Developing Ruby and Rails in Windows? Or Linux VM
I’ve been doing front end web work for a while. I maintain several company websites and etc, mostly on Joomla. I’m getting bored with it and I really want to expand in to development. I have a few web app ideas for the company and some personal stuff I’d like to do.
Ive decided I want to learn Ruby and Rails and have been pursuing it for about a month now. I read a lot of tutorials and work through stuff I find online. I’m also diving in to git and trying to use it more.
I feel like Windows is not going to be conducive to me getting efficient at this. I know that you can, and some do, develop in Windows but I’m wondering if its time for me to move past it.
I picked Ruby to be my first real programming language because of the simplicity I read about. For both Ruby and RoR and I want to be able to learn a language that will let me build apps and web apps that are cross platform.
On to the problem, I can’t immerse myself completely in a linux world. I have to have photoshop and indesign for part of my job. So I’m thinking maybe I should just do a live usb key install and take it back and forth between work and home. Is that a better solution than dual booting for what I want to do? I also realize that a mac would give me the best of both worlds, but I am budget constrained and I can’t make that leap yet.
Also, is there a good place to hang out to learn more? I have paid codeschool and tutsplus accounts. Should I be back on IRC? What do you think? I’m looking for guidance more than anything I guess. I feel kind of lost on where to go how to not waste time and start developing real skills. Thanks.
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You should also checkout the vagrant project which creates headless (non-gui) VMs and makes it easier to work with your files, etc in Windows while the code actually gets run on the Vagrant VM. Also, since its headless, the graphical UI isn’t eating up resources and has less impact on your host machine.
Check out these resources:
*Also if you’re learning Rails, you MUST checkout Railscasts http://railscasts.com/
The last thing I knew about this is that:
In Linux you can use RVM which handles pretty well everything about your Ruby environment. In Windows I tried pik, but it does not have support to install newer Rubies.
Also, Linux console is much friendlier than Windows one, regarding appearance and functionality. I have explored console2 for Windows, but it did not feel so comfortable that time.
In Linux you have plugins like oh-my-zsh which allows you to speed up your development. But maybe there are kind of this plugin for Windows.
Other than those, I don’t know why you should choose Linux VM.
I’ve developed a Rails app under Windows, and it turned out to be a huge mistake. Near the end of the development, I had to make my webapp multithreaded. The default Rails server does not allow multithreading, and all the alternative servers are either Linux-only, or I couldn’t get them to work.
I also considered using JRuby(because Java threads), but by then my app was too big to convert to JRuby(there are some syntax differences that I couldn’t track, and I relayed on some gems that don’t work on JRuby). However, if you go for JRuby from the beginning, you might be able to pull it off.