On the Road in Europe – Take 2

by hjanssen on October 29, 2008 12:38pm

Wednesday – Day two for my IPC in Mainz conference, which is a developer orientated PHP conference.

Very well attended. The most negative thing I can say about this conference is that for some unknown (but brilliant beyond my level of comprehension) reason the venue is a 30 minute cab drive from the Speaker hotel. And the shuttle provided in the morning leaves every 30 minutes, has 5 seats and has a line of 20+ people for it in the morning. 

And yes, there are hotels closer by.

It is pretty cool to see how things changed in the last few years; people do not stop/point and stare anymore when they see Microsoft people walking around and actively engaging. People are happy to see us.

There are a lot sessions on a variety of topics, but I get the most out of talking to people outside of these sessions.  I am starting to lose track with everybody I have talked to.

Anyhoot, I had a good conversation with Brian Akers. For those who do not know Brian, he is one of the people behind Drizzle. He gave a keynote yesterday that was extremely well attended and talked about the state of Drizzle, which is starting to become a really interesting Database.

One session that was pretty unique was Pierre Joye and Garrett Serack doing a joint session on how to build PHP on Windows. This used to require the sacrifice of your favorite item, standing on your head, facing the North and chanting to RA to get it to build.

The work we have done with the PHP community to make PHP on Windows the best possible platform in the past few months has been greatly improved and accelerated.  All old libraries have been updated to their latest versions, something that had not been done in over 10 years for some of them. More importantly, these libraries are now the same versions (and thus have the same behavior) as their Linux counterpart.

Additionally the build system used was VC6, which means Visual Studio 1998!!. The build system is now VC9 or Visual studio 2008. And, depending on the speed of your machine, it builds in a few minutes. And viola, a brand new, shiny, hot from the oven, newly minted PHP.

Now we have a great place to start from, a build for Windows that we have all the code for, a build with a compiler that comes out of this century. That will leave us ready to do the next steps, optimizing PHP on Windows. And that is what we will be working on for the foreseeable future. If you can/want to please participate.

These changes are incorporated into the latest build starting with PHP 5.3. You can download this here.

If you want to check out in person what we did, and how you now can build PHP for Windows, check out this link.

BTW, Pierre and Garrett both have the misfortune to report to me at the OSTC. And yes, there are questions about their sanity

A few more days, and then back home. Where my wife, kid and dog claim they are looking forward to having me back again after 2 weeks.  Off to get some rest…….

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