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Build Vim in Windows with Cygwin

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Tip 531 Printable Monobook Previous Next

created 2003 · complexity basic · author maxiangjiang · version 6.0

This tip is deprecated for the following reasons:

The CVS server for Vim is no longer available. Getting the Vim source with Mercurial is now the recommended method, then you will need to compile as detailed in the rest of this tip

This tip is for those who are interested in building gvim.exe on Windows without using MSVC or BCC. The condition is that cygwin is installed.

Following are the three steps (under any shell and any directory).

cvs -z3 co vim
cd vim/src
make -f Make_cyg.mak IME=yes

I have tested under Windows 2000 and have used my own gvim.exe for months without any problem.


Dan Sharp has an end-to-end solution for almost all problems for Vim compiling on Windows:

Use mingw32 -- gcc for windows. Builds native exe.


MinGW: A collection of freely available and freely distributable Windows specific header files and import libraries combined with GNU toolsets that allow one to produce native Windows programs that do not rely on any 3rd-party DLLs.

Note that the resulting gvim.exe built from cygwin package is "native". It has no dependancy on cygwin.dll at all.

The gvim.exe produced does not use cygwin-style paths. I've got a lot of cygwin mounts that I would like to use.

If you want a Vim which understands Cygwin-style paths and runs seamlessly from a Cygwin bash prompt, I recommend the Console Vim build that comes with Cygwin. You will still need a different executable such as the one described above (gvim.exe and/or vim.exe) to run in Windows outside the Cygwin "Unix-like" environment. --Tonymec 16:03, 21 August 2009 (UTC)

The CVS command "cvs -z3 co vim" no longer works as the domain no longer exists. I was looking to this help to give me a more definitive way to compile vim under Cygwin64. The packaged vim in the current distro does not get along with packages under .vim/bundle/vundle (I believe because the version is too old), and finds a lot of things it doesn't understand. Compiling would be great, except that I ran into problems. I compiled it in a way that defaulted into UNIX (probably wrong, but Cygwin behaves as a UNIX-like system, so it was the closest thing I could think of). 03:29, October 2, 2013 (UTC)

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