Progress Update for DDRescue-GUI on Windows: wxPython 4.x support!

It’s been a while since I talked about getting DDRescue-GUI running on Windows, but I have made some progress on this recently, and I thought it would be good to share the news. There are still quite a lot of hurdles I have to get over before it’s all done, but I’m getting there now.

wxPython 4 is now available for Cygwin

It took some time to get this working, but wxPython 4.x is now available as a Cygwin package. This is a major milestone, as wxPython is the GUI toolkit that DDRescue-GUI uses to run. wxPython 3.x has been available on Cygwin for a while, but this version only supports Python 2.x, and I recently dropped support for that version of Python, so it’s been a longstanding goal to get wxPython 4.x working well.

I now maintain wxPython in Cygwin, as the original package maintainer no longer has enough time to keep the packages up to date, so I have also rebuilt wxPython 3, fixing some issues relating to lock-ups and freezing that have plagued my initial version of DDRescue-GUI for Windows.

Current Status and Future Plans

As I write this, the current development version of DDRescue-GUI will run in Cygwin and can successfully perform a recovery. There are still some issues to sort out, and some missing functionality. I aim (but don’t promise!) to have this released before the start of the next academic year, so that it’s all done before I start my final year at university.

In order to get there, there are sadly still a few problems to resolve:

  • The wxPython packages need a quick rebuild to fix some dependency issues (won’t take long).
  • Fix remaining small issues in DDRescue-GUI when running on Cygwin (uncertain of the amount of time this will take). After this is done, I may provide another prerelease/initial version.
  • I need to support Cygwin/Windows in GetDevInfo to collect device information (might take a significant amount of time).
  • Ideally, provide output file mounting support on Cygwin/Windows, as I do on macOS and Linux (might take a significant amount of time).
  • Provide an installation package so Windows users do not have to install Cygwin first before running DDRescue-GUI (might take a significant amount of time).

So you can see the tasks ahead of me might be quite difficult to tackle, but I have confidence that I can complete them. I intend to provide little status updates on here from time to time when I make progress. It will depend on various other commitments and factors, hopefully these updates will be regular as things move along.

Conclusion aka TL;DR

I’ve made some solid progress towards getting DDRescue-GUI running on Windows, but there are still a fairly large number of hurdles to get over before I can declare it finished. As progress is made, I’ll provide status updates on here and I will do my best to have this done before the start of the next academic year.

That’s it for now, but stay tuned for more posts coming soon!

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About Hamish McIntyre-Bhatty

I'm a self-employed software developer working on Free Software projects, as well as studying for my degree with the Open University. Being pedantic when it comes to detail is fortunately useful for both of these things! A strong believer in free software, I have a few pay-for programs available under the GPLv3 and enjoy reporting bugs and helping to improve various open source projects, including volunteering at Wimborne Model Town to work on their river control system.

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