they just work. And most importantly, you hit compile and run and you get a command window with “Hello world!” popping up so you can see your code running.
This is every headache I have ever had with this reversed and compensated for. Thank you…Bloodshed software? who write stuff in delphi? Well, thank you anyway, for this marvellous solution to what seemed to be an eternal problem.