Download Visual Studio Express 2008 now

Robert Kern robert.kern at
Fri Apr 16 16:58:38 CEST 2010

On 2010-04-16 07:30 AM, Brian Blais wrote:
> On Apr 12, 2010, at 16:36 , Martin v. Loewis wrote:
>> If you are planning to build Python extension modules in the next five
>> years, I recommend that you obtain a copy of VS Express
> Am I missing something here? I have heard this before, but I have built
> extension modules many times under windows (using Cython) and never once
> used a MS product. I've just had to change a distutils config file to
> use a different compiler (mingw32, directions here:
> It seems to work
> fine. What is the basis of this claim that you need MS Visual Studio to
> do it?

Most extensions will work okay when compiled with mingw32. However, mingw32 is 
still based on MSVCRT6.dll as its C runtime. You would get errors whenever a 
FILE* pointer crosses over the boundary. distutils will tell it to link with the 
CRT that Python is currently built with, but some of the headers aren't up to 
date for that CRT, so some C++ extensions will not work (a command C++ operation 
triggers a table lookup in a static table defined in the CRT, but it differs in 
size between versions).

Robert Kern

"I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma
  that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had
  an underlying truth."
   -- Umberto Eco

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