SPUG: Compiling Perl-5.8.0 for Windows XP

Marc M. Adkins Marc.M.Adkins at Doorways.org
Sun Jul 21 21:45:49 CDT 2002

> I see Perl-5.8.0 is out but ActiveState does not list an *.msi file for
> it. Does anyone know the steps to compile it? I have Visual Studio 6.0
> to use. Is there some simple steps to follow or is it a 5-6 hour
> nightmare not worth banging my head against the
> Wall over? Any suggestions are appreciated!

It's not a problem.  I've built 5.8 RC1, 5.8 RC2, and the just-distributed
5.8 with Visual Studio.  Get the zip file from the perl-5.8.0.tar.gz on one
of the links on:


A few days ago this file (perl-5.8.0.tar.gz) was missing on one of the
distribution sites.  You could get the archives for RC1 or RC2 but not the
released version.  A minor and hopefully temporary situation.

Unzip the file into a directory somewhere.  Left as an exercise for the
reader, most modern tools will unzip .tar.gz.  If you don't have a better
one, Globalscape's CuteZip will do it.  Or various faux-UNIX tool kits will
give you a command line utility like gunzip or gzip with flags, sometimes
followed by liberal application of tar.

The way I do it is to open a DOS box and change to the directory I just
created.  Then go down into the win32 directory from there.  Enter VCVARS32
at the command line (unless you are loading the relevant VC++ symbols
elsewise).  Use plain old NMAKE:

	nmake test
	nmake install

The last command will install into C:\perl or wherever you fix it to go (by
editing Makefile in the win32 directory).  It will replace whatever Perl
version you might have previously had.  Be forewarned.  You may want to
rename or delete any old perl directory since all packages must be rebuilt
(not binary compatible).

Doesn't look like there was an original Makefile.PL or configure.pl to
execute.  I don't remember doing that, and don't see those files in win32.
With the separate win32 subdirectory I believe that step is unecessary.

The instructions are contained in the c:\perl\html\index.html file after
you've successfully built and installed.  It probably lives somewhere
online, maybe CPAN.org, I don't know where (sorry).

The build on a 600Mhz PIII takes maybe a half hour at most, including
everything.  It always works for me.  The ithreads support seems to be
enabled by default.

It's a pretty mature product, I haven't had problems with the build process,
it seemed pretty bulletproof.  Your mileage may vary.


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