Learn C: Setting up the environment

This entry is part 1 of 7 in the series Learn C

Let’s start with the C language first.

The first thing is to get your computer set up so that you have a compiler to compile C.

This post will use the GNU C and if you prefer, you can set up the Visual Studio shown in a later post.

GNU (Geez, Not Unix) C compiler can be downloaded from http://mingw.com.  Visit the website and download the MinGW installation manager.


From the installation manager download gcc-core, gcc-g++, binutils, and the MinGW runtime. Next set the path of the windows to the bin directory of MinGW.

Now that you have the environment set up, you can write your first C program.


To C or to C++ first?

That indeed is the first question that you should ask if you are very new to programming. While it makes sense to jump straight to C++, I recommend that you start with C first.

This is not to immediately master C programming but to get the basic correct in programming.

If you start first from C, you could learn variables and learn how to construct a function. If you first start with C++, you will have to dive in to learning creating Objects, constructing classes etc.

This is a lot more difficult if you have not learnt other programming languages such as PASCAL.

After learning C, it is much more easier to move to learning Javascript and PHP as both languages have syntax and structure very similar to C.

First web programming language to learn

If you are in school, the first programming language that you will learn is likely to be Pascal or C.

I think this is the right sequence to learn programming.  C and Pascal are non Object Oriented and they provide a great platform for you to get yourself introduced to syntax, function, and variables.