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Hey guys,
So many times I came across source code of open source technologies, like OpenOffice, Ditto, BigAnt Messenger. They provide their source code too for free, but unfortunately I dont know how can I edit and compile those source code.
Can anyone please help in this?

Thanks guys in Advance.

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Last Post by mike_2000_17
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Usually there are text files in the package that tell you what to do. Many have a configure command that will check your system for needed dependencies and create a Makefile that you can use to build the source into the appropriate bits and pieces, which you can then install with the command "make install". Some don't go that way, but have scripts which do the "right" thing.

Of course, this is mostly a Linux thing. What OS are you running? Windows is another kettle of fish... :-)

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Thanks a lot for your kind attention "rubberman"... It means a lot to me..

Hey buddy I am currently working on Windows environment.. can you put some more light on this issue? Like how can I proceed further with Windows environment?

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but unfortunately I dont know how can I edit and compile those source code.

I'm a bit baffled by the simplicity of your question... Do you know how to program? You shouldn't try to delve into some open-source project's source code if you don't already have enough programming knowledge to understand a fraction of it. Learn to program first, then look into open-source projects.

Source files are just edited with anything from a simple text editor to a full-blown IDE (Integrated Development Environment). Assuming you are familiar with the language used in the projects, you should be able to see which files are source files and can be opened and edited.

When it comes to compiling, all decent open-source projects will have a "README.txt" file or similar instruction files in the top source directory. They will usually rely on configuration scripts or build-systems such as cmake, autoconf, makefiles, etc.. to automate the configuration of the compilation for your system, and check if you have all the required dependencies (which you may have to download, build and install too). And, of course, you need the appropriate compilers.

But overall, it is impossible for us to give you anything more specific without knowing the specific project, languages involved, and platforms involved.

Hey buddy I am currently working on Windows environment.. can you put some more light on this issue? Like how can I proceed further with Windows environment?

Windows is generally a bad development environment, for just about any language except .NET languages. In any case, there is no way that anyone can give you specific instructions without knowing the programming language(s) involved. For instance, I quickly looked up a few of the projects you mentioned, and they are, for the most part, a mix of C, C++, Java, and Python, and they all seem to use different build-systems, and one, none at all (which is terrible!).

Also, for a lot of open-source projects, you really need to follow the instructions (and if there aren't any, then it's probably not worth the effort). But, if any of these specific instructions are hard for you to understand or don't work, just come here and ask, and we'll be happy to help.

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