As with the UNIX build, the first step to preparing a Windows build is to unpack the source tarball. By default, Windows doesn't know what to do with a .tar.gz file. In fact, if you downloaded PHP using Internet Explorer, you probably noticed that it changed the name of the tarball file to php-5.1.0.tar.tar. This isn't IE craving a plate of fish sticks ordepending on who you aska bug, it's a "feature." Start by renaming the file back to php-5.1.0.tar.gz (if necessary). If you have a program installed that is capable of reading .tar.gz files, you'll notice the icon immediately change. You can now double-click on the file to open up the decompression program. If the icon doesn't change, or if nothing happens when you double-click the icon, it means that you have no tar/gzip compatible decompression program installed. Check your favorite search engine for WinZIP, WinRAR, or any other application that is suitable for extracting .tar.gz archives. Whatever decompression program you use, have it decompress php-5.1.0.tar.gz to the root development folder you created earlier. This section will assume you have extracted it to C:\PHPDEV\ which, because the zip file contains a folder structure, will result in the source tree residing in C:\PHPDEV\php-5.1.0. After it's unpacked, open up a build environment window by choosing Start, All Programs, Microsoft Platform SDK for Windows Server 2003 SP1, Open Build Environment Window, Windows 2000 Build Environment, Set Windows 2000 Build Environment (Debug). The specific path to this shortcut might be slightly different depending on the version of the Platform SDK you have installed and the target platform you will be building for (2000, XP, 2003). A simple command prompt window will open up stating the target build platform. This command prompt has most, but not all, necessary environment variables set up. You'll need to run one extra batch file in order to let the PHP build system know where Visual C++ Express is. If you accepted the default installation location this batch file will be located at C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio 8\VC\bin\vcvars32.bat. If you can't find vcvars32.bat, check the same directoryor its parentfor vcvarsall.bat. Just be sure to run it inside the same command prompt window you just opened. It will set additional environment variables that the build process will need. Now, change the directory to the location where you unpacked PHP C:\PHPDEV\php-5.1.0and run buildconf.bat. C:\Program Files\Microsoft Platform SDK> cd \PHPDEV\php-5.1.0 C:\PHPDEV\php-5.1.0> buildconf.bat If all is going well so far you'll see the following two lines of output: Rebuilding configure.js Now run 'cscript /nologo configure.js help' At this point, you can do as the message says and see what options are available. The enable-maintainer-zts option is not necessary here because the Win32 build automatically assumes that ZTS will be required by any SAPI. If you wanted to turn it off, you could issue disable-zts, but that's not the case here because you're building for a development environment anyway. In this example I've removed a few other extensions that aren't relevant to extension and embedding development for the sake of simplicity. If you'd like to rebuild PHP using additional extensions, you'll need to hunt down the libraries on which they depend. C:\php-5.1.0> cscript /nologo configure.js without-xml without-wddx \ without-simplexml without-dom without-libxml disable-zlib \ without-sqlite disable-odbc disable-cgi enable-cli \ enable-debug without-iconv Again, a stream of informative output will scroll by, followed by instructions to execute the final command: C:\php-5.1.0> nmake Finally, a working build of PHP compiled for the Win32 platform.