I started by updating everything. Even though my Dell was brand new I spent several hours waiting for Build 1709 updates (Windows 10 Fall Creators Update).
Uninstall The Whole Lot
Next, after reboots and “don’t turn off your computer” progress bars from the previous step, I uninstalled all software I hated. Bloatware, crapware, things I didn’t want, my new computer came with a lot of it.
Apt / Yum / Homebrew
This is a new computer with nothing on it so a good opportunity to start off on the right foot with an apt alternative. I installed Chocolatey.
A common misconception is that you need a web server like IIS, Apache, or Nginx to get started with PHP7 development. In fact, PHP7 has its own built in web server that you can invoke at the command prompt. Many modern PHP frameworks support this, such as Phalcon PHP.
PHP7 is a general purpose scripting language well suited for web development. Composer is the defacto package manager for PHP7. This tutorial will show you how to install PHP7 and Composer on Windows 10 for use in a command prompt.
A common misconception is that you need a web server like IIS, Apache, or Nginx to get started with PHP7 development. In fact, PHP7 has its own built in web server that you can invoke at the command prompt. Modern PHP frameworks such as Opulence, Symfony, Cake, Laravel, WordPress, and many more support this.
“Shut up, Windows 10” is a free must-have tool to protect your privacy. Every listed setting can be clicked to reveal a full description of what toggling it on/off implies. The actions menu has an easy to use recommended defaults.
I have a Cannon PowerShot camera. When I take videos it records .MOV files.
On Windows 10 I use Picasa to organize my pictures. To import and view MOV files in Picasa I need to install QuickTime.
Regrettably, the QuickTime installer doesn’t work on Windows 10.
One “recommended workaround” is to install the K-Lite Codec pack. When I tried to install it I was prompted by this crap:
This is the primary reason why the Windows software ecosystem sucks. Searching for straightforward solutions lands you on the worst snake oil and sleaze bag sites. They embed their garbage in “next next” dialogue hell.
Always pay attention when installing software because often, a Windows software installer includes optional installs, such as this MyStart toolbar which is essentially a Trojan horse.
PS: The K-Lite Codec pack did not solve my problem. I uninstalled and opted for QuickTime alternative instead.
cwRsync is a standalone version of rsync for Windows that doesn’t require Cygwin to be installed. I don’t have Cygwin installed because Git For Windows includes Git Bash and this is “good enough.” With a regular standalone cwRsync installation Cygwin will never be in the PATH and Vagrant will never add the required /cygdrive prefix.
Add `C:\Program Files (x86)\cwRsync` (or wherever you installed) to your path. To avoid problems make sure this string is placed before `C:\Program Files\Git\cmd` and/or `C:\Program Files\Git\mingw64\bin;C:\Program Files\Git\usr\bin`
Add the following system variable: `CYGWIN = nodosfilewarning`
Git for Windows is based on MinGw. cwRsync is based on Cygwin. You cannot run Vagrant & cwRsync from Git Bash because cwRsync includes it’s own incompatible SSH binary. If you try you will get the following error:
rsync error: error in rsync protocol data stream (code 12) at io.c(226) [Receive r=3.1.0]
Instead, when launching Vagrant use Microsoft PowerShell.
Two weeks ago I drank the cool-aid and switched my laptop to Windows 10.
I haven’t used Windows on my personal computer for twelve years. This is a big deal for me. I ran Ubuntu and OSX before that.
As a LAMP developer the switch has been painful. Here are my top 3 pain points:
PuTTY , an app released in 1998, is still the best option for SSH on Windows. Actually, KiTTY is but you need to run PuTTy tools like Pageant or Key Generator do anything useful. I spend too much time painstakingly converting perfectly good SSH keys into strange PPK files. I squint click through a tree of options to do the most basic of tasks like login without password.
A better SSH for Windows might be GIT-SCM. When you install this you get Git Bash which has SSH. To be honest the Git Bash terminal is open 100% of the time I am sitting at my desktop. An unfortunate island of isolation that my other Windows tools are constantly fighting against…
SSH toolkits are BSD licensed. The fact that Microsoft hasn’t included SSH in Powershell by now is simply unacceptable. If Microsoft seriously wants web developers checking out Windows 10 then this is the biggest road block or, more to the point, this is the road that will lead me back to Linux when I can’t take it anymore.
As a developer my monitor resolution is 1920 x 1080 (or higher!). In Windows 10 no matter where I start I’m pretty much guaranteed that three clicks in I time travel back to Windows NT. Tiny, ugly, anti-responsive dialogues that require toothpick like clicking to change every day web developer configurations. Come on Microsoft, even Linux isn’t this ugly in 2015!
Hyper-V support in Vagrant! This is actually the main reason I switched. Hyper-V is Microsoft’s competition to Virtualbox. Conclusion? Don’t believe the hype.
I spent days trying to get Vagrant to provision a LAMP stack using Hyper-V. I even spent $159.82 CAD to upgrade from Windows 10 Home to Pro so that I could activate this feature.
Hours wasted. I failed. Or more specifically I succeeded and it sucked for web development as I know it. I went back to Virtualbox. On the plus side at least SMB shares work (with caveats!).
Here is a list of URLs for anyone who dares try this themselves. Maybe you’ll have better luck than me?
I’m still a LAMP developer at heart, with all the Stockholm Syndrome that comes from making a living with PHP, but Microsoft is changing.
Most notably C# is now open source. In 2014 I worked a job where I coded C# and, well, I liked it. For desktop, for tablet, for command line, I actually think the .NET ecosystem is pretty great. For web? For backend? Absolutely not. That said, all things considered, I decided I could no longer simply put my fingers in my ears singing “Na na na na I can’t hear you!”
Yes, I understand the distinction between Libre and Open and at this point in my life I am willing to make the trade off. I think Microsoft is setting up for the next decade and by me switching my laptop I am making a bet.
For this to pay off Microsoft needs to accept that .NET is not the dominant web development platform and attract those developers anyways. If they make life easier for the eclectic ecosystem that is the *NIX backend, then mobile and desktop will follow.