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x86/x64 Win32 programming using Visual C++ Express 2008 tips

    General discussion

  • This is very popular theme, as I know. So my instructions are here.

    Tested on:
    • Windows XP SP2, XP SP3: Compile only solution, you cannot start and debug x64 applications on a 32-bit PC.
    • Windows XP x64 SP2: Compile and debug support.
    • Windows Vista 23/64bit (not tested, but I think it should work fine, too)
    1. Download and install Windows Server 2008 SDK after Visual Studio Express (Important!)
    Select these components when installing: Windows Headers and Libraries, Visual C++ Compilers

    Note: You can install Visual Studio Express without MSDN Express before, because the latest Windows SDK help will be used instead. It is preffered way, because Windows SDK contains full development information.

    2. Go to VC++ menu:

    Tools -> Options -> Projects and Solutions -> VC++ Directories

    Make new paths at the begin of the list:

    Executable files:
    $(VCInstallDir)bin\x86_amd64

    Library files:
    $(VCInstallDir)lib\amd64
    $(WindowsSdkDir)\lib\x64

    To swith back to x86 code generation just move these lines to the end of the directories list. Unfortunately the Express Edition does not allow using of Win64 platform in your projects, so you may add a configuration only.

    Project option for x64 builds:

    Linker -> Advanced -> Target Machine : MachineX64 (/MACHINE:X64)

    Using these modifications Visual Studio will call x64 cross compilers from Windows SDK

    Also here is a tip to integrate the Windows SDK help:

    VC++: Press F1
    Enter URL in the help system:
    ms-help://MS.VSCC.v90/dv_vscccommon/local/collectionmanager.htm
    Select Microsoft Windows SDK and Microsoft MSDN Express Library 2008
    Click Update VSCC
    Close VS and Help
    VC++: F1 to update
    Filtered by: (no filter)

    And a tip to use .RC file editor:

    Right click on a rc file: > Open With > Source Code (Text) Editor. Set as Default

    PS Thank for Microsoft for the Visual Studio 2008 IDE. I love it! Very comfortably developmend and debugging with this version now. Also thank for integrating x64 compilers to the Windows SDK.
    Monday, March 24, 2008 9:16 PM

All replies

  • Thanks, this article provided exactly what I needed. I suggest adding to the library files in step (2)

    $(VCInstallDir)atlmfc\lib\amd64

    Friday, February 4, 2011 5:23 AM
  • That's me as exactly what I need, unfortunately I can not solve the problem with the explanations provided.
    I can not find directory ". \ bin \ x86_amd64."
    My environment is as follows:
    - Microsoft Windows Server 2003 x64 R2
    - Visual C + + Express 2008
    - Windows SDK (http://msdn.microsoft.com/fr-fr/library/ms717328 (en-us, VS.85).aspx)

    Although I seem to have installed everything needed, I still can not compile my application to the 64bit.

    Thank you in advance for your answers
    Thursday, February 10, 2011 3:56 PM