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Moving from Linux to Windows

posted May 7, 2011, 7:53 PM by Andrew Jessop   [ updated May 13, 2011, 4:09 PM ]
Recently I've been doing some C# and Java development on windows.  I've found the move from Linux development back to windows a little bit of a shock as I've begun to rely on several Linux features heavily.
Below is a list of useful and important tools I've found to make a useful Windows (XP) development environment, and to help the transistion go smoothly:
General Info:
Automated downloader & installer for many common and useful Windows applications.
  • I select a set of applications similar to the following...
 Web Browsers  Messaging  Media  Runtimes  Imaging  Documents         Other  Utilities  Compression  Dev Tools
chrome   pidgin
iTunes  Flash  Paint.NET                       Acrobat Reader Dropbox ImgBurn 7-Zip Python
firefox    K-Lite Codecs Java GIMP PDFCreator  
      .NET           Notepad++ 

Process Explorer
  • Unzip it and use the executable.  In the Options menu, choose:
    - Replace Task Manager
    - Hide When Minimised
    - Allow Only One Instance
Power Resizer
Allows you to resize windows in a similar manor to Windows 7. 
  • Customise source & rebuild so that moving a window to the top of the screen fully maximises it - same behavior to Windows 7.
Graphical vi editor for windows.
  • In the installer, select "create .bat files for command line usage"
  • Add C:\Program Files\Vim\vim73 to system PATH environment variable

The basic GNU Unix tools/apps for windows (like ls, rm, grep, find, zip, tar, cat, file etc.)

  • Extract it to C:\MinSYS
  • Add C:\MinSYS\bin and C:\MinSYS\msys\1.0\bin to system PATH environment variable
  • In a terminal run mingw-get install msys-man msys-bash msys-bzip2 msys-core msys-coreutils msys-findutils msys-file msys-gawk msys-grep msys-gzip msys-less msys-sed msys-tar msys-unzip msys-wget msys-zip msys-mintty
  • Create a shortcut to C:\MinSYS\msys\1.0\msys.bat file and place in quick launch bar.
  • Edit the shortcut properties:
      - Start In: "C:\MinSYS\msys\1.0\bin"
      - Target: "C:\MinSYS\msys\1.0\msys.bat" --mintty
      - Run: Minimized
      - Layout Tab: (Width=1, Height=1)
      - Change icon to C:\MinSYS\msys\1.0\bin\mintty.exe's icon
  • Reopen a terminal via the new shortcut
  • Create /etc/fstab
      #Win32_Path Mount_Point
      c:/minsys /minsys
      c:/DOCUME~1/ADMINI~1/MYDOCU~1 /home/Administrator
  • Close terminal and reopen to get the new home area mount point
  • Edit C:\MinSYS\msys\1.0\etc\profile or create your own ~/.profile:
    export PS1='\[\e]2;\u@\h:\w\a\]\u@\h:\[\e[1;34m\]\w\[\e[0;39m\]$ '
    alias ls='ls -U --color=auto'  # -U sorts by letter, not capitalisation
    alias grep='grep --color=auto'
    alias egrep='egrep --color=auto'
    alias fgrep='fgrep --color=auto'
  • Change mintty's settings (Right Click->Options)
      - Looks -> Cursor -> Block
      - Text -> Font -> Size 10
    or write ~/.minttyrc with:
  • FontHeight=10
  • Add gvim's path to PATH environment variable in .profile if not added to Windows system PATH var.
  • setup /etc/inputrc so that CTRL+LeftArrow and CTRL+RightArrow work in the terminal:
    • # mappings for Ctrl-left-arrow and Ctrl-right-arrow for word moving
      "\e[1;5C": forward-word
      "\e[1;5D": backward-word
      "\e[5C": forward-word
      "\e[5D": backward-word
      "\e\e[C": forward-word
      "\e\e[D": backward-word
    Note: if you can't find the correct mapping in a terminal press CTRL+V then CTRL+LeftArrow - this will output the mapping.  Replace ^[ with \e.
  • To start any program, view a directory in explorer, or use the "associated program" for a file use start <arg>
General Info:
Network scanner/exploration tool.
  • Install WinPCap
NX Windows Client
X Windows remote compression technology.
  • Use "custom settings", choose "run command: gnome-terminal"

iPhone Explorer

General Info:
Allows you to explore the file system on your iPhone, add or delete files and folders through a GUI.
  • Simply install and use. (requires iTunes to be installed)
Andrew Jessop,
May 7, 2011, 11:46 PM