MCTDH on Cygwin

Since the MCTDH program and utilities rely heavily on UNIX semantics, it is currently not possible to install MCTDH natively on the family of MS Windows operating systems. The only known method for running MCTDH on Windows is using Cygwin which provides a complete GNU/Linux-like environment on top of Windows. Cygwin is free and open source.

Installing Cygwin

To install Cygwin, download and run the setup.exe from the Cygwin homepage. The setup will offer you a selection of packages which can be downloaded and installed. The initial selection contains only the most basic packages. For MCTDH, you will need to select some additional packages for installation. See below. (Selecting a package automatically selects all its dependencies too.)

Installation options

The setup will first ask for some general installation options, where you should take note of the following issues:

Package Selection

The following package selection works with Cygwin-1.7.9 on Windows XP SP3. Earlier or later versions of Cygwin might differ in the organization or names of the packages, and in the way that dependencies are handled.

All these packages together amount to a total download size of ~200MB and to an installed size of ~600MB.

If you install as a non-administrative user, you might receive the error " exit code 3" near the end of the installation. It is safe to ignore this. (Cygwin tries to create a desktop shortcut for all users, which is not allowed for non-admin users.)

Running Cygwin

Simply click on the Cygwin icon which the install process created on your desktop. This will provide you with a bash shell where you can work just like in any Unix-like environment.

If you also want to start X applications (which is e.g. necessary to run gnuplot from the analyse routines), you should issue the command "xinit" from the Cygwin shell. This will start the X server and one xterm. (You might have to acknowledge a security warning from Windows.) You should then start a window manager (run "openbox &"). Proceed by continuing your work inside the xterm window.

Installing MCTDH

Once you have the Cygwin environment running, unpack the MCTDH source code in (e.g.) your home directory and continue with the regular MCTDH installation process.

As we encountered problems with support for pthreads, you should install without the option for parallelisation (choose "lenp" when asked).

If you chose not to install the tetex packages, then during the installation process you must answer "no" to the question on whether the documentation should be compiled. Otherwise you will get error messages.