Writing Mac App In C++



This tutorial uses C++/CX. Microsoft has released C++/WinRT: an entirely standard modern C++17 language projection for Windows Runtime (WinRT) APIs. For more information on this language, please see C++/WinRT.

Unified Tags - Any tags you add via Write for iOS or Mac will be listed here. Tags are automatically synced with the iOS app over iCloud. Any tag you add via Write will be available in Finder (Mavericks only). The app makes coding much easier on your Mac than ever with a number of features it comes preloaded with. Syntax highlighting, Multiple Tabs, and Search and Replace are some of the salient features of the app. If you missed closing a bracket, that happens most of the time you are coding; it completes it automatically for you.

Jul 29, 2014  With Cocos2d-x (V3.2 at the time of writing) it is now possible to develop truly native cross-platform games in C. While the same code-base can be used across platforms, the development environment is necessarily different - usually Visual Studio on Windows for Windows Phone, XCode on Mac for i-Devices and Eclipse on almost anything for Android. SquidNotes is one of those writing apps that captures your real handwriting. It mimics an actual notebook or legal pad. You can use a compatible stylus or write with your finger. You can then resize your notes, add shapes and export to PDF and more.

With Microsoft Visual Studio, you can use C++/CX to develop an app that runs on Windows 10 with a UI that's defined in Extensible Application Markup Language (XAML).


This tutorial uses Visual Studio Community 2019. If you are using a different version of Visual Studio, it may look a little different for you.

Before you start

  • To complete this tutorial, you must use Visual Studio Community, or one of the non-Community versions of Visual Studio, on a computer that's running Windows 10. To download, see Get the tools.
  • We assume you have a basic understanding of C++/CX, XAML, and the concepts in the XAML overview.
  • We assume you're using the default window layout in Visual Studio. To reset to the default layout, on the menu bar, choose Window > Reset Window Layout.

Comparing C++ desktop apps to Windows apps

If you're coming from a background in Windows desktop programming in C++, you'll probably find that some aspects of writing apps for the UWP are familiar, but other aspects require some learning.

What's the same?

  • You can use the STL, the CRT (with some exceptions), and any other C++ library as long as the code only calls Windows functions that are accessible from the Windows Runtime environment.

  • If you're accustomed to visual designers, you can still use the designer built into Microsoft Visual Studio, or you can use the more full-featured Blend for Visual Studio. If you're accustomed to coding UI by hand, you can hand-code your XAML.

  • You're still creating apps that use Windows operating system types and your own custom types.

  • You're still using the Visual Studio debugger, profiler, and other development tools.

  • You're still creating apps that are compiled to native machine code by the Visual C++ compiler. UWP apps in C++/CX don't execute in a managed runtime environment.

What's new?

Writing Mac App In C++
  • The design principles for UWP apps and Universal Windows apps are very different from those for desktop apps. Window borders, labels, dialog boxes, and so on, are de-emphasized. Content is foremost. Great Universal Windows apps incorporate these principles from the very beginning of the planning stage.

  • You're using XAML to define the entire UI. The separation between UI and core program logic is much clearer in a Windows Universal app than in an MFC or Win32 app. Other people can work on the appearance of the UI in the XAML file while you're working on the behavior in the code file.

  • You're primarily programming against a new, easy-to-navigate, object-oriented API, the Windows Runtime, although on Windows devices Win32 is still available for some functionality.

  • You use C++/CX to consume and create Windows Runtime objects. C++/CX enables C++ exception handling, delegates, events, and automatic reference counting of dynamically created objects. When you use C++/CX, the details of the underlying COM and Windows architecture are hidden from your app code. For more information, see C++/CX Language Reference.

  • Your app is compiled into a package that also contains metadata about the types that your app contains, the resources that it uses, and the capabilities that it requires (file access, internet access, camera access, and so forth).

  • In the Microsoft Store and Windows Phone Store your app is verified as safe by a certification process and made discoverable to millions of potential customers.

Hello World Store app in C++/CX

Our first app is a 'Hello World' that demonstrates some basic features of interactivity, layout, and styles. We'll create an app from the Windows Universal app project template. If you've developed apps for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 before, you might remember that you had to have three projects in Visual Studio, one for the Windows app, one for the phone app, and another with shared code. The Windows 10 Universal Windows Platform (UWP) makes it possible to have just one project, which runs on all devices, including desktop and laptop computers running Windows 10, devices such as tablets, mobile phones, VR devices and so on.

We'll start with the basics:

  • How to create a Universal Windows project in Visual Studio.

  • How to understand the projects and files that are created.

  • How to understand the extensions in Visual C++ component extensions (C++/CX), and when to use them.

First, create a solution in Visual Studio

  1. In Visual Studio, on the menu bar, choose File > New > Project...

  2. In the Create a new project dialog box, select Blank App (Universal Windows - C++/CX). If you don't see this option, make sure you have the Universal Windows App Development Tools installed. See Get set up for more information.

  1. Choose Next, and then enter a name for the project. We'll name it HelloWorld.

  2. Choose the Create button.


If this is the first time you have used Visual Studio, you might see a Settings dialog asking you to enable Developer mode. Developer mode is a special setting that enables certain features, such as permission to run apps directly, rather than only from the Store. For more information, please read Enable your device for development. To continue with this guide, select Developer mode, click Yes, and close the dialog.

Your project files are created.

Before we go on, let's look at what's in the solution.

About the project files

Every .xaml file in a project folder has a corresponding .xaml.h file and .xaml.cpp file in the same folder and a .g file and a .g.hpp file in the Generated Files folder, which is on disk but not part of the project. You modify the XAML files to create UI elements and connect them to data sources (DataBinding). You modify the .h and .cpp files to add custom logic for event handlers. The auto-generated files represent the transformation of the XAML markup into C++/CX. Don't modify these files, but you can study them to better understand how the code-behind works. Basically, the generated file contains a partial class definition for a XAML root element; this class is the same class that you modify in the *.xaml.h and .cpp files. The generated files declare the XAML UI child elements as class members so that you can reference them in the code you write. At build time, the generated code and your code are merged into a complete class definition and then compiled.

Let's look first at the project files.

Mac App Free

  • App.xaml, App.xaml.h, App.xaml.cpp: Represent the Application object, which is an app's entry point. App.xaml contains no page-specific UI markup, but you can add UI styles and other elements that you want to be accessible from any page. The code-behind files contain handlers for the OnLaunched and OnSuspending events. Typically, you add custom code here to initialize your app when it starts and perform cleanup when it's suspended or terminated.
  • **MainPage.xaml, MainPage.xaml.h, MainPage.xaml.cpp:**Contain the XAML markup and code-behind for the default 'start' page in an app. It has no navigation support or built-in controls.
  • pch.h, pch.cpp: A precompiled header file and the file that includes it in your project. In pch.h, you can include any headers that do not change often and are included in other files in the solution.
  • Package.appxmanifest: An XML file that describes the device capabilities that your app requires, and the app version info and other metadata. To open this file in the Manifest Designer, just double-click it.
  • **HelloWorld_TemporaryKey.pfx:**A key that enables deployment of the app on this machine, from Visual Studio.

A first look at the code

If you examine the code in App.xaml.h, App.xaml.cpp in the shared project, you'll notice that it's mostly C++ code that looks familiar. However, some syntax elements might not be as familiar if you are new to Windows Runtime apps, or you've worked with C++/CLI. Here are the most common non-standard syntax elements you'll see in C++/CX:

Writing Mac App In C++

Ref classes

Almost all Windows Runtime classes, which includes all the types in the Windows API--XAML controls, the pages in your app, the App class itself, all device and network objects, all container types--are declared as a ref class. (A few Windows types are value class or value struct). A ref class is consumable from any language. In C++/CX, the lifetime of these types is governed by automatic reference counting (not garbage collection) so that you never explicitly delete these objects. You can create your own ref classes as well.

All Windows Runtime types must be declared within a namespace and unlike in ISO C++ the types themselves have an accessibility modifier. The public modifier makes the class visible to Windows Runtime components outside the namespace. The sealed keyword means the class cannot serve as a base class. Almost all ref classes are sealed; class inheritance is not broadly used because Javascript does not understand it.

ref new and ^ (hats)

You declare a variable of a ref class by using the ^ (hat) operator, and you instantiate the object with the ref new keyword. Thereafter you access the object's instance methods with the -> operator just like a C++ pointer. Static methods are accessed with the :: operator just as in ISO C++.

In the following code, we use the fully qualified name to instantiate an object, and use the -> operator to call an instance method.

Typically, in a .cpp file we would add a using namespace Windows::UI::Xaml::Media::Imaging directive and the auto keyword, so that the same code would look like this:


A ref class can have properties, which, just as in managed languages, are special member functions that appear as fields to consuming code.


Just as in managed languages, a delegate is a reference type that encapsulates a function with a specific signature. They are most often used with events and event handlers

Adding content to the app

Let's add some content to the app.

Step 1: Modify your start page

  1. In Solution Explorer, open MainPage.xaml.

  2. Create controls for the UI by adding the following XAML to the root Grid, immediately before its closing tag. It contains a StackPanel that has a TextBlock that asks the user's name, a TextBox element that accepts the user's name, a Button, and another TextBlock element.

  3. At this point, you have created a very basic Universal Windows app. To see what the UWP app looks like, press F5 to build, deploy, and run the app in debugging mode.

The default splash screen appears first. It has an image—AssetsSplashScreen.scale-100.png—and a background color that are specified in the app's manifest file. To learn how to customize the splash screen, see Adding a splash screen.

When the splash screen disappears, your app appears. It displays the main page of the App.

It doesn't do much—yet—but congratulations, you've built your first Universal Windows Platform app!

To stop debugging and close the app, return to Visual Studio and press Shift+F5.

For more information, see Run a Store app from Visual Studio.

In the app, you can type in the TextBox, but clicking the Button doesn't do anything. In later steps, you create an event handler for the button's Click event, which displays a personalized greeting.

Step 2: Create an event handler

  1. In MainPage.xaml, in either XAML or design view, select the 'Say Hello' Button in the StackPanel you added earlier.

  2. Open the Properties Window by pressing F4, and then choose the Events button ().

  3. Find the Click event. In its text box, type the name of the function that handles the Click event. For this example, type 'Button_Click'.

  4. Press Enter. The event handler method is created in MainPage.xaml.cpp and opened so that you can add the code that's executed when the event occurs.

At the same time, in MainPage.xaml, the XAML for the Button is updated to declare the Click event handler, like this:

You could also have simply added this to the xaml code manually, which can be helpful if the designer doesn't load. If you enter this manually, type 'Click' and then let IntelliSense pop up the option to add a new event handler. That way, Visual Studio creates the necessary method declaration and stub.

The designer fails to load if an unhandled exception occurs during rendering. Rendering in the designer involves running a design-time version of the page. It can be helpful to disable running user code. You can do this by changing the setting in the Tools, Options dialog box. Under XAML Designer, uncheck Run project code in XAML designer (if supported).

  1. In MainPage.xaml.cpp, add the following code to the Button_Click event handler that you just created. This code retrieves the user's name from the nameInputTextBox control and uses it to create a greeting. The greetingOutputTextBlock displays the result.
  1. Set the project as the startup, and then press F5 to build and run the app. When you type a name in the text box and click the button, the app displays a personalized greeting.

Step 3: Style the start page

Choosing a theme

It's easy to customize the look and feel of your app. By default, your app uses resources that have a light style. The system resources also include a light theme. Let's try it out and see what it looks like.

To switch to the dark theme

  1. Open App.xaml.
  2. In the opening Application tag, edit the RequestedTheme property and set its value to Dark:
  1. Press F5 to build and run it. Notice that it uses the dark theme.

Which theme should you use? Whichever one you want. Here's our take: for apps that mostly display images or video, we recommend the dark theme; for apps that contain a lot of text, we recommend the light theme. If you're using a custom color scheme, use the theme that goes best with your app's look and feel. In the rest of this tutorial, we use the Light theme in screenshots.

Note The theme is applied when the app is started and can't be changed while the app is running.

Using system styles

Right now, in the Windows app the text is very small and difficult to read. Let's fix that by applying a system style.

To change the style of an element

  1. In the Windows project, open MainPage.xaml.

  2. In either XAML or design view, select the 'What's your name?'TextBlock that you added earlier.

  3. In the Properties window (F4), choose the Properties button () in the upper right.

  4. Expand the Text group and set the font size to 18 px.

  5. Expand the Miscellaneous group and find the Style property.

  6. Click the property marker (the green box to the right of the Style property), and then, on the menu, choose System Resource > BaseTextBlockStyle.

    BaseTextBlockStyle is a resource that's defined in the ResourceDictionary in Program FilesWindows Kits10Includewinrtxamldesigngeneric.xaml.

    On the XAML design surface, the appearance of the text changes. In the XAML editor, the XAML for the TextBlock is updated:

  1. Repeat the process to set the font size and assign the BaseTextBlockStyle to the greetingOutputTextBlock element.

    Tip Although there's no text in this TextBlock, when you move the pointer over the XAML design surface, a blue outline shows where it is so that you can select it.

    Your XAML now looks like this:

  1. Press F5 to build and run the app. It now looks like this:

Step 4: Adapt the UI to different window sizes

Now we'll make the UI adapt to different screen sizes so it looks good on mobile devices. To do this, you add a VisualStateManager and set properties that are applied for different visual states.

To adjust the UI layout

  1. In the XAML editor, add this block of XAML after the opening tag of the root Grid element.
  1. Debug the app on the local machine. Notice that the UI looks the same as before unless the window gets narrower than 641 device-independent pixels (DIPs).
  2. Debug the app on the mobile device emulator. Notice that the UI uses the properties you defined in the narrowState and appears correctly on the small screen.

If you've used a VisualStateManager in previous versions of XAML, you might notice that the XAML here uses a simplified syntax.

The VisualState named wideState has an AdaptiveTrigger with its MinWindowWidth property set to 641. This means that the state is to be applied only when the window width is not less than the minimum of 641 DIPs. You don't define any Setter objects for this state, so it uses the layout properties you defined in the XAML for the page content.

The second VisualState, narrowState, has an AdaptiveTrigger with its MinWindowWidth property set to 0. This state is applied when the window width is greater than 0, but less than 641 DIPs. (At 641 DIPs, the wideState is applied.) In this state, you do define some Setter objects to change the layout properties of controls in the UI:

  • You reduce the left margin of the contentPanel element from 120 to 20.
  • You change the Orientation of the inputPanel element from Horizontal to Vertical.
  • You add a top margin of 4 DIPs to the inputButton element.


Congratulations, you've completed the first tutorial! It taught how to add content to Windows Universal apps, how to add interactivity to them, and how to change their appearance.

Next steps

If you have a Windows Universal app project that targets Windows 8.1 and/or Windows Phone 8.1, you can port it to Windows 10. There is no automatic process for this, but you can do it manually. Start with a new Windows Universal project to get the latest project system structure and manifest files, copy your code files into the project's directory structure, add the items to your project, and rewrite your XAML using the VisualStateManager according to the guidance in this topic. For more information, see Porting a Windows Runtime 8 project to a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) project and Porting to the Universal Windows Platform (C++).

If you have existing C++ code that you want to integrate with a UWP app, such as to create a new UWP UI for an existing application, see How to: Use existing C++ code in a Universal Windows project.

How can you run Xcode on Windows and develop iOS apps with a Windows PC? The short answer is: you can’t! You’ve got a few alternatives to get around that, however. In this tutorial, we’ll discuss how you can install Xcode on Windows to build iOS apps.

Here’s what we’ll get into:

  • Rent a Mac in the cloud (starting at $20/mo)
  • Run and compile Swift directly on Windows/Linux
  • Learning to code with a Swift Sandbox
  • Build your own “Hackintosh” by installing macOS on a PC
  • Run Xcode on Windows by installing macOS on a virtual machine
  • Develop iOS apps on Windows with cross-platform tools
  • Get your hands on a second-hand Mac (starting at $300)

Let’s get to it!

Xcode for Windows: What & Why

Xcode is the macOS-only software program, called an IDE, that you use to design, develop and publish iOS apps. The Xcode IDE includes Swift, a code editor, Interface Builder, a debugger, documentation, version control, tools to publish your app in the App Store, and much more.

Xcode contains everything you need to build iOS apps, and it only runs on macOS!

That’s when the problems start. You want to make an iOS app with your Windows PC, but you can’t buy a PC or laptop with macOS pre-installed on it. Unlike Windows, Apple doesn’t license its operating system to other computer manufacturers. You can only use macOS on a Mac.

In fact, when you obtain a license to use macOS, which happens when you purchase a Mac computer, you have to agree to only run the operating system on Apple hardware. This effectively limits you to only develop apps on a Mac.

“It’s more fun to be a pirate than to join the navy.”
— Steve Jobs (1983)

But… it’s more fun to be a pirate, than to join the navy, right? Let’s discuss a few alternatives that’ll let you run Xcode on Windows and develop iOS apps on a Windows PC!

Rent a Mac in the Cloud

An even easier way to get your hands on macOS, albeit more expensive, is to rent a Mac “in the Cloud”. You can work with Xcode on Windows with this approach, because you’re essentially connected to a Mac that’s elsewhere.

Here’s how that works:

  • Someone connects a bunch of Mac’s to the internet
  • You sign in on one of those Macs via a Remote Desktop Connection (RDP)
  • Done! You can use this Mac from Windows/Linux and build iOS apps

Services like MacinCloud and MacStadium offer affordable rent-a-Mac products, usually paid on a monthly basis. Prices typically start at $20/month and you can choose from several hardware options, including Mac Mini and Mac Pro.

Starting atType
MacinCloud$20/monthDedicated, Virtual, Server
MacStadium$79/monthDedicated, Enterprise
virtualmacosx.com$9.75/monthShared (timesharing)
Mac Cloud$49/monthVirtual
FlowPremiumDedicated, Enterprise
HostMyApple$25/monthVirtual, Dedicated

You connect to those cloud-based Macs via a Remote Desktop Connection (RDP). Windows includes a stock Remote Desktop Client you can use, and so do most Linux operating systems. Once you’re logged on, you can launch Xcode, and start building your iOS app. That way you’re effectively running Xcode on your Windows PC!

Cloud-based Macs usually come in 3 flavours:

  • A dedicated Mac, which means you get access to a physical Mac located in a data center, as if you bought a Mac in the Apple Store and put it on your desk.
  • A virtual Mac, which means you get access to a virtual Mac in a data center, much like the VirtualBox solution mentioned earlier. Your Mac won’t run on Apple hardware, but it will run macOS.
  • A Mac Build Server, which is a specialized kind of Mac that can be used to compile iOS apps. You’ll create those apps on your Mac, and then instruct the Build Server to compile the app for you.

A dedicated Mac is the most convenient, and the most powerful option. A virtual Mac is OK too, but it typically does not perform as well as a physical Mac computer.

Running Xcode via a Mac in the cloud has a drawback: you can’t easily connect your iPhone to Xcode via USB! With Xcode on your local Mac you can run and debug your app on your own iPhone, via the USB/Lightning cable. This obviously won’t work when your Mac is in the cloud…

Don’t worry! There are plenty of solutions for that:

  • A simple approach is to run your app on iPhone Simulator, right from within Xcode. You can launch iPhone Simulator in Xcode, and debug your app with it. This is perfect for the development phase of your project.
  • An alternative solution are tools like Flexihub, NoMachine and USB Network Gate. They only work with dedicated Mac hardware, and you need to have a dedicated IP address.
  • Install your iOS app on your iPhone via TestFlight, and debug it with a tool like Bugsnag. You can monitor and debug live crashes in your app.

An interesting use case for renting a Mac in the cloud comes from the latest developments in Apple’s hardware. Many designers, developers and desktop-publishers have voiced their concerns over Apple hardware lagging behind, offering low-spec computers for a fairly high price.

If you don’t want to take your $3.000 MacBook Pro with you in a coffee shop, or on your next trip to Thailand, why not purchase a low-end Windows or Linux laptop, and connect to your Mac in the cloud? You can either host it at home yourself, co-locate it in a data center, or rent a dedicated cloud-based Mac.

Do you want to learn how to code iOS apps, but don’t want to invest money in a Mac? Rent a Mac in the cloud for the duration of the iOS development course you’re taking! It’s a great way to bootstrap learning iOS development, and you can always buy your own Mac later.

Learn how to code iOS apps

Get started with Xcode and Swift

Ready to get started with iOS development? Learn how to code iOS apps with Xcode and Swift with our immersive iOS development course. Works both on Mac and PC!

Install macOS on Your Windows PC via VirtualBox

The easiest way to run Xcode on Windows is by using a virtual machine (VM).

A virtual machine will create an environment an operating system can run in, as if it’s running on the hardware itself, except it’s running “on top” of your actual hardware and operating system. You can then run Xcode normally, because it essentially runs on macOS on Windows!

This is called virtualization, and it allows you to run Windows on Linux, macOS on Windows, and even Windows on macOS. One of the benefits of virtualization is to run multiple OS side-by-side, which is useful for cross-platform development.

You need 2 things to run macOS on Windows in a VM:

  1. A copy of macOS, as an installer or virtual disk image file
  2. A virtual machine tool, like VirtualBox (free) or VMware (paid)

You can obtain a copy of macOS by downloading it from the App Store or by borrowing it from a friend. A great approach is to search for virtual disk images that have macOS pre-installed. You can also find installers from various sources on the internet, or upgrade a pre-existing image to a newer (beta) version of macOS.

Here’s what you do next:

  1. Install VirtualBox or VMware
  2. Mount the macOS installer or disk image
  3. Start the VM to launch macOS
  4. Launch Xcode!

You can read exactly how to in this tutorial. The recommended system specs are: 4-8 GB of RAM, an Intel i5/i7 compatible CPU, and at least 10 GB of free disk space.

Note: Using macOS on non-Apple hardware is against Apple’s End User License Agreement (EULA). (Fun fact: the same EULA prohibits the use of macOS to manufacture missiles or nuclear weapons…)

Build Your Own “Hackintosh” to Run Xcode

The most obvious choice to run Xcode on a Windows PC is perhaps to literally install macOS on a Windows PC…

“One platform to rule them all” has always been Apple’s take on the world. The Mac, App Store, iOS and Apple Music are all closed systems. Apple enthusiasts have always enjoyed the integrated Apple experience.

On the other hand, the rest of the world builds computers using an “open systems architecture”, in which you can effectively mix-and-match computer components and architectures to create your preferred computing machine.

Building $10.000 gaming PCs, mid-level desktops, blazing-fast ultrabooks, and $250 laptops is only possible because of open hardware. Because of Apple’s closed systems, you’re always bound by the hardware options they give you.

But… what if you want to run macOS on your custom built PC? Apple won’t let you, and your computer manufacturer can’t install macOS for you, even if they wanted to. Because macOS shall only run on Apple hardware!

Enter the “Hackintosh”.

A Hackintosh is a PC that runs macOS. Just like you can install macOS in a virtual machine, or in the cloud, you can install macOS as the bootable operating system on your PC. Switch it on, and macOS loads.

You can also create a dual-boot, i.e. a system that both hosts Windows and macOS. When you boot your PC, you can select the operating system that starts.

Building a Hackintosh can be a tricky exercise, especially if you’re not familiar with PC hardware and creating custom installations. Not all hardware is compatible with macOS. Moreover, Apple has of course created safe-guards against booting macOS on unsupported hardware.

Nevertheless, it’s a good option for running macOS on your custom hardware, and booting macOS on your Windows PC. Check out hackintosh.com for more information, and step-by-step guides.

The name “Hackintosh” comes from the old brand-name of Apple computers: Macintosh, combined with “hack”. Again, it’s against Apple’s EULA – but you wanted to be a pirate, right?

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The days of the Hackintosh are almost over, depending on who you ask. Apple’s newer hardware includes a T2 chip now. Hardware-specific chips are notoriously hard to mimic in non-Apple hardware, which essentially means that, in the future, you may not be able to install or update macOS on a computer that doesn’t have that T2 chip.

Swift for Windows & Linux

Developers who want to learn Swift have 2 alternative approaches to code Swift, next to working with Xcode on Windows. Swift is open source, which means you can essentially run it on any system.

Currently, you can use:

  1. Swift 5 on Ubuntu Linux 16.04 and 18.04 via the official images
  2. Swift 4.1 on Windows 10 via the unofficial swiftforwindows.github.io

Here’s how you can run Swift code on Linux:

  1. Download the latest release from swift.org/download
  2. Unzip the .zip in a convenient location
  3. Locate the swift executable in the usr/bin directory
  4. Compile and run a Swift file with swift [filename.swift]

You can also copy the Swift executables to your $PATH, or add Swift’s folder to $PATH, to use the swift command anywhere on your system.

Here’s how you can run Swift code on Windows:

  1. Download the latest release of Swift for Windows from this page
  2. Start the program and point it to your .swift file
  3. Click Run in the program

It appears the Swift for Windows project hasn’t been updated in a while. It’s latest supported version is Swift 4.1., which doesn’t differ that much from Swift 5 in terms of beginner syntax and functionality. Your mileage may vary, though!

You can even run and compile Swift on the $35 Raspberry Pi single-board computer! You can download Swift 5, which has been ported to the ARM CPU architecture, right here. Installing is as easy as pointing your RPi to the swift-arm repo, then do sudo apt-get install swift5, and then run the Swift CLI with swift [filename.swift]. Neat!

Develop iOS Apps on Windows With Cross-Platform Tools

Cross-platform tools are awesome: you code your app once, and export it to iOS and Android. That could potentially cut your app development time and cost in half. Several cross-platform tools allow you to develop iOS apps on a Windows PC, or allow you to compile the app if there’s a Mac in your local network.

Well, not so fast…

The cross-platform tool ecosystem is very large. On the one side you have complete Integrated Development Environments (IDEs) like Xamarin, that allow you to build cross-platform apps with C#.

The middle ground is covered by tools like PhoneGap, Cordova, Ionic and Appcelerator, that let you build native apps with HTML5 components. The far end includes smaller platforms like React Native that allow you to write native apps with a JavaScript wrapper.

The one thing that stands out for all cross-platform tools is this: they’re not beginner friendly! It’s much easier to get access to a Mac, learn Swift, and build a simple app, than it is to get started with Xamarin.

Most of the cross-platform tools require you to have a basic understanding of programming, compilation options, and the iOS and Android ecosystems. That’s something you don’t really have as a beginner developer!

Having said that, let’s look at a couple of options:

  • If you’re familiar with Windows-based development tools and IDEs, and if you already know how to code, it’s worthwhile to check out Xamarin. With Xamarin you code apps in C#, for multiple platforms, using the Mono and MonoTouch frameworks.
  • If you’re familiar with web-based development, check out PhoneGap or Ionic. You’ll feel right at home with HTML 5, CSS and JavaScript. Don’t forget: a native app works different than a website…
  • If you’re familiar with JavaScript, or if you’d rather learn to code JavaScript than Swift, check out React Native. With React Native you can code native apps for iOS and Android using a “wrapper”.

Choose deliberately for a cross-platform tool because it fits your project, not because you think a native platform language is bad. The fact that one option isn’t right, doesn’t immediately make another option better!

If you don’t want to join the proprietary closed Apple universe, don’t forget that many cross-platform tools are operated by equally monopolistic companies like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Adobe and Amazon.

An often heard argument against cross-platform tools is that they offer limited access to and support for smartphone hardware, and are less “snappy” than their native counterparts. Also, any cross-platform tool will require you to write platform-specific code at one point, especially if you want to code custom features.

Note: You’ll still need to compile your app with Xcode, even if you use cross-platform tools. Most cross-platform tools rely on the command-line tools that are shipped with Xcode, as part of macOS. You’ll also need Xcode to publish your app in the App Store.

Adobe audition software for mac download. Stick another audio. Improvement in the Multitrack section that focuses on capturing audio layers or punch-ins and storing Z-order for you to keep short sounds away from very long sounds.

Get a Second-Hand Mac

You gotta ask yourself: Why not get a Mac? Perhaps the simplest option to build iOS apps with Xcode, in this tutorial, is purchasing a Mac for iOS development.

If you don’t want to tinker with cross-platform tools, or rent-a-Mac in the cloud, and just want to get started with iOS development: get a Mac.

A simple search on Ebay shows you 1-3 year old second-hand Mac Mini’s for as little as $250. Any newer, decent second-hand Mac Mini will set you back around $450. Don’t forget that you can get a brand new Mac Mini for around $800.

A better question is perhaps: is a Mac Mini from 2015 fast enough to build apps with? I’ve built 50+ apps for iOS, Android and the web since 2009, and a fair share of those were built on a 1.2 Ghz 8GB MacBook Air from 2013. I started LearnAppMaking.com with that same trusty ol’ MacBook, and I’ve coded several successful production apps with it until 2018.

It’s traveled with me all over the world, from the beaches of Thailand, to airline lounges, to coffee shops, to coding apps with my knees behind my ears, cramped in economy class at 20.000 feet up in the air.

I don’t want to go all nostalgic on you, but I learned to code on a 100 Mhz i486 PC, when lines still started with a number. That’s a lot faster PC than the one that put man on the moon, at 46 Khz.

Writing Mac App In C 1

So, to say that a Mac Mini, or your new 2015 MacBook Pro, is fast enough, is an understatement…

If you buy a second hand Mac, make sure that it supports the latest version of macOS. Xcode and iOS versions are connected to macOS versions, so you want to buy a Mac that supports at least the current ones. You can find the max. latest version of Xcode that your Mac can run, by cross-referencing the min macOS to run in this wiki with Hardware compatibility in this wiki.

Code Swift with a Swift Sandbox

Do you really need Xcode to code apps? Ultimately, yes. But you can definitely learn Swift and code Swift without a Mac or Xcode!

Top Mac App

Here, check this out:

func fibonacci(_ i: Int) -> Int {
if i <= 2 {
return 1
} else {
return fibonacci(i - 1) + fibonacci(i - 2)
let numbers = Array(1..10).map { fibonacci($0) }

The above code runs in a Swift sandbox. The sandbox sends the Swift code to a webserver, which compiles it and returns the result. It’s the perfect tool to quickly play with some Swift code in your browser!

Swift is an open-source language, and that means you can effectively run it on any hardware.

Need more space for your Swift code? Check out the bigger Swift Sandbox right here!

Learn how to code iOS apps

Get started with Xcode and Swift

Ready to get started with iOS development? Learn how to code iOS apps with Xcode and Swift with our immersive iOS development course. Works both on Mac and PC!

Writing Mac App In C Download

Further Reading

Best Mac App

You can’t build iOS apps without Xcode, and you need macOS to run Xcode, and a Mac to use macOS. There’s no getting around it, except for these alternatives to run Xcode on Windows:

  • Rent a Mac in the cloud (starting at $20/mo)
  • Run Xcode on Windows by installing macOS on a virtual machine
  • Build your own “Hackintosh” by installing macOS on a PC
  • Develop iOS apps on Windows with cross-platform tools
  • Get your hands on a second-hand Mac (starting at $300)
  • Learning to code with a Swift Sandbox
  • Run and compile Swift directly on Windows/Linux

Writing Mac App In C Free

Awesome. I want to wish you best of luck with building your iOS app on Windows! Here are a few projects and tutorials to consider: