A MinGW distribution that releases quarterly/semi-annually. Meant to favor stability over up-to-dateness and security. If you need those two things, please use MSYS2.
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Signed-off-by: Charadon <dev@iotib.net>
2024-04-05 12:35:48 -04:00
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This is a MinGW distribution that:
- Updates quarterly/semi-annually for a stable toolchain.
- All-in-one package. No package manager, just extract and use.
- Everything is in simple to understand bash.
- Debuginfo is included *inside* the binaries. For easy debugging for both
  developer and user.
- Fully native, no cygwin.dll linked with *any* binary. (Except git, but eh.)

What this distribution is *not*:
- "Fully Secure", this is meant for offline desktop apps and games. If you need
  security over stability, such as for a Password Generator. Use something that
  provides the latest packages such as MSYS2.
- Minimalist, while it's not that big compressed, it'll definitely be bigger
  than an MSYS2 install with *only* the packages you need.

When porting my programs to Windows, I always found it frustrating that there
was no "stable" MinGW distribution. Plenty of rolling releases, but no stable.
My gripes with the other distros were:

MSYS2: Because it's a rolling release, I find myself running into unexpected API
	   changes. This is frustrating as it forces me to forcefully use a newer
	   library while on Linux. Not fun.

Cygwin: You ever tried using MinGW with Cygwin? There's no documentaton on *how*
        to use it, and i've never successfully gotten anything to build. If I
        needed to port a non-graphical unix program, it's good. But for
        graphical applications or games, it's a no go.

I then looked at the more "vanilla" MinGW builds, many of them included their
own software on top of the distribution. Which is mostly fine, but I wanted to
choose my own software.

And thus, I began the journey of making my own MinGW Distro.
	Q: Why not cross-compile from Linux?
	A: Virtual Machines are cheap, and cross-compilation is a pain in the ass.
	Q: Why not use the Visual Studio tools instead of MinGW?
	A: I'm more familiar with GCC than I am with Cl or Clang. I prefer the more
	   "unix" way of how the folder structure is laid out. Not to mention, many
	   libraries require gcc or bash to even build.
	Q: Isn't this not the best for security?
	A: If your application needs security over stability, I highly recommend
	   MSYS2. This is mainly for offline desktop apps and games, where security
	   doesn't really matter much.
	Q: Why are binaries not stripped?
	A: To retain the debuginfo so you can more easily get backtraces. Useful for
	   users too, so they can *give* you said backtraces.
	Q: Can I add a package to this distribution?
	A: Sure! Look at PORTING.txt for more details on how to get your port
	Q: Can I use this in proprietary/commercial software?
	A: Each library has it's own License. But all the scripts here are licensed
	   under Apache-2.0, so, for those, you can.

If you have any more questions, open an issue or e-mail me at dev@iotib.net