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The Pawn embedded scripting language
Pawn is a simple, typeless, 32-bit extension language with a C-like syntax.
The Pawn compiler outputs P-code (or bytecode) that subsequently runs on an
abstract machine. Execution speed, stability, simplicity and a small footprint
were essential design criterions for both the language and the abstract

Through the evolution of the Pawn toolkit, this README had steadily been
growing, as more and more components were added and the project was ported
to diverse environments. Detailed instructions how to port, build and/or
embed Pawn can be found in a separate document entitled "The Pawn booklet:
Implementer's Guide". To get the Pawn toolkit working on your system, please
(also) consult that document. To learn about the Pawn language, read the
document "The Pawn booklet: The Language". If you installed Pawn via the
Setup utility (for Microsoft Windows) or the autopackage (for Linux), you
probably have these documents already. Otherwise, you can obtain both these
documents from the web page devoted to Pawn:

Below is a list of topics that this README covers, in this order:

o  Getting started
   How to get your first Pawn program running

o  Building with CMake
   For a portable way to (re-)build the software

o  Using the AMX DLL
   How to create a program that uses the pre-built DLL.

o  Building the AMX DLL
   Notes on how the DLL must be built itself.

o  Building extension modules for the AMX DLL

See the "NOTICES" file for acknowledgments for parts of Pawn not written by

Getting started
The first question is: what do you need? If you are using Microsoft Windows,
download the Pawn toolkit as a self-extracting setup file; this gives
everything that you need to get started:
o  binaries for Win32
o  full source of all tools/libraries
o  documentation (Adobe Acrobat format)

Users of other operating systems should download either the ""
file or the "pawnkit.tgz" file ("Pawn toolkit" archives), because it
contains the full source code. The difference between the "ZIP" file and the
"TGZ" file is, apart from the different archiving tool used, that the source
file in the ZIP file has DOS/Windows line endings (CR/LF) and the "TGZ" file
has Unix line endings (LF only). When "unpacking" these archives, make sure
that the directory structure in the ZIP/TGZ files is retained. Otherwise, the
Pawn compiler will not be able to find its "include" files, for example.

You should also download the two documentation files "pawn-lang.pdf" and
"pawn-imp.pdf" --the "Language guide" and the "Implementer's guide"
respectively. You may need to build the compiler and abstract machine, and
the "Implementer's guide" is likely to give you precise guidelines (or at
least, it will point you in the right direction). There are a few guidelines
for building the system with CMake in the section "Building with CMake", below.

Assuming that you have obtained (somehow) an executable version of the Pawn
compiler and the Pawn run-time, you should put it in a directory. However,
the Pawn compiler also needs to locate "include files". On many operating
systems, the Pawn compiler is able to automatically read these header files
from the directory "include" that is below the directory that the compiler is
in itself. Thus, if the Pawn compiler (the executable file) is in directory
"C:\WhatEver\Pawn\bin", I suggest that you create either the directory
"C:\WhatEver\Pawn\include" or "C:\WhatEver\Pawn\bin\include" and copy the
".inc" files there. If your operating system is not compatible with Win32 or
Linux, the Pawn compiler may not know how to locate the "include" directory
and you have to specify it yourself with the "-i" command line option (when
running the compiler).

That behind your back, locate one of the example scripts (e.g. "hello.p") and
compile it with:

        pawncc hello

This should produce "hello.amx", which you can then run with:

        pawnrun hello.amx

Many applications that use Pawn, run the Pawn compiler as a child process;
i.e. the Pawn compiler is often a separate, self-contained program. The
abstract machine, however, is almost never a separate process: typically you
want the abstract machine to be integrated in the application so that scripts
can call into the application. In other words, you might be using "pawncc" as
is, but you won't be using "pawnrun" as is. This is why pawnrun is kept short
and dump, "pawnrun" is a program that is mostly developed in the Pawn manual to
show you what you should do at a minimum to embed Pawn into a program.

Building with CMake
CMake is a cross-platform, open-source make system, which generates "makefile's"
or project files for diverse compilers and platforms. See
for more information on CMake plus a freely downloadable copy.

The Pawn toolkit comes with a CMake project file that builds the compiler, a
simple run-time program that embeds the abstract machine, and a simple console
debugger. The CMake project file is in the "source" subdirectory of where the
Pawn toolkit is installed, when you installed the self-extracting "setup" for
Microsoft Windows. When unpacking the Pawn source code from a "ZIP" or "TGZ"
archive, the CMake project file is in the main directory where you unpacked
the archive into.

Using CMake
1. Run cmake-gui.

2. Select for the source code directory, the "source" subdirectory in the
   directory tree for the toolkit.

   For example, if you installed the toolkit in C:\Pawn, the source directory
   is C:\Pawn\source.

3. Select as destination the "bin" subdirectory, or any other directory of your
   choice. The makefile (or project files) will be generated in the destination

4. Select the compiler to use, as well. On Microsoft Windows, CMake supports
   Microsoft, Borland, OpenWatcom and GNU compilers. Under Linux, CMake supports
   GNU compilers by default, but allows you to set up specific (cross) compilers.

5. Click on the "Configure" button. After an initial configuration, you may
   have items displayed in red.  By this, CMake indicates that these items
   may need adjustment, but in the case of Pawn, this is rarely needed. Click
   "Configure" once more for the final configuration.

6. Click on the "Generate" button, to create the makefiles or project files.
   In older versions of CMake, there is an "OK" button instead of "Generate".

7. Build the program in the usual way. For Microsoft Visual C/C++, CMake has
   created a Visual Studio project and "Workspace" file; for other compilers
   CMake builds a makefile.

Using the AMX DLL
The 32-bit AMX DLL (file AMX32.DLL) uses __stdcall calling convention, which
is the most common calling convention for Win32 DLLs. If your compiler defaults
to a different calling convention (most do), you must specify the __stdcall
calling convention explicitly. This can be done in two ways:
1. a command line option for the C/C++ compiler (look up the manual)
2. setting the macros AMX_NATIVE_CALL and AMXAPI to __stdcall before including
   AMX.H. The macros AMX_NATIVE_CALL and AMXAPI are explained earlier in this

The 32-bit AMX DLL comes with import libraries for various Win32 compilers:
o  for Microsoft Visual C/C++ version 4.0 and above, use AMX32M.LIB
o  for Borland C++ version 5.0 and for Borland C++ Builder, use AMX32B.LIB
o  for Watcom C/C++ version 10.6 and 11.0, use AMX32W.LIB

The AMX DLL already includes "core" and "console" functions, which are the
equivalents of the C files AMXCORE.C and AMXCONS.C. Console output goes to a
text window (with 30 lines of 80 characters per line) that the DLL creates.
The core and console functions are automatically registered to any Pawn
program by amx_Init().

   Microsoft Visual C/C++ version 5.0 or 6.0, 32-bit:
        cl -DAMXAPI=__stdcall prun-dll.c amx32m.lib

        (Note: the "prun-dll" example does not register additional native
        functions. Therefore, AMX_NATIVE_CALL does not need to be defined.)

   Watcom C/C++ version 11.0, 32-bit:
        wcl386 /l=nt_win /dAMXAPI=__stdcall prun-dll.c amx32w.lib

        (Note: the "prun-dll" example does not register additional native
        functions. Therefore, AMX_NATIVE_CALL does not need to be defined.)

   Borland C++ version 3.1, 16-bit:
        bcc -DAMXAPI=__cdecl -W -ml prun-dll.c amx16.lib

        (Note: the program must be compiled as a Win16 application, because
        only Windows programs can use DLLs (option -W). Using large memory
        model, option -ml, is not strictly required, but it is the most
        convenient. Finally, note that the 16-bit DLL uses __cdecl calling
        convention for its exported functions, for reasons explained below.)


Pawn is a quick and small scripting language that requires few resources.







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