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Tips for Using the Cygwin Environment




1          Using Cygwin
1.1          Required Cygwin Packages
1.2          Cygwin File Structure
1.3          Bash Configuration
2          Additional Installs
2.1          TeX
2.2          Xemacs Setup File

^ToC 1 Using Cygwin

^ToC 1.1 Required Cygwin Packages

If you are left to a "windows operating system" computer, then first of all you should install the "cygwin" tool kit. This ist most easily done by going to http://www.cygwin.comand clicking at the "install cygwin now" link at the right of the page, which is nothing but http://www.cygwin.com/setup.exe

The installation program should be down-loaded to your local hard disk and started from there: Normally one forgets to install some needed packages, and then this installation program has to be re-run. Also for updates and de-installation you always will need this program 1

If you are behind a fire-wall, you should try the option "use IE5-configuration" to find the way out of your domain into the free world.

The basic cygwin .dll is always installed. It offers basic unix functionalities on the different windows platforms.

Beside this, there are different packages you will need. Some of them are by default selected for installation. Most of them are not, and you have to "click" on them to get them installed (or removed !-).
The "View" button on the top right of the selection screen allows different presentations of the package lists.
There is also a search function which will find some product names (but it does not find e.g. names of libraries verbatim.)

The following list of packages and their position reflect the situation as with February 2009. The attributes "group" and "selected by default?" may change in future releases.

The packages or programs you need for using our "make" system are ...

package/program group selected by default ?
make Devel no
sed Base yes
coreutils/date Base yes

For constructing the meta-tools themselves there are more packages needed additionally, which are also very useful in other contexts. These are ...

package/program group selected by default ?
tar Base yes
gunzip Base yes
cvs (client) Devel no
openssh (ssh client) Net no

What we normally need for efficient working are additionally ...

package/program group selected by default ?
xemacs Editors no
xemacs-emacs-common Editors no
xemacs.mule-sumo Editors no
xemacs-sumo Editors no
curl Web no
lynx Web no
lftp Net no
ping ??? yes
diff ??? yes

(In a former release we required "wget", but curl does support "post" of files, which is needed for the call to the xhtml-1.0 verification web service).

Additionally, for having a better terminal window, and for future x11 applications:

package/program group selected by default ?
xorg-server X11 no
xinit X11 no
xrvt-unicode-x shells (!?!) no

An alternative for CVS command line client is the "tortoise" GUI client, which is a plug-in for the file explorer. It looks nice, but we have not yet got it managed to run without manual password entry (i.e. with a ssh key installed on the server)

^ToC 1.2 Cygwin File Structure

Since unix-like systems are not made to handle "drive letters", those are mapped by cygwin to file names.

Cywin constructs a normal unix file system and maps the windows drives into it. On the other hand, the cygwin files themselves of course exist as a part of the windows file system! So we always have a circularity, which can cause problems, e.g. when using find .

If the installation dirctory for cygwin was put directly on the top level of drive "c:", the resulting file system can be depicted as follows:

   cygwin view:                   windows view:

   /bin                           c:\cygwin\bin
   /cygdrive                      c:\cygwin\cygdrive
            /c
            /c/cygwin             c:\cygwin\cygdrive\c\cygwin
            /c/cygwin/bin         c:\cygwin\cygdrive\c\cygwin\bin
                     /cygdrive    c:\cygwin\cygdrive\c\cygwin\cygdrive(<==CIRCLE!!)
                     /cygdrive/c (<==CIRCLE!!)
                     /etc/        c:\cygwin\etc 
                            or    c:\cygwin\cygdrive\c\cygwin\etc(<==CIRCLE!!)

            /c/cygwin/home        c:\cygwin\cygdrive\c\cygwin\home
            /c/cygwin/home/Nn     c:\cygwin\cygdrive\c\cygwin\home\Nn (<==$HOME!!)

            /d                    c:\cygwin\cygdrive\d
            /d/Users
            /d/Users/Nn     (<= a kind of "windows home", different to $HOME!)
            /d/Users/Nn/Documents
            /e
   /etc
   /lib
   /proc
   /tmp
   /usr
   /var

^ToC 1.3 Bash Configuration

On XP everything seems ok after cygwins's automatic installation. But on "windows vista" cygwin's program directories ("/usr/bin", "/bin", etc.) seem notto be in cygwin's own search path!

To intialize your bash you should use the .profile file in your home directory. The cygwin home directory is identical to the windows home directory, and stored in $HOME. On "vista" it is normally found in "c:\Users\<yourName>".

(The .bashrc file at this location SHOULD also do, but does not really work !-)

We put a link there to a text file containing something like ...

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/bin:/usr/bin:/bin:/usr/X11R6/bin:/cygdrive/c/bin
export PS1="\w>"

alias ll="ls -la"
export LESS="-j4 -a -M -S -I"
cd $HOME
echo "bash startup successfully executed"

^ToC 2 Additional Installs

^ToC 2.1 TeX

For TeX use the separated "MikTex" distribution, as downloadable from miktex.org

Do not use 'TeTex' coming with cygwin. is old and rotten. Esp. the TEXINPUTS variable does not seem to be respected!

^ToC 2.2 Xemacs Setup File

Currently the only real importantexplicit xemacs configuration file entry required under cygwin is to explicitly enable utf-8 support. Most of our XML documents are (naturally) utf-8 encoded.

This is achieved by ...

  1. installing the xemacs-sumo and xemacs.mule-sumo packages, as described above,
  2. and adding to the initialization file <HOME>/.xemacs/init.el the following code snippet:

     (require 'un-define)
     (set-coding-priority-list '(utf-8))
     (set-coding-category-system 'utf-8 'utf-8)

Some more useful configs are ...

(global-set-key "\C-u"  'compile) 
(global-set-key "\C-z"  'next-error)
(global-set-key "\M-q"  'dabbrev-expand)
(setq kill-whole-line t)
(paren-set-mode 'paren)
(line-number-mode 1)

(custom-set-variables
 '(visible-bell t)
 '(c-basic-offset 2)
 '(user-mail-address "" t)
 '(query-user-mail-address nil))



1 ...or a newer version thereof! Regratably, there were phases when the developers requested to download a new version of this installer programm five times a week! But it is small, and currently more stable, so storing it currently does make sense!





[all pages:] introduction message / location / muli format dtd xantlr tdom ops paisley metajava umod option auxiliaries d2d downloads & licenses people bibliography APPENDICES:: white papers white papers 2 white papers 3 project struct proposal cygwin tips SOURCE:option.dtd SOURCE:dtd.umod DOC:deliverables.ddf DOC-DE:deliverables.ddf DOC:mtdocpage.ddf DOC-DE:mtdocpage.ddf SOURCE:basic.dd2 SOURCE:xslt.dd2


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