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Is integration with Visual Studio 2015 planned?

 
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spainchaud



Joined: 15 Sep 2016
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2016 9:57 pm    Post subject: Is integration with Visual Studio 2015 planned? Reply with quote

I just downloaded FTN95 personal so that I could test out the compatibility with Xamarin mobile development, but FTN95 does not integrate with VS2015.

I have a large amount of Fortran code which I would like to use with numerical modeling on the iPad. I suspect that any .NET language can be used to create a portable class library that can be run on iOS and Android mobile devices. This would require working with the Xamarin integration that comes free with VS2015.

Right now I am in the process of porting a large C/Fortran electromagnetic modeling code to c# in preparation for creating a mobile app. This is very tedious and requires extensive testing and debugging in order to port code that has already been extensively tested. I would rather just reuse the Fortran. I think the key to making that work is FTN95 integration into VS2015. When can that integration be expected.

Although Xamarin only natively supports c#, there is documentation on their website showing how to use Visual Basic libraries for mobile development. I believe something similar could be done with FTN95.
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silverfrost
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Joined: 29 Nov 2006
Posts: 137
Location: Manchester

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2016 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

FTN95 will not produce .NET code that will run on Android or iOS. It is strictly 32-bit x86 .NET.
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LitusSaxonicum



Joined: 23 Aug 2005
Posts: 1644
Location: Yateley, Hants, UK

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2016 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On the grounds that the whole point of .NET is to create a platform in which one could program for a range of operating systems, I always thought that FTN95's support for it was a rather pointless distraction. Either that, or Windows-only support through .NET was just a first step. After the Silverfrost reply, my charitable alternative is not sustainable, and I have to revert to my original belief.

My views, such as they are, are tinged with the fact that I cannot make head nor tail of the instructions on how to use Visual Studio, much less how to work with FTN95 in it, and Visual Clearwin+ doesn't seem to me to be visual at all! So when someone comes up with a query on the forum relating to .NET, my strongest emotion is envy at the brain power needed to even make a start, tinged with surprise that such a genius could ever have any programming problem at all ...

So .NET seems to be like one of those ghastly subtropical hellhole countries full of corruption, disease and violence: one knows that it is there, but one has no intention of ever visiting it. Should one wander into it by accident, one escapes as quickly as possible.
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PaulLaidler
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Joined: 21 Feb 2005
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Location: Salford, UK

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2016 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not able to comment on the history of FTN95 .NET. However, the current lack of portability is determined by the extent to which the Win32 DLL salflibc.dll is accessed by FTN95 .NET.

I am confident that Visual ClearWin for .NET is indeed "visual". It means that you can create dialogs in a visual way using the Visual Studio .NET dialog editor. This is an editor that allows you to drag various controls on to a window and then move them about and resize them.
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LitusSaxonicum



Joined: 23 Aug 2005
Posts: 1644
Location: Yateley, Hants, UK

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2016 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Paul,

If I'd ever got as far as that (VS .NET dialog editor), you may be right. I thought that the approach was incomprehensible in Visual Basic (years ago) and can't imagine that I got any smarter with the passage of 2 decades and declining mental acuity with age. I'm also someone who tries to read the documentation, and unfortunately, the reading age for the bit about Visual Clearwin is pitched at a level higher than mine ...

While I completely understand that FTN95 for .NET depends on salflibc.dll, that includes Clearwin, which to quote from you some years ago is a wrapper for Windows functionality. In combination, this makes the whole business of FTN95 for .NET miss the point of .NET rather, which is the point I was making, tongue in cheek - although that may have been missed due to an absence of emoticons.

Eddie
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spainchaud



Joined: 15 Sep 2016
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2016 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is unfortunate. I had assumed a .NET language would compile to an intermediate language. I will go back to porting the Fortran to c#.
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John-Silver



Joined: 30 Jul 2013
Posts: 517

PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

my first reaction on reading this post was no way is it possible, since the machne arcitecture is fundamentally different.
Just like in the old days with ėtrying to run an executable compiled under Unix on a PC, or vise-versa for that matter.

Searching I came across a question and discussion on the Intel website which confirmed this, interspersed with some humour such as:

Quote:
That would be a Smartphone running the Android OS. Funnily I can't get my ifort apps to run on my Siemens Dishwasher... Smile


to which some wag, a user calling hmself mecej4 Wink replied ....
Quote:
I had equally bad luck trying to run Solaris on my friend's Casio solar wristwatch. What we both need is a properly provisioned virtual appliance!


So, compiling on ftn95 on a Win machine, even in C, would most likely fail.

However, assuming the marvels of FTN95 GUI creation are not needed, maybe the Fortran number crunching parts could still be compiled on Fortran on the device itself ?

I came across a discussion about this too, which gives instructions about how thėo get GNu fortran running on an android here ....
http://specificimpulses.blogspot.it/2011/01/my-android-speaks-fortran-yours-can-too.html

but note the quthor screwed up 1st time around (don't we all) and then re.did things here ....
http://specificimpulses.blogspot.it/2012/08/something-borrowed-android-fortran.html

I recommenrd everyone to read both, if not for the technical content then for the dry humour of a practical programmer, which ar ewhat most of us on here are. They gave me a chuckle or three anyway when browing through.

Note to Paul - port the ftn95 compiler to Android, Apple et al and you'll make an absolute fortune imo
[/quote]


Last edited by John-Silver on Wed Sep 28, 2016 3:06 pm; edited 1 time in total
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spainchaud



Joined: 15 Sep 2016
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2016 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that as long as the Fortran compiles to CLR and only relies on the .NET libraries, it can be used by Xamarin in Visual Studio to make native iOS and Android apps.
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John-Silver



Joined: 30 Jul 2013
Posts: 517

PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2016 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

*** The below is written as an 'amateur' in all aspects of Fortran really,
*** let alone .NET, but here are some observations based on my
*** digging around becasue I was interested to learn a bit more
*** about .NET
***

Spainchaud (yes it is, but a frenchman in Sevilla maybe ? Wink ) ,

You are right, and it does support CLR I believe .

There'ės a whole raft of documentation for .NET

For Command Line, start here and it's clear the /CLR compile option must mean this
http://silverfrost.com/ftn95-help/options/compiler_options_command_line.aspx

then the rest of the documentation is here:-
http://silverfrost.com/ftn95-help/netprog/net_overview.aspx

I'm new to this .NET mularkey but a good start ės to read the first item in the first 2 'block's of help topics in the page linked above, namely:-

.NET Programming
http://silverfrost.com/ftn95-help/netprog/introduction.aspx

Fortran in an Object-Oriented environment
http://silverfrost.com/ftn95-help/netprog/fortraninanooenv.aspx


From what I've read as a beginner, there and by googling, whatever language you use it has to be 'standard compliant', so the complexity/feasability/complexity of converting the original code FOR NON-WINDOWS platforms, depends on what 'non-standard' features are in the code.
In the case of FTN95 I'm guessing that includes CLEARWIN+ (the GUI generation), and any non-standard INTRINSICS and maybe other featurs. Other Fortran Compilers also have non-standard functionality.
I think that's because, for example, the FTN95 DLL's have to be included in the programme build, and of course an android or ioS wouldn't understand them because they're compiled for Windows x32.

.NET has been discussed prevously on this forum but in the context of using it on Windows (primarily for multi-threading') and in that context there's no problem to use whatever program written in FTN95 because it's Windows (providing it's x32 ! - see there's always a catch - se earlier Silverfrost comment on thread)
You can write of course for a Windows tablet (only guaranteed to work if its x32 I guess - do they do x64 tablets, I have no idea ?) and it would equally understand whatever program , but other OS devices won't.

As for the Visual Studio, while 2015 is not supported the 2013 Community Edition IS (that was confirmed by someone previously on a post, even though it's not in the FTN95 documentation, so why not give that a try and see if it is compatibl with that other code you're using (he dėsaid being too lazy to open another window and re-load the post to check it's name (begins with an 'X' though) Wink )

Good Luck and let us know WHEN (not if) you get it working !

(P.S. - although not wanting to hype 'the competition', Lahey Fortran appears to be 'the pioneer/leader' in implementing .NET for Fortran and there might be many more possibilities there, but eh, it doesn't have no Clearwin+ Smile You might want to investigate over there too because whatever solution you find best I'm guessing you'll have problems becasue the code you have will have a lot of non-standard stuff spread throughout it)


Last edited by John-Silver on Fri Sep 30, 2016 11:28 am; edited 2 times in total
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John-Silver



Joined: 30 Jul 2013
Posts: 517

PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2016 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooops, I nearly forgot this ..... an old (2002) but encourageing articletelling of a success story in porting a program to .NET in the early days on FTN95 .NET developement - graphics included (reading the article that appears to be a complication in .NET but I know not why)

(Dan - look away now !!! LOL)

Porting SIMPLEPLOT graphics library to .NET using Fortran for .NET from Salford Software
http://silverfrost.com/21/ftn95/scientific_graphics_for_net_-_a_case_study.aspx
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spainchaud



Joined: 15 Sep 2016
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I looked at Lahey Fortran for .NET, since it pops up in a Google search. From the search results you get a link to a page that describes their .NET Fortran. However, when I go directly to the Lahey home page, I can find no .NET products. I went to the support page, but asking a question requires a registered serial number. They don't seem to have any forums. There was no customer service number to call. I was not impressed.

I suspect the Lahey .NET Fortran is discontinued, or well hidden.

BYW the key to using C# on iOS and Android is the integration of the Xamarin product into Visual Studio 2015. Which is why I can't use VS2013. I participated in a Xamarin webinar and asked if a .NET Fortran could be used as a portable library. They though it could work, if the Fortran compiled to the CLR and only used the .NET libraries.
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