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On 7/18/06, Curt Hibbs <ml.chibbs / gmail.com> wrote:
>
> The One-Click Ruby Installer for Windows is at a cross-roads. The C++
> compiler situation on Windows has become a complete mess because of subtle
> incompatibilities and has, consequently, become a big headache for me and
> extension writers.



There's one issue we may be finessing. What about installations (like
production servers) where it's not acceptable to load a compiler at all? My
gut says that this is an important issue going forward, especially as Ruby
applications start getting used in enterprise environments. If you accept
that, then the implication for this discussion is that extension writers
really do need to start compiling and testing for a variety of possible
Windows environments. Moreover, it means that binary-distro gems may need to
be smart enough to carry more than one set of bits. We'll have this issue
regardless of the choice you make between VC and MinGW, Curt.

What does that mean for non-Ruby packages like sqllite and openssl? It may
mean that we need to provide custom distros of these libraries wrapped into
Ruby-gems that know how to interact with how we sense what's in the
environment when we install. If this sounds like a total pain in the tail:
it is, but my point is that we're not doing our users any favors by shifting
the pain onto them. My personal point of view (which many of you may
reasonably disagree with) is that Ruby applications should gain the
reputation of being braindead-easy to install on nearly any machine. For
better or worse, that means a lot more attention paid by developers (that's
us) to these issues.

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