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Request: Windows installers
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Date: 2005-09-01 (00:26)
From: Christopher A. Watford <christopher.watford@g...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Request: Windows installers
On 8/31/05, skaller <skaller@users.sourceforge.net> wrote:
> I have a small request for the Ocaml Windows installers:
> There are TWO Windows based Ocaml ports: MinGW and Win32 native
> plus the Cygwin port.
> Please could the builders of these packages
> distinguish them??
> Make the default install points, desktop icons, menu items,
> etc all distinct. Plus, with the OcamlWinPlus thing, make sure
> the port/version of Ocaml being used is displayed on the titlebar:
> even the help/about does not tell you this (hmm .. and 'ocaml'
> command should tell you this too)

I'll fix that. In my copy Help -> About does, but the entire thing is
built such that it doesn't need to know the version. Unfortunately the
best thing I can do is grab the first line from ocaml.exe... which is
fugly. If the EXE is stamped I'll take out of the NT image headers.

OCamlWinPlus really needs an embedded toplevel. Because piping in that
toplevel is a sonofabitch. I could spruce the thing up big time or
drop it into Eclipse/MSVS if I could step through the toplevel code
wise. Alas I'm not quite sure how to start this.
> I have, and need, all three versions of Ocaml installed,
> and it is all very confusing, both MingW and native ports
> think they own the world and use the same OCAMLLIB variable,
> and also both expect themselves to be first in the PATH.

Personally MingW should come second to MSVS. But I don't think your
'first in PATH' to be correct.

> Please don't add the binary directory to the system PATH
> without asking, just as for registering Ocaml file types,
> please DO ask whether to do this (for installing both
> ports .. the answer will be NO in both cases).

I agree.

> For the MinGW port it is required to use Cygwin? the port
> doesn't appear to actually work with MSYS (standalone
> Mingw tools including gcc/as and bash)?
> The Windows native version using native code compiler
> seems to work provided you have the assembler ML.EXE
> and ML.ERR installed, but you also seem to need
> MSVC++ compiler CL.EXE and some .lib and .dll files.
> I don't quite understand why CL.EXE is required,
> why isn't LINK.EXE good enough? Isn't everything
> done via assembler?

CL is the primary on that 'toolchain'. I was unaware of being able to
go around it.

> Anyhow, helloworld.ml compiles to native code fine using
> ML.EXE 6.15, and Visual Studio Pro 2003 versions of
> CL.EXE plus the required Lib and Dll files.
> [If someone knows how to fix the PATH variable pls
> email me privately .. I forget how to edit
> environment variables .. :]
> --
> John Skaller <skaller at users dot sourceforge dot net>

My thoughts, I'll get on the OCamlWinPlus stuff right now.

Christopher A. Watford