Alternative Open Watcom distribution

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Although there is no more official distribution of OpenWatcom as a collection of .zip archives after OpenWatcom 1.3, you can download OW 1.7a (1.7.1), and previous releases, as multiple zip files from ibiblio. These archives are prepared by Arkady Belousov and placed on ibiblio by Jim Hall.

Here you will find archives with the same layout as the OW 1.3 distribution, including the files license.txt, readme.txt (short introduction) and descript.ion (archives description file, compatible with FAR Manager, NDOS and 4DOS).

Note that the either of the official installers (Windows or OS/2) can be unzipped using standard unzip tools. However, this unofficial distribution allows you to download a subset of the original packages which may be easier for people with limited resources (low disk space or slow network links).

Important addition into given alternative distribution is CLIB.7Z archive, which includes sources for RTL (Run Time Library), not included into original binary distribution. These sources are invaluable source of information, which complements RTL documentation and may clarify all dark questions, related to RTL. CLIB.7Z archive packed by portable free archiver 7-Zip, this reduces sources size to 800 kb versus 3.4 Mb of zip archive.

How might this distribution be useful? Suppose you only need the DOS host and the DOS target. The only components you need are:

1. License and Descriptions, 3 files/~30 kb

  LICENSE.TXT README.TXT DESCRIPT.ION

2. Base package, 6 archives/~2.6 Mb

  CM_CORE_ALL.ZIP CM_CORE_DOS.ZIP CM_CORE_DOSWIN.ZIP
     CORE_ALL.ZIP                    CORE_DOSWIN.ZIP
                                                       C_DOSWIN.ZIP

3. C++ addition to base package, 1 archive/~1.3 Mb

                                                     CPP_DOSWIN.ZIP

4. DOS extenders (may be downloaded all, one or nothing), 4 archives/~700 kb

  EXT_CAUSEWAY.ZIP EXT_DOS32A.ZIP EXT_DOS4GW.ZIP EXT_PMODEW.ZIP

5. Debugger, 5 archives/~960 kb

  CM_DBG_ALL.ZIP CM_DBG_DOS.ZIP
                 CM_DBG_DOSWIN.ZIP CM_DBG_DOSOS2.ZIP CM_DBG_MISC1.ZIP

6. C RTL (standard headers and libraries), 5 archives/~1.7 Mb

  CM_CLIB_HDR.ZIP CM_CLIB_A16.ZIP CLIB_A16.ZIP
                  CM_CLIB_D16.ZIP CLIB_D16.ZIP

7. C RTL for DOS extenders, 2 archives/~620 kb

                  CM_CLIB_A32.ZIP
                  CM_CLIB_D32.ZIP

8. C++ RTL, 3 archives/~1.1 Mb

     PLIB_HDR.ZIP CM_PLIB_A16.ZIP PLIB_A16.ZIP

9. C++ RTL for DOS extenders, 2 archives/~690 kb

                  CM_PLIB_A32.ZIP PLIB_A32.ZIP

10. Help files, 2 archives/~2.1 Мb

  CM_HLP_DOS.ZIP HLP_DOS.ZIP

11. IDE, help and samples for IDE, 3 archives/~610 kb

  CM_IDE_ALL.ZIP CM_IDE_DOS.ZIP IDE_SAMPLES.ZIP

12. Examples and RTL sources, 5 archives/~1.3 Mb

  CM_SAMPLES.ZIP CLIB_SAMPLES.ZIP PLIB_SAMPLES.ZIP MISC_SRC.ZIP CLIB.7Z

The total is only 41 files, or 14 Mb. There is also a minimal set (only C, no C++ / help / samples / debugger), which includes sets [2] and [6] above, consisting of 11 files, or ~4.4 Mb. Now compare this with original monolithic distribution size (62 Mb). Note: because the DOS executables require DOS4GW to run, the EXT_DOS4GW.ZIP file in [4] will also be needed.

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