Building under Windows

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Digger can checkout and build any D version automatically for you. Only a D compiler is required. Digger will download all required dependencies by itself.

dub fetch digger
dub run digger

Among many other features, Digger can build older compiler versions or versions with a specific pull request added:

# build a specific D version
$ dub run digger -- build v2.064.2

# build for x86-64
$ dub run digger -- build --model=64 v2.064.2

# build commit from a point in time
$ dub run digger -- build "@ 3 weeks ago"

# build specified branch from a point in time
$ dub run digger -- build "2.065 @ 3 weeks ago"

# build with an added pull request
$ dub run digger -- build "master + dmd#123"

Use Digital Mars make

This page needs DigitalMars make (not to confuse with GNUMake). DigitalMars is part of the DMD Windows distribution and should be part of your PATH.

If you have GNUMake installed on your system too, use the full path to DigitalMars make: C:\D\dmd2\windows\bin\make.

Building with Visual Studio



  • Run the DMD Windows Installer and make sure that the binaries get added to the PATH (check "Add to Path")
  • Install VisualD (can be done via the DMD installer with the "Download VisualD" checkbox)
  • Make sure that dmd gets installed to C:\D\dmd2 (the default)

Clone repositories

Next step is to clone the 3 necessary source repos, dmd, phobos, and tools.

mkdir C:\Source\D
cd C:\Source\D
git clone
git clone
git clone

Make sure to pick a folder without white spaces or special characters to avoid any potential problems.

Building DMD

You should be able to build DMD using the visual studio solution found in: dmd\src\vcbuild A typical choice is to build the 64-bit debug version (the VisualD options are named 'Release' and 'x64').

A 'dmd.exe' should have been built and placed in C:\Source\D\dmd\generated\Windows\Debug\x64.

If you want the 32-bit counterparts, you will have to adjust accordingly. Most notably, using win32.mak Makefiles instead of the win64.mak files.

Building DRuntime

Make sure that Visual Studio tools are part of your PATH. One common way is to run 'vcvarsall.bat'. With Visual Studio 2017 this call is:

call "C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio\2017\Enterprise\VC\Auxiliary\Build\vcvarsall.bat" x64

Now, go into druntime:

cd C:\source\D\dmd\druntime

Then compile with DigitalMars make (not to confuse with GNUMake).

set VCDIR="C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio\2017\Enterprise\VC"
make -f win64.mak -j4 "VCDIR=%VCDIR%" target

For building on 32-bit with the Visual Studio Runtime, use {{{1}}}.

Building Phobos

cd C:\source\D\phobos
make -f win64.mak -j4 target

Building D

These instructions use the dmc tool chain.


On Windows, you will need D compiler, the DigitalMars C++ compiler, and, for 64-bit or 32-bit COFF builds, the Microsoft Windows SDK.

Assuming that make, dmc and dmd from digital mars are in your path and your sources are in C:\D\dmd2\src which has the following structure:


Note: tools is optional.

Alternatively, you may wish to clone the git repositories for each of the above using Git for Windows.

git Configuration

When cloning from the GitHub repositories you may encounter problems if your git configuration on Windows replaces line endings with the Windows variant (i.e. \r\n) instead of leaving it as \n, which is what D repositories require.

To check your settings, run git config core.autocrlf. If it prints true, set it to false with git config --global core.autocrlf false.

Before you start

The following instructions work for win32. May or may not work with win64. This scheme is a suggestion. These instructions should work when building from a clean repository, however, this repository contains autogenerated code that may be left behind after switching branches so running a git clean after switching branches is a good idea:

git clean -xfd

Building DMD

To build DMD compiler you should run the following commands (win32.mak file expects that HOST_DC variable is set to dmd):

set DM_HOME=C:\D
cd %DM_HOME%\dmd2\src\dmd\src
set HOST_DC=dmd
make -fwin32.mak release

From there, it is suggested to move the built binaries into your %DM_HOME%\windows\bin directory, and add that to your path:

mkdir %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\bin
copy *.exe %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\bin
set path=%DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\bin;%path%

From there, you have to create a sc.ini in your %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\bin directory (where dmd.exe is). It is suggested to just copy paste the one provided in the packaged 2.108.0, instead of writing your own, like:

copy "C:\Program Files\D\dmd2\windows\bin\sc.ini" %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\bin

Building D runtime

Make sure that you are using dmd compiled in previous step because older compiler might not compile the latest druntime code.

To build D runtime you should run the following commands:

cd %DM_HOME%\dmd2\src\druntime
make -fwin32.mak

Missing sppn.exe or cl.exe

  • For 32-bit if you don't have sppn.exe then probably dmc is not correctly installed. Download and replace your dm directory.
  • If you are using win64.mak, you may need to download and merge the dm folders.

Both zip files can be found here:

Building Phobos

Make sure that you are using dmd compiled in previous step because older compiler might not compile the latest phobos code.

To build Phobos you should run the following commands:

cd %DM_HOME%\dmd2\src\phobos
make -fwin32.mak

You should copy phobos lib into your %DM_HOME%\windows\lib folder:

mkdir %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\lib
copy phobos.lib %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\lib

Building rdmd

Optionally, you can build rdmd from source if you have checked out tools in your sources. Some additional libs might be required for build and can simply be copy pasted from the 2.108.0 package without overwriting your phobos.lib.

To build rdmd you should run the following commands:

cd %DM_HOME%\dmd2\src\tools
make -fwin32.mak rdmd

You should copy rdmd into your %DM_HOME%\windows\bin folder:

mkdir %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\lib
copy generated\windows\32\*.exe %DM_HOME%\dmd2\windows\bin

Thirdparty libraries

The last step is getting the additional libs. curl for D2 can be found at the bottom of the download section of [download].

Additional libs that are necessary can simply be copy pasted from the 2.108.0 package (without overwriting your phobos.lib).


The very last step is to verify that everything works by unittesting phobos:

cd %DM_HOME%\dmd2\src\phobos
make -fwin32.mak unittest

Common Windows issues

Missing MASM386

If when building druntime you get errors about missing MASM386, it's due to a required assembling of a file called minit.asm. However the druntime repository includes a prebuilt minit.obj file so you shouldn't need to assemble it again. As a workaround for the make error create an empty masm386.bat file and put it in a directory that's in your PATH.

Command prompt

It's also recommended that you use the cmd.exe terminal. Others, like PowerShell, are known to experience issues with legacy tools.

Intermediate files lead to several errors

The three main components (dmd, druntime, phobos) should always be built together with matching versions. The intermediate files generated by a previous build can lead to a failure so it's advisable to run

make -fwin32.mak clean

on each component before starting the process.

Using DigitalMars make for running the test suite

DMD's testsuite can't be run with DigitalMars make - use GNUMake. Refer to the instructions in Running the test suite on Windows.

Where to go from here

If you want to contribute to a D project, please continue with the starting as a contributor guide. If you want to contribute to Phobos, you may also read the contributing to Phobos guide.