Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Software Tip: Upgrade Cygwin

Between cygwin and emacs, I've managed to turn my Windows box into a Unix box. Though of late, I've noticed that Cygwin commands seemed to be crashing with more frequency. Then it hit me - I haven't updated Cygwin in forever, maybe there's a newer version to install?

I checked out www.cygwin.com and things didn't look good. The site hasn't changed in years. I did a bit of Googling around and came up with this recipe to see the current version of Cygwin I was running:

 Laptop [~] cygcheck -cd | grep ^cygwin
 cygwin                  1.5.22-1
 cygwin-doc              1.4-4
 cygwin-x-doc            1.0.4-1
 Laptop [~] 

OK, so I had 1.5.22-1. And what's the latest? That's 1.5.25-7. OK, that seems like an improvement - but how much could really happen from .22 to .25? Then I checked the dates of the releases: 1.5.22 was released Nov 14th, 2006 and 1.5.25 was just released Dec 17th, 2007. Whoa! In terms of time, that's huge. Definitely time for an upgrade.

Upgrading is really simple. You can read about it here or just: (1) shutdown all cygwin apps and (2) re-run setup.exe. It will do the upgrade for you automagically

Don't forget to re-run the above command when the install is done to see what version of cygwin you have now:

 Laptop [~] cygcheck -cd | grep ^cygwin
 cygwin                  1.5.25-7
 cygwin-doc              1.4-4
 cygwin-x-doc            1.0.4-1
 Laptop [~] 

So far, cygwin seems to be behaving better. Though, it's probably too early to tell. At least the upgrade didn't do more damage than good.

1 comment:

  1. I ran into Cygwin many years ago (before it was taken over by Redhat) and thought it was great. At the time I didn't Linux wouldn't run on my laptop but Cygwin on windows worked great. Over time I upgraded hardware and made the complete move to linux as did many of my friends who were using Cygwin. It is good to know that it is still being developed, there have been a number of times recently that I've needed (or wanted) to run windows applications and Wine in my opinion, just isn't ready enough yet. It is kind of funny, but it brings out the point that no Operating system is perfect, not even MacOSX. On Windows we need Cygwin to run Unix stuff, on Linux we use Wine to sort of emulate Windows, and on MacOSX we've got Parallels so that we can run both linux and windows in VM (which has been available on Windows and Linux for years). But not one operating system can do it all in today's environment, at least not with out help....

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