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Re: [XBoard-devel] WinBoard installer

From: Eric Mullins
Subject: Re: [XBoard-devel] WinBoard installer
Date: Sun, 07 Jun 2009 15:07:40 -0600
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20090409)

h.g. muller wrote:
To return to thi issue: I did not succeed in testing the Polyglot from the Gold Pack with Win95. When I tried to write it on a floppy from my Win2K machine (where I brought it with a memory stick), the floppy invriable becomes unreadable both on my Win95 laptop and the Win2k machine, and is even unformattable on the Win2k machine after that. Wen I reboot the Win2k machine under Win98, the Polyglot seems to work, though. But that probably doen't prove anything, as I suppose the problem you mension is specific to Win95 only.

It is. I have a 95 machine that I keep around for one very old hardware-specific game. But I do test chess software on it from time to time, mostly because I can do so easily-- it's on my home network, so I don't need to use sneaker-net with a floppy. Engines are what bother me the most when it comes to 95 support. They don't make any system calls that 95 doesn't have, but they won't work because they were compiled with Visual Studio 2005 or later. (Its CRT initializes by making calls 95 doesn't have)

It is technically possible to create 95 compatible programs using Visual Studio 2005, but you have to go through extra steps to do so, and in practice, nobody does. The latest Hiarcs to work in 95 is 10, Rybka 1.2f doesn't work in 95, and yet the latest naum and bright work in 95. I have several Togas that work in 95, but most speed-compiles tend not to because of the compiler used (Cyclone 3.4 being one exception that DOES work in 95). I have my own speed compiles of various Toga versions that work in 95, and generally are faster too. Heh. Anyway, it's a crapshoot when it comes to engines.
I would be very interested to have your patches to make Polyglot work under Win95. Although in case a choice has to be made, I would definitely prefer including a Polyglot that can run without cygwin1.dll over one that would work on Win95, it would be good to have both.
Anything relating to the affinity option must be stripped. You could leave in the option, and just not make the system call, and that would work, but then you'd have an uci option that doesn't do anything. I basically just conditionally compiled that code depending on a definition: WIN95. I can send you the polyglot source I use, but it's rather customized, but based on 1.4w12 mostly. Except I've converted it to C. It doesn't have any of the book changes by Michel van den Bergh, nor any of his winboard extensions.

I use the same source for windows and linux, which, btw, is why I am in favor of linking with cygwin1.dll-- that way you run much more code in common. That makes it very easy to keep source that compiles in either OS, and keep out bugs specific to one OS.

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