Sign in to follow this  

Which MS Visual Studio to get?

This topic is 3711 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

Hi all, Here's a quick question: I plan to polish up my windows programming and eventually start a large scale project which should run on windows 2000. Which Visual Studio should I get for programming large-scale games? Is the newest version always the best? I have an old Visual Studio 6.0 Standard lying around, but it's in German and I just *hate* that (makes you have to figure out all the translations when reading an English tutorial, etc.). I read the new .NET framework of the later Visual Studios doesn't translate code into machine code anymore, but in some kind of Microsoft Intermediate Language (MSIL) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Visual_Studio). Do I want that? I also have the first Visual Studio .NET from my brother. Should I use that? I hear Visual Studio is the best compiler for Windows. Do "pros" always just use the latest (and most "pro") version? Regards, Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Markie
I have an old Visual Studio 6.0 Standard lying around, but it's in German and I just *hate* that (makes you have to figure out all the translations when reading an English tutorial, etc.).
VC 6.0 is a terrible compiler, don't use it - really.

Quote:
Original post by Markie
I read the new .NET framework of the later Visual Studios doesn't translate code into machine code anymore, but in some kind of Microsoft Intermediate Language (MSIL) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Visual_Studio).
Do I want that?
Visual Studio .NET 2003 and Visual Studio 2005 can compile CLR code optionally. They'll still compile C++ code to an EXE as you'd expect.

Quote:
Original post by Markie
I also have the first Visual Studio .NET from my brother. Should I use that?
I hear Visual Studio is the best compiler for Windows.
I wouldn't bother. You can download Visual Studio 2005 Express for free, which is perfectly fine for most development. You'll need the Platform SDK too for doing C++ development.

Link to VC2005 Express, and Read this for Platform SDK stuff.

Quote:
Original post by Markie
Do "pros" always just use the latest (and most "pro") version?
Pros will use whatever version is most suitible. If you have hundreds of thousands of lines of code in a project, you don't want to have to change a load of it because of differences in compilers. Usually you'll upgrade to the latest compiler (if all the build tools support it) at the start of a new project.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Evil Steve
Quote:
Original post by Markie
I have an old Visual Studio 6.0 Standard lying around, but it's in German and I just *hate* that (makes you have to figure out all the translations when reading an English tutorial, etc.).
VC 6.0 is a terrible compiler, don't use it - really.
If you think VC6 is a terrible development environment then I hope you never have to deal with any embedded platforms..
In other words everything is relative, but the fact remains that the more recent versions of Visual Studio are far better once you get used to them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by implicit
Quote:
Original post by Evil Steve
Quote:
Original post by Markie
I have an old Visual Studio 6.0 Standard lying around, but it's in German and I just *hate* that (makes you have to figure out all the translations when reading an English tutorial, etc.).
VC 6.0 is a terrible compiler, don't use it - really.
If you think VC6 is a terrible development environment then I hope you never have to deal with any embedded platforms..
In other words everything is relative, but the fact remains that the more recent versions of Visual Studio are far better once you get used to them.
Fair point [smile]

Any version of Visual Studio is better than CodeWarrior, which is what I have to use at work :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by implicit
Quote:
Original post by Evil Steve
Quote:
Original post by Markie
I have an old Visual Studio 6.0 Standard lying around, but it's in German and I just *hate* that (makes you have to figure out all the translations when reading an English tutorial, etc.).
VC 6.0 is a terrible compiler, don't use it - really.
If you think VC6 is a terrible development environment then I hope you never have to deal with any embedded platforms..
In other words everything is relative, but the fact remains that the more recent versions of Visual Studio are far better once you get used to them.


Environment aside, I think the real point he was getting at is that VS 6.0 is broken with regard to the C++ standard, that it is missing features with regard to the C++ standard, and that it comes, by default, with a broken, hackish and buggy implementation of the C++ standard library... If it's the standard version it won't even try to optimize the assembly output at all either.

On an embedded device, you often have little or no choice as to what compiler you use, because the number of choices is so small. On the desktop we've moved on, several times now, and even the most basic, free options will run circles around VS 6.0.

For Windows Programming, VC++ 2005 Express Edition and the Platform SDK are exactly what the OP needs (assuming that he cannot afford, or doesn't need, VS 2005 Professional). Either will give you a more modern IDE, far better adherence to the standard, a much improved implementation of the C++ standard library, and a compiler that will actually produce optimized assembly output (even the free express version).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Side note, Windows 2000 isn't really properly supported anymore. Targeting XP & Vista would be better.

As far as what to use, right now you can download Visual 2008 Beta for free and get a taste of the newest version - which is due for release later this year.

The Express versions give you a pretty good starting point though, and those files can be imported in to Pro.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by ravyne2001
Environment aside, I think the real point he was getting at is that VS 6.0 is broken with regard to the C++ standard, that it is missing features with regard to the C++ standard, and that it comes, by default, with a broken, hackish and buggy implementation of the C++ standard library... If it's the standard version it won't even try to optimize the assembly output at all either.
Well.. Yes, but the OP was asking about Visual Studio in general.

Once upon a time, before Visual Studio Express, when newbies asked the "experts" whether to choose VC6 or some free GCC-based development environment they were often counseled to choose GCC because it's more standards compliant. Which is monumentally fucked up because there are so many other important aspects to consider. I mean I'd rather write C code in VS6 with it's awesome integrated debugger then C++ code in a fully-compliant environment with a crappy debugger (which includes just about everything except Visual Studio). I mean how much template magic are you willing to give up the get edit-and-continue?

Of course what with Visual Studio Express being free that's thankfully not a choice we have to make anymore, I guess it just still bugs me that's all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jesus, guys!

Thanks a ton! Really!
Great answers! Thanks!
Much more than I expected! :-))
All questions satisfied! - Free beer for all!
;-)

No seriously, thanks all, you're all really great guys!

Thanks especially ravyne2001 for your details about the broken C++ standard. I think that weighs *very* heavily against using the Visual C++ 6.0 compiler. - I had *no* idea!

Thanks,
Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by paulecoyote
Side note, Windows 2000 isn't really properly supported anymore. Targeting XP & Vista would be better.



You would exclude the entire windows 2000 userbase on the basis that it's not "properly supported"?
How long will windows xp be "properly supported", and how does a win2k <-> vista ratio truly compare?

Avoiding xact and agaia is pretty much all it takes to get it running on Windows 2000, unless required, there is absolutely no reason not to target it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm gonna recommend Visual C++ Express Edition 05 and if you want to try the latest try there Visual C++ Express Edition 08 Orcas Edition.

I recommend these 2, for I have worked in Visual C++ 05 and I know of the rigorous setup task of installing a library or at one point what a rigorous task it was to setup libraries like SDL, and Allegro, and in Visual C++ 08 there is hardly any work, just throw the binaries in the correct folder, and link them.

If you are using it for a learning purpose instead of a just means of diving into it and see what you can do then I would download and install

Visual C++ Express Edition 05
Visual C++ SP1
PSDK
Visual Studio 05 SP1

I say this, because from what I have seen there is a majority of people who use this setup at least at my school and small group of friends of programmers

Hope this helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks code4fun!

O.K., here's the million dollar question:
Can all the required files needed for Visual C++ 2005 Express be downloaded to be burnt to CD or to install on a machine without internet access?

There is a trick for doing this with Internet Explorer Downloads:
First download the little installer .exe, called "ie6setup.exe"
or something like that, to, let's say to C:\Downloads

Then, open START --> Run --> and type:
C:\Downloads\ie6setup.exe /c:"ie6wzd.exe /d /s:""#E"""

(Here, ie6setup.exe is your original installer file and ie6wzd.exe is some secondary installer file created or unpacked when running ie6setup.exe. - Never mind the location of the second file, it's always found.)

What happens is that ie6setup.exe gets executed, but instead of directly installing the files and then deleting them, it stores them at a location which it will ask, then you can install them whenever you want.

I tried this with the installer file for Visual C++ 2005 Express:
--> START --> Run --> and type:
C:\Downloads\vcsetup.exe /c:"setup.exe /d /s:""#E"""
(setup.exe seems to be the relevant file unpacked to your local user's temp dir.)
But this gives an error message that some Windows Installer 3.1 .msi file is missing.

Hmmm. I guess this really would be a windows guru question though.

Does anyone know how to install Visual C++ 2005 Express on a Windows 2000 machine without Internet access? (I also like to have what I use burnt on a disk in case Micro$oft decides to jank their files off their servers when they feel it's time to buy a new operating system for EVERYONE now.)

If not, never mind. I'll either have to just do that damned online-installation or go out and buy something or whatever.

Regards,
Mark

[Edited by - Markie on October 14, 2007 5:40:04 AM]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You can download an ISO version of VS2005 EE to burn to a CD for offline installation. Here's the link.

I did this a while ago to avoid the time involved in reinstalling VS if I had to reformat and it works fine. Any updates since you got the ISO should just come down as part of automatic update.

The PSDK and DXSDK can just be burned to disk as they are as they come in stand-alone exe installers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by EasilyConfused
You can download an ISO version of VS2005 EE to burn to a CD for offline installation. There's a link somewhere on the same page you download the web installer.

AWESOME[attention]

YES!!!

The link was hidden in the "Support" section referenced at the bottom.
The "Support" link at the bottom of the C++ 2005 Express download page takes you to support where there is a link to "Manual Installation Instructions".
That link will take you where you can download the full ISO file here:
msdn2.microsoft.com/en-gb/express/aa718401.aspx

Thanks a ton!!
:-))) [smile]

(I don't know what PSDK is or where to download the DirextX SDK, but I guess I can figure that out myself - hopefully. ;-)

THANKS! [attention] [attention]

Regards,
Mark


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
PSDK is the Platform Software Development Kit and is required to compile and build Win32 applications. It does not come with Express Edition by default and is a bit tricky to install. Steve posted this link above to the definitive guide.

The DXSDK is required for compiling and building DirectX based applications, such as Direct3D.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by EasilyConfused
The DXSDK is required for compiling and building DirectX based applications, such as Direct3D.

Thanks again!
:-)

You said DXSDK comes in a stand-alone installer, right?
Where can I download that?
(I can't find nothing on Microsoft pages... *shesh*.)

EDIT: Ooops...
Sorry, JUST found it! It's here:
DirectX Software Development Kit

Regards,
Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by marius1930
Quote:
Original post by paulecoyote
Side note, Windows 2000 isn't really properly supported anymore. Targeting XP & Vista would be better.



You would exclude the entire windows 2000 userbase on the basis that it's not "properly supported"?
How long will windows xp be "properly supported", and how does a win2k <-> vista ratio truly compare?

Avoiding xact and agaia is pretty much all it takes to get it running on Windows 2000, unless required, there is absolutely no reason not to target it.


Not at all... if you can you should obviously... I was pointing out how challenging it potentially could be. Anything other then security updates and serious bug fixes with existing stuff is all that MS are going to release for 2000 now. The latest IE, DX DSK and Platform SDK don't even install on 2K anymore.

http://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle/?p1=3071

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This topic is 3711 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this