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E.4 Windows installation instructions

For the impatient:

  • If you run Windows NT/2000, make sure you are logged in with the Administrator rights.
  • If you have Cygwin or XEmacs installed, please read the information below.
  • Execute the self-extracting installation archive and carefully follow the instructions given there. Setup will analyze your system, create the corresponding configuration and give you further tips on the installation process.
  • In case of troubles, see the installed file /etc/INSTALL or visit Singular Forum at

Installation preliminaries

To run SINGULAR on MS Windows requires that the Cygwin DLL (dynamically linked library) version 1.1.8 or higher is installed on your system (see for details about Cygwin). We install and configure Cygwin version 1.1.8 automatically, if the BasicCygwin component is selected.

To run ESINGULAR (i.e. SINGULAR within its Emacs interface) on MS Windows requires furthermore that the XEmacs editor is installed on your system.

Therefore, the SINGULAR installation is divided into the following components:

Program Files:
Contains the SINGULAR Program, Documentation And Example Files.
All files of this component are installed under the directory /usr/local/Singular/3-0-0
Contains the Cygwin DLL and basic tools/programs (like bash or info) of the Cygwin environment.
The Cygwin DLL and programs are installed in the directory /bin. Miscellaneous documentation and configuration files are installed into the directory /etc.
Contains the Cygwin port of the XEmacs editor (see for more about XEmacs) version 21.1.12.
All files of this component are installed under the directory /usr/local.
Contains The ESINGULAR, the most comfortable Singular interface. Requires XEmacs.
Help Files:
Contains Singular Manual, converted to Windows help format (.hlp). We recommend to install it, because it is small and is set by default in all the Singular executables.
Contains "native" Singular Manual. It's not included by default, because it is much bigger than WinHelp, though it has better formatting of mathematical formulae.

Downloading preliminaries

To install SINGULAR on a PC running Windows 95/98/NT/2K, you need to download one of the following archive files:

Minimal archive to download. Contains the BasicCygwin, Singular-3-0-0 and WinHelp components.
Typical archive to download. Contains the BasicCygwin, Singular-3-0-0,XEmacs, ESingular-3-0-0,WinHelp and HTML Help components.

You can obtain these (and other) archives from

Installing SINGULAR

The recent Setup program analyzes your system, e.g. detecting whether Cygwin is present and functional. Then it gives you hints and/or error messages with instructions during the installation.

If you have Cygwin installed
If the version of cygwin1.dll is not less than 1.1.8, you will be prompted that the BasicCygwin component will not be installed. Moreover, the Cygwin root directory will be proposed as the default installation directory. You can accept it, then Singular will be placed into the existing Cygwin environment. If you choose another destination, Singular will use Cygwin programs anyway. If your Cygwin has incorrect settings (like inconsistent mount points among the important ones), Singular Setup will correct them.

If you have XEmacs installed
The Cygwin port of XEmacs version 21.1.12 with the most important packages is included in the distribution. The use of non-Cygwin ports or earlier Cygwin ports has some quirks and does not work properly together with Singular (i.e., running ESingular results in problems). Nevertheless, if you want to test the compatibility of ESingular with your own XEmacs, just de-select the XEmacs component, but leave ESingular selected. If your XEmacs would be incompatible with ESingular, you can install just the XEmacs component and use in fact two different XEmacs programs. The setup program will search for XEmacs and packages in <TARGETDIR>/usr/local/lib. Here <TARGETDIR> is the directory which you selected while running setup. If you have Cygwin and/or XEmacs, you might have XEmacs installed there. To avoid the overwriting of your XEmacs files, setup will ask you what to do.

Customizing SINGULAR

The following step(s) are optional:

  • To conveniently access all files on your computer, mount the drives of your disk(s):
    1. Open a bash shell.
    2. For each drive (letter) issue the following command (the drive C: is used in the example):
      mount -f -s -t C: /C
    After mounting the drive(s) this way, you can conveniently access the files on a drive from the bash and from XEmacs using the /C/ prefix.

  • Create your personal HOME directory.
    Various applications (e.g., bash or XEmacs) store user-specific configuration/customization files in the HOME directory of the current user. During the installation, the HOME directory is globally set for all users to /home/Singular. To create your individual HOME directory follow these steps:
    1. Create a directory (folder), say, C:\home\MyHome.
    2. Copy all files from /home/Singular to C:\home\MyHome.
    3. Set the _user_ environment variable HOME to C:\home\MyHome:
      On Windows 95/98, edit the respective line the AUTOEXEC.BAT file.
      On Windows NT/2K add an entry in your Environment control panel.
    4. Restart your computer (On Windows 95/98).
    You may furthermore examine the files copied into your HOME directory and adjust (i.e. edit) them to your personal preferences/needs.

Uninstalling Singular

You can uninstall individual or all installed components by opening the Software panel of the System configuration control panel. Simply double-click the Singular-3-0-0 item and follow the instructions given there.

For any other troubles, please send an email to and include the header which is displayed by starting up SINGULAR with the -v option, and a description of your machine and operating system.

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            User manual for Singular version 3-0-0, May 2005, generated by texi2html.