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Re: [open-cobol-list] OpenCobol setup troubles (error: libcob.h: No such

From: Geoff Hull
Subject: Re: [open-cobol-list] OpenCobol setup troubles (error: libcob.h: No such file or directory)
Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2012 23:23:12 +1200

On 18 September 2012 04:59, Andrew Pennebaker <address@hidden> wrote:

However, in Windows, there is NO standard C compiler, and OpenCobol needs to respect that. There's Microsoft Visual Studio C++, Borland, Digital Mars, MinGW, Cygwin, ActiveState Perl, Strawberry Perl and so on. A decent OpenCobol installer for Windows should either:
  • Include a modern table of acceptable C compilers and their CLI syntax, allowing OpenCobol to detect and use any of the aforementioned (MSVC++, Borland, ...) compilers that were installed on the system at the time of OpenCobol installation.
  • Include its own preconfigured C compiler, which Sergey and Gary have done.
  • Include a "cobc.exe" that is able to produce executables without external C compilers.
The first option is complex, because it requires cobc to have a large, up to date table of dozens of C compiler command line argument standards.
Getting cobc to create executables directly from OpenCobol source code files is not easy, but I think it should be done. Other programming languages can do it just fine, OpenCobol simply needs to get to that point of functionality.


Excuse me, but are you saying it's the responsibility of one Open Source project to sort out the vagaries of all the development tools a user might want to install on their PC? I don't agree. I think it is up to each individual to manage what they install on their PC. If you think you have some ideas about how to configure a PC running Microsoft Windows, then by all means volunteer to do something.

As I understand it, OpenCobol support for the difficult platform called Microsoft Windows is a recent development, probably for exactly the reasons you have been encountering.

You must have also realised that this is a project undertaken by volunteers, not a product you have paid for. So maybe you should lecture Microsoft for not supplying decent development tools with their operating system - GNU/Linux distributions do that for free...

I am absolutely amazed and grateful that there are such talented and hard-working people as those who contribute to impressive projects like OpenCobol. They make these contributions freely and generously, and I don't think we should undervalue this. If you also want to contribute, then I encourage you to do just that.


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