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Information about Gnu Make

I use Gnu make for many projects, both internal and those published on the web.

  • You can download and install Gnu make from Simtel for DOS/Windows. This comes with fairly extensive documentation. Be certain to investigate make_15.html which is the quick reference.

  • You can find general information about make and places to download it for other machines at the Gnu make page.

  • Note that Linux automatically installs Gnu make.

  • However, the easiest way to get make working is to install Cygwin. This is a free Unix shell that runs on Windows9x/NT/2000/XP, and it solves many problems you will encounter trying to build under the normal Windows command prompt.

  • You can dowload Cygwin at Make sure that you explicitly choose the addition of make; the last time I checked you didn't get it unless you explicitly select it from the list of options.

  • Windows NT may require some fooling around in order to get Gnu make to run, but it should be possible to make it work (you may be able to find specific notes by searching the Internet; try Google).

  • Here are some notes from Xandy Johnson at FGM, Inc., who solved the Windows NT problem, albeit with the use of Cygwin:

    The main thing is to use Cygwin. The really important part of this is that Cygwin gives you a real shell, which none of the Windows command processors (i.e. COMMAND.COM on DOS/3.1/95/98/Me and cmd.exe on NT/2000) are. I invoke 'make' from a Cygwin bash prompt, which should work with nothing additional beyond installing Cygwin. If you want to be able to invoke make from a DOS Command Prompt, you need to do a couple of additional things: (1) add the Cygwin 'bin' directory (e.g. C:\cygwin\bin) to your PATH, and (2) set the environment variable MAKE_MODE=unix. Setting MAKE_MODE=unix will cause make to use /bin/sh as the shell, rather than cmd.exe, which is, as I said before, one of the crucial differences in Cygwin.

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