A Beginner’s Guide To Windows Tools For Developers

It’s hard to ignore the huge success that Microsoft has had in encouraging users to adopt Windows. Even today with competition from Linux, macOS and even more esoteric device choices such as Chromebooks with their ChromeOS Microsoft Windows is the overwhelmingly dominant choice for both business and home users. Whatever platform you target as a developer, the goal is always the same, creating practical, successful applications. Achieving that in the most optimal way requires carefully picking the best Windows tools for developers.

Developers want consistent, proven, reliable tools to create applications. Microsoft has created many different tools and libraries to accomplish all these things. There are currently three paths if you choose the Microsoft stack. These are WPF, WinForms, and UWP. 

If you have been following our articles, you might know that there is a benchmark where Embarcadero MVPs and expert developers built a calculator app with different technologies. This benchmark illustrated the average time to complete the assigned task and considered extended metrics such user-friendliness and as a result was also able to consider the general productivity is engendered in the developer. In other words, picking the right development tools and IDE software enhanced the optimal overall productivity of the software developer.

In summary, Delphi showed that you could build applications way faster in comparison to Electron and WPF technologies. Moreover, Delphi provides more security in Windows applications and no need for a runtime which greatly enhanced its stability.

Check out these articles to learn more about the benchmarks

Win32 (Windows API) with Delphi and C++

The Windows API or Win32 API allows applications to use the components of Windows. Win32 API is the best and only choice if you need to achieve the highest performance or efficiency, access native OS features, or target other technologies like DirectX.

Why is Win32 API the best choice?

Win32 API allows you to achieve the best performance for your app by taking direct control over memory allocation and performance-oriented CPU features like SSE or AVX instructions. 

Moreover, you can directly access DirectX technologies for low-level high-performance graphics access. 

Delphi’s VCL uses Win32 API and other Windows native libraries to produce an application, and that is why you get a swift product. Since C++ Builder also utilizes VCL, you can achieve that performance if you build your applications with C++ Builder. 

Furthermore, Visual Component Library is one of the best libraries to build Windows applications because it is stable, reliable, and up-to-date with new Windows features.

Can RAD Studio Delphi and C++Builder create apps 5x faster?

A Beginner's Guide To Windows Tools For Developers. Visual of RAD Studio

Use RAD Studio’s award-winning VCL framework for Windows and FireMonkey (FMX) visual framework to create cross-platform responsive UIs. Use VCL Styles at design time! Prototype stylish UIs even faster by seeing immediately at design-time how your styled forms and controls will look when running. FireMonkey design-time guidelines: Prototype quickly with visible lines and enhanced margin and padding support.

Here are our latest tutorials on improving Windows applications in 2022 and a beginner’s guide for Windows UI toolkits. Be sure to check them out and follow us here to learn more about other excellent Windows app development tools!

Are you looking for a lightweight but powerful C++ development environment??

Tens of millions know Dev-C++ of developers. It is one of the best-known lightweight ideas in the market. Dev-C++ is now sponsored by Embarcadero and has become Embarcadero Dev-C++, which has new modern UI and UX, and more functionalities added. 

A Beginner's Guide To Windows Tools For Developers. Ascreenshot of the Dev-C++ main IDE screen.

It is a full-featured Integrated Development Environment (IDE) and code editor for the C/C++ programming language. It uses the Mingw port of GCC (GNU Compiler Collection). Embarcadero Dev-C++ can also be used with Cygwin or any other GCC-based compiler. Embarcadero Dev-C++ is built using the latest version of Embarcadero Delphi. Embarcadero Dev-C++ has a low memory footprint because it is a native Windows application and does not use Electron.

Furthermore, you can find the source code of the Embarcadero Dev-C++ here and make contributions to make it better. 

How is UltraEdit the most advanced code editor?

Many code editors are in the market, but only some can handle big files and provide a smooth experience. One of them is the UltraEdit

Most customers say that UltraEdit is the Bugatti of code editors. Because UltraEdit can handle gigabytes of files and loads them in seconds. It is feature-rich and gives you all the tools in one place built-in. UltraEdit provides everything you need: column editing, customizable syntax highlighting, code folding, split-screen editor, RegExp search & replace in files.


Are you automating your build process with FinalBuilder?

RAD Studio’s Delphi and C++ Builder uses Microsoft software development tools like MSBuild to build executables. You can manually automate the build process by writing scripts, but it takes time, and managing several projects can be challenging. So, here I would like to recommend FinalBuilder. 

A Beginner's Guide To Windows Tools For Developers. The main FinalBuilder screen.

FinalBuilder allows you to automate build processes. With FinalBuilder, you don’t need to edit XML or write scripts. Visually define and debug your build scripts, then schedule them with windows scheduler, or integrate them with Continua CI, Jenkins, or any other CI Server.

With its extensive library of pre-written scripts, called actions, FinalBuilder has an action to automate every common task in a build process. It integrates with your existing compilers, version control systems, and testing tools.

A Beginner's Guide To Windows Tools For Developers. FinalBuilder in action.

Get InnoSetup, the free, fully professional install builder for Windows Developers

A Beginner's Guide To Windows Tools For Developers. The InnoSetup screen.

Since you are interested in Windows desktop development, you should know the InnoSetup tool. InnoSetup is a free installer creator tool for developers. Don’t be fooled by the fact it is free – it is one of the best install tools on the market and provides a wide range of features:

  • Supports the creation of a single EXE to install your program for easy online distribution. Disk spanning is also supported.
  • Standard Windows wizard interface.
  • Customizable setup types: e.g., Full, Minimal, Custom.
  • Complete uninstall capabilities.
  • Silent installs and uninstall.
  • Unicode installs.
  • Support for digitally signed installs and uninstalls, including dual signing (SHA1 & SHA256).
  • and more

Check out the latest version of the RAD Studio here – RAD Studio 11 Alexandria

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