# C++ compilers

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Right now, I'm rollin' along using VC++ 6 at home. But next year, I'm going off to school and I'm not sure I'll have it (though I'd like .Net or VS7, they're quite a bit outside my price range, which is... free)!!! Waaa!! So now I need opinions on the next best thing. Free thing, that is. I believe VS 2003 Beta is free, but is it any good? Lots of people use Dev-C++, but it seems really non-standardized. But then again, I haven't really looked into it that much, so it's quite possible I'm completely wrong. [smile] So, anyway, if anyone could give me some objective Best Choice, I'd be much obiged. Thanks a million.

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First, it is Visual Studio 2005 beta that is free.

I would recommend looking into the free Visual C++ 2003 Professional Optimizing Compiler. Hands down, there is basically nothing that touches this thing. You could always just get Visual C++ 2005 Beta 2 and hook it up with the free compiler above.

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 Original post by ricekrispywLots of people use Dev-C++, but it seems really non-standardized. But then again, I haven't really looked into it that much, so it's quite possible I'm completely wrong. [smile]

Dev-CPP is just the IDE. It uses the GCC compiler, which is more standardized then VS6 [wink]. It's pretty good for being free. Another option is to use the neat Code::Blocks IDE and add in the Visual C++ Toolkit (which is the 2003 product you were refering too originally) + PlatformSDK. That or what Sagar_Indurkhya has suggested are yout best bets for free.

I know you said free, but if you are going off to school maybe you should look at the Visual Studio 2003 Academic Edition. It's only $100 and includes the Visual C++, C#, J#, and VB and the optimising compiler, without having to replace anything. #### Share this post ##### Link to post ##### Share on other sites Another option is that your school may sell an academic version of VS.NET for a very reasonable price. I think here (University of Waterloo, Canada), you can borrow a CD and install if for free as a student, though you don't get any docs then or anything. Also, you can buy a full boxed edition for about$140 Canadian.

tj963

EDIT: So the above poster beat me to it

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 Original post by Sagar_IndurkhyaFirst, it is Visual Studio 2005 beta that is free.

That's what I meant. [smile]

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 Original post by glatI know you said free, but if you are going off to school maybe you should look at the Visual Studio 2003 Academic Edition. It's only \$100 and includes the Visual C++, C#, J#, and VB and the optimising compiler, without having to replace anything.

Eh, but don't educational versions usually have restrictions? Like, restricting ones? [rolleyes]

@Drew:
Code::Blocks looks pretty nice, and if I can't get a version of VS, I'll probably use it.

Thanks a lot.

BTW: How good is the VS 2005 Beta? I mean, is it buggy and such? It's only Beta. And, how much longer will the Beta be available, do you think?

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So far DevC++ seems more buggy than 2005 Beta 1. (Beta 2 is missing windows templates, but you can still make windows programs anyway, just takes a bit of working around.)

DevC++ is driving me up a wall, personally...

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 Original post by ricekrispywEh, but don't educational versions usually have restrictions? Like, restricting ones? [rolleyes]

AFAIK, the only restriction with acamdemic licences is that you can't use them to create a product that you sell. However, since you can use the free 2003 compiler to re-compile anything you produce, that restriction is pretty much pointless. Unless there's something else in the licence I'm not aware of.

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 Original post by ErzengeldeslichtesSo far DevC++ seems more buggy than 2005 Beta 1. (Beta 2 is missing windows templates, but you can still make windows programs anyway, just takes a bit of working around.)

By windows templates, do you mean the STL?

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 Original post by ricekrispywBTW: How good is the VS 2005 Beta? I mean, is it buggy and such? It's only Beta. And, how much longer will the Beta be available, do you think?

Beta 2 is definetly better than Beta 1, but its still rather sluggish on my laptop (1.4 Ghz, 512 MB Ram). The Task Manager claims it uses up ~75 MB of Ram, while VS.NET 2003 only uses up around 25 MB (according to the task manager).

Its not that slow though, and if you have more Ram than me you should have no problems. I think the Beta will be available until the Final Release, which will probably be around the PDC (September 13th-16th I think). I've heard the Beta 1's expire, but I'm not sure about the Beta 2's. I'm expecting that they do - but don't quote me.

I've used Code::Blocks as well and it works rather well. Very stable when compared to Dev C++. It uses the same compiler as Dev C++, but after compiling my game on VC++ and with Code::Blocks, I only noticed a very slight difference in FPS (less than 2%, which could have been from a variety of reasons). And that's with all the optimizations on for both compilers.

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