PowerBASIC offers five commercial compilers, each of which may fit your
needs in a different way. It's not surprising that we often hear the
question "Which compiler should I choose?" Well, the answer depends upon
your personal goals, and the type of programs you need to create. Stay
with us for a minute, and we'll work out your particular answer.
In this article, we'll concentrate on the differences in these compilers,
so you can make an informed choice. We won't try to talk about every
possible feature here. Of course, complete specifications are available
in the PowerBASIC Product Catalog, so it would be good to visit there soon.
For questions that may not have been fully covered, please leave Feedback.
We'll do our best to get you a prompt response.
This is the "Flagship" of PowerBASIC Compilers. Our Premier Compiler for
the discerning programmer. Breathtaking performance, with an ease-of-use
you'll find startling. Of course, you can't overlook DDT, the
PowerBASIC exclusive "Dynamic Dialog Tools". With PowerBASIC and DDT,
you'll create GUI programs (Graphical User Interface) with the real
Look'n'Feel of Windows. Dialogs, Pull-Down Menus, ToolBars, Buttons,
Status Bars, ListViews and TreeViews... all the great features for the
essence of Windows. Yes, it's a bit more work than ordinary text mode, but
just look at the results. With PowerBASIC 10, you'll create programs that
look as good as they perform. The screen-shot above shows a very good
example of a GUI (Graphical User Interface).
DDT is a unique set of functions which allow you to create Dynamic Forms
on the fly. With DDT, you'll easily add, change, or remove any control
while your program is running. You'll resize, change colors, display
hundreds of different "looks" any time you need them. All without
megabytes of run-time code in external DLLs. Not only that, PowerBASIC
executables are downright tiny! They can be 10 times, 20 times, even 100
times smaller than what you get from BloatWare Compilers. You know, using
PowerBASIC 10 for Windows, it's really not unusual to see a substantial GUI
application that's under a megabyte in size.
PowerBASIC is compatible with all 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows,
including Vista and Windows 7. It offers complete OOP support for both
internal objects and COM. You'll get a complete macro facility, regular
expressions, an inline assembler, and access to gigabytes of memory. You'll
get Threads for multi-core programming, and TCP/UDP to communicate with
other computers, mail servers, and even more. Plus, a great IDE/Debugger
with Step, Trace, Animate, Profile, and Call Stacks.
Of course, you can team up PB/Win with PowerBASIC Forms, our Drag'n'Drop
Visual Designer. It's the quickest GUI generation in town!
This is one interesting product. It's our premier text-mode counterpart
to PowerBASIC 10 for Windows. It creates a simpler user interface, without
all the GUI components. The screen-shot above shows a very good example.
There's no fluff, no animated puppets, just good calculations and good
information for whatever your needs.
The Console Compiler uses familiar functions like PRINT, LOCATE, COLOR,
LINE INPUT, even LPRINT. In fact, that's the only real difference between
our Text-Mode and our GUI compilers: the presentation on the screen.
One does it with fancy windows, the other with easy to read text that
looks a lot like a DOS program. If you don't need a fancy screen to
dazzle your customers, just save some time, effort, and money! Do it
in text mode with the Console Compiler.
The PowerBASIC Console Compiler 6 is particularly valuable for conversion of DOS
programs. With the advent of 64-bit Vista and Win7, all support for
DOS code has been removed. You simply can't run a DOS program in 64-bit
Win7. That's where the Console Compiler shines! It's 95% compatible
with most versions of DOS Basic, so conversion is a snap. There isn't
another compiler on the market which is closer in syntax.
Of course, the Console Compiler is perfect for CGI code on your web server.
Whatever the task, it can take data from a web form, process as needed,
then deliver the results right to the browser of a distant end user.
Other than the screen and keyboard, the Console Compiler offers virtually
all the great features of our GUI compiler. Threads for multi-core
programming. Macros. Regular expressions. Register variables. TCP/UDP.
Thread-Local Storage. Objects. COM. A great IDE and debugger. It's all
So, what's the big difference?
Should I buy PowerBASIC For Windows? PowerBASIC Console Compiler? Both?
Really, the decision boils down to one thing...
THE USER INTERFACE
What the user sees and uses when he runs your program. The code which
handles the screen, the keyboard, and the mouse. PB/Win uses all the GUI
components of Windows to offer a "snazzy" appearance. PB/Console uses the
Windows Console to display your data and calculations directly; No fluff.
PB/Win means some extra work from you, the programmer, to manage your
resources. PB/Console can offer straightforward conversion of your existing
programs for DOS.
Each concept offers real advantages. Sometimes you want the best-of-the-best
appearance. Sometimes you just want instant results. Sometimes you need to
dazzle your audience. Sometimes you just want to convert DOS code.
If you have both compilers, all your bases are covered. When you consider
the low prices of PowerBASIC, it makes sense to consider the option.
Isn't it a small price to save many hours of programming time?
Classic Compilers with Value Pricing
Text-Mode or GUI programs
with true value pricing
Whether you're new to programming, or just conscious of your budget, the
Classic series of compilers may be a perfect fit. This is your best
opportunity to obtain a professional compiler at hobbyist pricing!
The Classic Compilers are actually an older version of our Premier
compilers. Just a couple of years ago, they were "best of breed"...
the finest compilers on the market. Today, you can buy them for pennies
on the dollar to gain a good foothold in PowerBASIC Programming.
Just like the Premier version, Classic PowerBASIC 9.0 for Windows creates
GUI programs (Graphical User Interface) with the Windows "Look'n'Feel".
You'll get Dialogs, Buttons, EditBoxes, Menus, and more. All the Pizzazz
of a great GUI display, but at real value pricing. This compiler was
originally priced at $199, and worth every penny. The price of
Classic PowerBASIC 9 for Windows is just $99!
On the other hand, there's much to say for a Text-Mode compiler. There's
no fluff, no animated puppets, just intense computing power. Classic
PowerBASIC Console Compiler 5 fits the bill perfectly. A few less features,
a bit less performance, that's to be expected. But check out the pricing!
This compiler was once priced at $169. The price of Classic Console
Compiler 5 is $89. A professional compiler at a price that's almost trivial!
All of that said, please don't misunderstand us. The Classic Compilers are
great. Particularly at these prices. Three or four years ago, they were
state of the art. Even today, they leave competitors swirling in their dust.
But they aren't the same as our premier versions, listed above. More than
90% upgrade to the latest premier compilers, so it's likely you will, too.
It may be best to make the move up right now. Then you'll have access to
all the latest features and time-saving shortcuts right from the start.
PB/DOS generates 16-bit programs that run
DOS operating system. That includes MS-DOS, PC-DOS,
DR-DOS, Caldera DOS, etc. All 32-bit versions of Windows,
even WinVista-32 and Win7-32, include a DOS emulator. So do some
other platforms like OS/2, Macintosh, Unix and Linux.
PB/DOS programs can be readily executed in all of these
DOS is an older operating system, with
from some vendors. In fact, many competing compilers
for DOS have been abandoned, but not PowerBASIC! Our
product is fully supported, with many improvements planned
for the future. It's 99% compatible with GW-Basic and
TurboBasic, and very similar to Microsoft's QBasic,
QuickBasic, and PDS. It offers a built-in assembler,
16-Megabyte virtual arrays, huge string space, extended
precision floats, and much more. PB/DOS offers
both text and graphical capabilites, and some features,
like PopUp programs, which are unique to the DOS platform. For
complete technical details, visit the PowerBASIC/DOS
Why choose PowerBASIC for DOS? Many
possible reasons... PowerBASIC/DOS
is our lowest cost compiler, and runs well on older,
less expensive computers. An outstanding choice for
students and those on a budget. Obviously, it's
required for those who must write or maintain code on
the DOS platform. That might be older programs, or even
new ones for the embedded single-board computers in
gas pumps, vending machines, even robots and toasters!
That said, before embarking on a DOS project, keep
in mind the limitations of the operating system itself: Less
Memory. Slower execution. Less availability
of new hardware, as many manufacturers no longer create
device drivers for DOS. As a general rule, most new
projects are likely best targeted towards 32-bit Windows
For questions which may not have been fully
please leave Feedback. We'll do our best to get you
a prompt response.