Freebyte's Guide to...
Free Cross-Platform
Programming
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Introduction
Free programming tools, interpreters and frameworks following the principle 'create once, compile anywhere' or 'create once, run anywhere'.
This means that once you have created your program using one of the tools listed on this page, you can compile or run it on multiple platforms without too many adaptations.
 
Contents
Free Cross-Platform Compilers
Free Cross-platform GUI Frameworks
Free Cross-platform Libraries
Free Multi-Platform Interpreters
Free Multi-Platform Databases
Related Freebyte Pages
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Free Cross-Platform Compilers
Code::BlocksA freeware open-source C++ IDE for Windows and Linux. It supports these compilers: GCC (MingW / Linux GCC), MSVC++, Digital Mars, Borland C++ 5.5, Open Watcom.
CygwinCygwin is a UNIX environment, developed by Red Hat, for Windows. It consists of two parts: A DLL (cygwin1.dll) which acts as a UNIX emulation layer providing substantial UNIX API functionality. A collection of tools, ported from UNIX, which provide UNIX/Linux look and feel. Compatible with Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP.
EcereA free cross-platform IDE (designer, debugger, code editor) and SDK (GUI framework, 3D and socket programming, etc.) for creating software for Windows and Linux. Ecere introduces eC, an object oriented language derived from and fully compatible with C.
Free PascalFreeware open-source 32 bit and 64 bit Pascal compiler which runs on Linux, Windows, MAC, Free BSD and more . Some nice Free Pascal video tutorials can be found here.
Compiler targets: Linux, Win32, Win64, MAC OS X, FreeBSD, Mac OS classic, DOS, WinCE, OS/2, Netware (libc and classic) and MorphOS. Supported processors: Intel x86, Amd64/x86_64, ARM, PowerPC, Sparc, 680x0.
OberonOberon is the name of a modern integrated software environment. It is a single-user, multi-tasking system that runs on bare hardware or on top of a host operating system. Oberon is also the name of a programming language in the Pascal/Modula tradition. The Oberon project was launched in 1985 by Niklaus Wirth and Jürg Gutknecht. Although the project was originally targeted towards in-house hardware, the language and system have now been ported to many computer platforms and multiple CPU's.
Freeware, Open Source.
RevolutionMulti-platform programming tool implementing the the Mac HyperCard language. It enables you to create compiled applications for MAC OS X, classic Mac OS, Windows, Linux/Unix with native look and feel on all platforms. Avaiable editions: Free, Professional and Small Business editions.
Ultimate++Ultimate++ consists of Set of cross-platform Windows and Linux libraries ("packages"), widgets (user-interface elements) an IDE, a lay-out designer for designing dialogs, image designer for designing graphical elements, language editor for managing internationalized text strings, etc.
V IDEIntegrated Development Environment for the GNU g++ compiler, Borland C++ 5.5, and the standard Sun Java Development Kit. Suitable for Windows and Linux.
WideStudioFree cross-platform IDE including application framework. Supports the platforms: Linux, MAC, Windows, Pocket PC, FreeBSD, Solaris, etc. and the languages: C++, Java, Python, Ruby, Ocaml.
 
Free Cross-platform GUI Frameworks
The libraries in this section can be used in combination with C++ compilers on Unix/Linux, MAC and Windows. In this way, you can create one GUI application which can be compiled on multiple operating systems.
FLTKA cross-platform C++ GUI toolkit for UNIX/Linux, Windows, and MacOS X providing modern GUI functionality without the usual bloat. It also supports 3D graphics via OpenGL and its built-in GLUT emulation.
Fox ToolkitCross-platform C++ user-interface library, freeware, open-source.
GTK+A multi-platform toolkit for creating graphical user interfaces in C++, Perl and Python. Offering a complete set of widgets, GTK+ is suitable for projects ranging from small one-off projects to complete application suites. It is available under the GNU LGPL license, allowing it to be used by all developers, including those developing proprietary non open-source software, without any license fees or royalties.
LGICross-platform C++ framework for abstracting out all the operating system dependencies that you can produce portable code. It handles all the graphical interface functions, threading and semaphores, network connectivity and lots of other bits and pieces to help build small, fast and reliable applications.
QtCross-platform C++ GUI framework.
The GUI Toolkit,
Framework Page
A comprehensive reference on toolkits for building graphical user interfaces (GUIs), with emphasis on resources for Free Software (Open Source)
VV is a free, multiple platform C++ graphical user interface framework designed to make it easy to write C++ GUI applications, commercial, shareware, or freeware. V is available for X Athena, X Motif/Lesstif, all Windows platforms, and OS/2.
Whisper2C++ application framework for the Mac, Unix and Windows.
wxWidgetsAPI for writing GUI applications on multiple platforms. Link with the appropriate library for your platform (Windows/Unix/Mac, others coming shortly) and compiler (almost any popular C++ compiler), and your application will adopt the look and feel appropriate to that platform. Additionally: online help, network programming, streams, clipboard and drag and drop, multi-threading, image loading and saving in a variety of popular formats, database support, HTML viewing and printing, etc. Freeware, Open Source
ZooLibA cross-platform application framework, enables you to write a single set of C++ sources and compile them to native executables to run on MacOS, Windows, BeOS or Unix/Linux.
 
Free Cross-platform Libraries
Most of the libraries in this section can be used in combination with C++ compilers on Unix/Linux, MAC and Windows.
Amanith FrameworkA cross-platform (Linux, Win32, Mac OX X, FreeBSD, Linux and IRIX) open source C++ framework for 2D and 3D vector graphics that includes 2D curves, a 2D font engine, bitmap vectorizer, tessellator, and an OpenGL extensions manager.
BoostFree portable C++ source libraries extending the standard library: streams, buffers, concurrency, regex, date/time, etc.
FModFMOD is a cross platform audio library to let you easily implement the latest audio technologies into your software.
FreeTypeA free, high-quality, and portable font engine, which supports True Type and Open Type Fonts as well as unicode.
International components
for Unicode
Widely used set of C/C++ and Java libraries for Unicode support; open source.
OpenGLHigh-performance cross-platform 3D graphics library. Elegant API. It can be used for a variety of purposes, such as: animations, virtual reality, game-programming, simulations, etc.
Simple Direct Media LibraryA cross-platform C/C++ multimedia library designed to provide low level access to audio, keyboard, mouse, joystick, 3D hardware via OpenGL, and 2D video framebuffer.
The Standard
Function Library
Freeware C++ library providing functions covering a wide range of areas, such as: compression, encryption, encoding, conversion, date/time/calendars, directory/environment access, strings, file access, Internet/network programming, etc.
WenQuanYiIntends to provide the open-source community with the most complete, standard compliant, high-quality Chinese fonts and resources. TrueType and bitmap fonts at various sizes/styles are developed to be freely available to users.
xtklibFree C++ library for Windows and Unix (Linux/BSD) with: streams, unicode strings, sockets, file access, exceptions hierarchy, etc.
 
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Free Multi-Platform Interpreters
ChA freeware C/C++ interpreter for cross-platform scripting, shell programming, 2D/3D plotting, numerical computing, and embedded scripting. Suitable for: Windows, Linux, HP-UX, Solaris, QNX, FreeBSD and Mac OS X.
Chipmunk BasicTraditional, console mode BASIC interpreter. Can run many old BASIC programs with little or no modification. Versions are available for MacOS, Palm, Linux, Windows, SUN, HPUX, SGI Irix.
JavaDesigned by SUN. Probably the most famous of all cross-platform interpreted languages.
PythonPython is an interpreted, interactive, object-oriented programming language. It is often compared to Tcl, Perl, Scheme or Java.
Python combines remarkable power with very clear syntax. It has modules, classes, exceptions, very high level dynamic data types, and dynamic typing. There are interfaces to many system calls and libraries, as well as to various windowing systems (X11, Motif, Tk, Mac, MFC). New built-in modules are easily written in C or C++.
The Python implementation is portable: it runs on many brands of UNIX, on Windows, DOS, OS/2, Mac, Amiga, etc. Python is copyrighted but freely usable and distributable, even for commercial use.
RebolFree for non-commercial use. Very easy to use and elegant interpreted language useful for creating Web applications. Rebol supports object oriented programming. It includes 14 Internet protocols, like HTTP, FTP, CGI, SMTP, POP, etc.
Rebol runs on more than 20 platforms, which means that the scripts listed on the Rebol site will not only be able to run on Windows but will also run on Solaris, Irix, NetBSD, OpenBSD, BSDi, BeOS, Mac, AIX, HPUX, Amiga, Linux, etc.
Rebol/Command, (which is not free) provides additional features:
Direct database access to: Oracle 8 (Windows, Solaris Sparc, and Linux libc6 systems) MySQL 3, ODBC access (from Windows) to: Access, Excel, MS SQL Server, Oracle, MySQL.
Also: FastCGI, SSL, TLS, HTTPS, SSLv2, SSLv3 and TLSv1, DES, 3DES, ARCFOUR, RSA keys and DSA/DH keys, Blowfish, Rijndael/AES.
SqueakSqueak, a free, open, and portable Smalltalk-80 interpreter. Has a virtual machine which is also written in Smalltalk. A translation utility is available to convert the Smalltalk source code into C source code for high speed performance. Available for Windows, Mac, Unix, and other operating systems.
Tcl/TkOpen source scripting language for a variety of platforms, such as Windows, MAC, Linux, Amiga, Solaris.
See also The Tcl'ers Wiki
 
Free Multi-Platform Databases
Berkeley DBOpen Source embedded database system. It consists of a toolkit that provides high-performance built-in database support for desktop and server applications. Access through B+tree, Extended Linear Hashing, Fixed and Variable-length records, and Queues. No support for SQL. Also: transactions, database recovery, online backups, and separate access to locking, logging and shared memory caching subsystems.
Supports C, C++, Java, Tcl, Perl, and Python APIs. Runs on Windows 95/98/NT/2000, VxWorks, Linux and various other types of Unix.
Freeware when distributed with non-commercial or open-source applications.
MySQLWell-known freeware, multi-user, multi-threaded SQL database server. Versions available for Win95/Win98/NT, Linux, Solaris, FreeBSD, AIX, SunOS, etc. JDBC drivers available.
Freeware under the GPL license.
InterbaseOpen source, freeware version of Interbase
Interbase is a relatively small yet powerful database (12 MB, which is not much compared to Oracle, MS SQL Server, Sybase, etc.), Versions available for Windows, Linux and Solaris.
Free security patches.
 
Related Freebyte Pages
Free Java ProgrammingFree Java IDE's, compilers, object libraries, distribution and install tools, database systems, and tutorials.
Free Web DevelopmentFree Web design and Web development tools. Free scripts, templates, tutorials and other resources. Free and easy-install Web servers (Apache + MySQL + PHP + more) for Linux, Windows, MAC.
Free Pascal
Programming
Free pascal compilers, tutorials, tools and resources.
Free C++ (and C)
Programming
Free C++ IDE's, compilers, libraries, tools, resources and tutorials for Linux/Unix, Windows, MAC, etc.
Free DatabasesFreeware and open-source SQL database systems, freeware database tools, open-source (SQL) database libraries for Java, C++, Delphi.
Free Operating SystemsFree operating systems, such as: Linux, FreeBSD, Windows clones, emulators and much more. Also: interesting alternative commercial operating systems.
Free Delphi
Programming
Free Delphi compilers, components, programming, libraries, tools and resources.
Free Assembler
Programming
Free tools for the assembler programmer for a variety of platforms and processors.
Free Basic ProgrammingFree Basic IDE's and Compilers, free Basic Interpreters, tutorials and resources.
Free Cobol
Programming
Free Cobol compilers, tutorials and resources.
Free Help File
Authoring
Free help-file authoring tools and programs to create WinHelp and HTMLHelp files.
Free Programming ToolsFree programming tools for Windows, Linux, etc. Free C++, C, Delphi, Basic, Assembler, Cobol, Pascal, Java, SQL, Databases; links to free compilers, databases, interpreters, IDE's, installers, components, libraries, languages, helpfile generators and more.
Free Unicode and
Multi-lingual
Programming tools
Free C++, Delphi and Java Unicode Libraries, free fonts and font-engines, free unicode resources and related information.
Free Web DevelopmentFree Web design and Web development tools. Free scripts, templates, tutorials and other resources. Free and easy-install Web servers (Apache + MySQL + PHP + more) for Linux, Windows, MAC.
Free Website ToolsFree Website templates, clock widgets, counters, Web statistics, polls to put on your site, guest books to put on your site, DNS services, image optimizers and converters, background creation programs, URL forwarding services, site search engines, HTML editors, HTML and link validation tools, tutorials, resources, etc.
Free Home pagesPublish your own Web pages for free! Find the best service to host your home page. Create your Web page without any knowledge of HTML. Free services which enable you to run your own CGI scripts (PHP, ASP, Perl, etc.).
 
Information wanted!
If you know of any good free programming tools, like compilers, databases, assemblers/disassemblers, components, libraries, languages, online books, help tools, icons, websites, which are not listed in the Freebyte programming section, please let us know!
 
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Last updated on March 11, 2008

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