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Re: [Discuss-gnuradio] Windows Build environment -- Cygwin or MinGW?

From: Don Ward
Subject: Re: [Discuss-gnuradio] Windows Build environment -- Cygwin or MinGW?
Date: Wed, 1 Dec 2010 10:46:14 -0500

Kevin Dixon wrote:

I'd like to get started building GNURadio for Windows, using the USRP
1, with the goal of writing some custom blocks. Do people prefer
Cygwin or MinGW style installations? Off the cuff, Cygwin looks more
straightforward. Any opinions?

I use GNU Radio (with USRP1) on both, but prefer MinGW as my "production" environment.

Cygwin has more of the prerequisites available as easy-to-install packages, but they change fairly often, and anytime you update to the latest packages there is a risk that your next GNU Radio installation may not work. The last time I tried it, they were in the process of moving from gcc 3.x to 4.x, but their gcc 4.x required some hacks to GNU Radio. At some point, I expect that 3.x versions of the dependencies will no longer be available and 4.x will be the only option.

MinGW requires a little more work to get all the pieces together, but once you have a working system it is more likely to continue to work forever.

Neither one is in any way comparable to your typical download-and-run Windows install. It really helps if you have (or are willing to acquire) some Unix/Linux experience, or are at least comfortable with using a Windows cmd shell. I assume you have seen the instructions at http://gnuradio.org/redmine/wiki/gnuradio/WindowsInstall.

I have attached a rudimentary Python script to install MinGW, MSYS, and GNU Radio. You need to read the notes at the beginning of the script and edit it to suit your needs, and you may need to updated the versions and/or locations of the dependencies. But once you get it right, it could save you a lot of work.

Good luck with it,

-- Don W.

Attachment: gr_mingw_install.py
Description: Text document

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