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In the spirit of getting new people on the project up to speed and leveraging their familiarity with existing Windows tools, what are possible options for cross-platform editing/development?

Of course, the Windows people could learn vi/Emacs, X, Eclipse/NetBeans, etc, but this would involve a period of learning, per-person.

Is there any combination of technologies/tools that would let developers that are most familiar with a Windows tool-chain help out on a Linux-based project?

E.g. One developer would like to use UltraEdit.

For reference, the Linux project(s) are all daemon processes written in C++ and the development server has:

  • Version Control systems include RCS, CVS and SVN.
  • Compile tools are GCC and a Make-like build system.
  • X Windows
  • Telnet/RSH/SSH

Suggestions don't have to be free/open-source, but an indication of licensing terms would be greatly appreciated

(Updated to add language)

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4 Answers 4

The crucial question is whether they can get to the files directly from their Windows machine, as they can then use any editor they like (as far as it conforms to the project) working directly on the files in question.

Putty is nice for ssh to invoke compilers etc, and most people who are comfortable with the CMD.EXE command quickly learn how to use a bash prompt, and they can then see their error messages there and do the necessary corrections in their favorite editor.

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What is your issue with Eclipse SDK? It is a GUI, has version control integrated into it and is portable across Windows and Linux. I find that Windows users are able to handle it.

Look for Qt Creator: Cross-Platform IDE

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No issue with it if it can be installed on Windows - I'll take a closer look. –  JBRWilkinson Oct 24 '10 at 9:06
The original Eclipse distribution is a zip file, not an installer –  Mahmoud Hossam Feb 10 '11 at 10:29
Eclipse CDK can be installed (as in uncompress the files in the zip file to a directory) on Windows with no problem. –  LMC Jul 16 '12 at 14:53

Ultraedit is pretty good as already mentioned. Lots of people swear by Notepad++ too. I've often used Scite as a quick GUI editor both on Windows and Linux.

If they need an X Server on Windows, you can use XMing although that seems to defeat the point of getting them to use Windows tools. Combine that with PuTTY and you have a decent setup to run an Xterm on your windows desktop.

I've not used one but I'm sure there are plenty of Windows SVN clients.

Perhaps you'd be better off with some effort on the Linux side too? For example, what about creating a really nice build/test script with text menus that they can run from a SSH login without needing to learn command line tools? Also you can make sure everything is accessible via Samba.

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+1 for the tip about easy build invocation. CruiseControl may be an option at some point. Surprisingly, the company has an aversion to Samba, but I don't yet know why - does it have security issues? –  JBRWilkinson Oct 24 '10 at 9:07

Well it depends on the language. If your talking about a low level language and your aiming for Linux binaries then Windows people either need a VM or Cygwin. If its high level and your aiming for platform independence, then use whatever editor you want that supports cross platform line endings

Telnet, SSH, and most version control systems are cross platform to increase popularity, so that's not a problem.

I'm not familiar with X, but shouldn't that be abstracted in the language with built in language features or GTK?

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The language is C++. I wasn't expecting to build on Windows, only edit. –  JBRWilkinson Oct 19 '10 at 8:58
@JBR Well then you just need an editor that supports multi os line endings and a VCS client and your done. –  TheLQ Oct 19 '10 at 11:05

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