Arni Magnusson arnima at hafro.is
Fri Jun 18 16:17:25 PDT 2010

> Can anyone let me know if I can run C++ code alone in the ADMB IDE or is 
> the IDE more specific to ADMB applications? The reason that I ask is 
> that I am new of ADMB and would like to use the IDE but also have 
> separate C++ code projects.

The answer is yes. Inside ADMB-IDE is the Emacs editor, and you can 
definitely use Emacs to work with C++. ADMB-IDE also comes with the GCC 
compiler for C++ and the GDB debugger, so in a way you're all set.

Emacs is a powerful editor, but the default settings are silly. You can 
configure it extensively, but here's how it works out of the box:


Start ADMB-IDE and open an existing hello.cpp. Notice that the mode line 
near the bottom of the frame says (C++/l Abbrev), and the code is shown 
using helpful colors.

Now run M-x compile [RET] (that's Alt-x compile enter). Emacs guesses that 
you want to run

   make -k

but delete that and type

   g++ -static -o hello hello.cpp

or if you're a fast typist

   g++ -s -static -Wall -o hello hello.cpp

and press enter.

The hello(.exe) executable is now ready. To run the executable from within 
Emacs, do M-! hello [RET] (that's Alt-Shift-1 hello enter). The minibuffer 
at the bottom of the frame should say "Hello world" if that's what the 
hello.cpp program is supposed to do.


Could that be any clunkier? The good news is that you can configure Emacs 
to be exceedingly smooth and efficient. As a trivial example, you could 
configure a personal "C++ hook" that lets f9 compile and f10 run the C++ 
program that you have open.

You see, in each mode, be it ADMB, C++, or something else, Emacs looks for 
your personal settings in so-called hooks. You can study a few hooks in 
the .emacs file that comes with ADMB-IDE, and then study some more 
starting from 

This takes years to learn, but it's a rewarding journey if you edit text 
files every day and enjoy tinkering. Emacs has modes for all major 
programming languages, sometimes with quite sophisticated tools, and you 
can use the same working environment in all operating systems. But I 
should also point out that there are many C++ IDEs that are more 


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