Free Forth Compilers, Free ANSI Forth IDEs

Free ANSI Forth Compilers & Free Forth Development Systems


Free Forth Compilers and Development Systems

Forth is a procedural stack-based computer programming language. The language is modular and extensible, does not have any type checking or specific grammar. You can typically interactively enter and execute commands in Forth, or compile a program in the traditional way as with other languages. The free Forth compilers listed below may either implement the ANSI Forth 94 standard, some subset of the standard, or perhaps even the upcoming Forth 200x standard.

If you are looking for documentation or tutorials on learning or using the Forth language, you may wish to look at the selection of Forth books on Amazon.com.

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Free Forth Compilers and Forth Development Systems

DX-Forth New

DX-Forth is a Forth 94 compiler that runs on MSDOS (and presumably DOS clones too) and creates DOS applications. Interestingly, in spite of it being a compiler for an operating system no longer in wide use, it appears to be actively maintainted, with its latest update in 2011, so it's probably still being used somewhere (probably in programming courses or in embedded systems). Multitasking support is included in the form of a round-robin co-operative multitasker. The compiler produces direct-threaded code. The program's documentation states that it is in the public domain.

Gforth Forth Compiler

Gforth is GNU's Forth compiler, and like many of the GNU tools, it is portable to a number of systems. It implements the ANSI Forth language. From the documentation, this Forth compiler "employs traditional implementation techniques: its inner interpreter is indirect or direct threaded".

4tH Forth Compiler/Interpreter

4tH is a compiler/interpreter that handles Forth-like source code. It supports MS-DOS, Windows, Linux, Coherent, AIX, SunOS, BOS, BOS-X, BSD, Macintosh OS X, BeOS, RISC-OS, etc. It is a full Forth compiler that generates intermediate bytecode that can run (using its runtime presumably) under any of the supported systems.

bigForth Forth Compiler

bigForth is a native code Forth compiler originally developed for the Atari ST. The current version runs on Windows 95/98/NT and Linux. It is released under the GNU GPL. It generates optimised native code for the Intel i386 and has a number of tools included: a multitasker, a decompiler, a source level debugger, and an editor. A huge library is included and separate compilation is also supported. You may also want to explore their MINOS, a GUI for X, written for the Linux and Win32 versions of the Forth system.

ATLAST Embeddable Forth

ATLAST is an embeddable FORTH-like language, originally developed by Autodesk, Inc, and is based on the FORTH-83 language with numerous extensions. It is portable to MSDOS, OS/2, Macintosh, and many Unix systems. Embedding this Forth into your application allows you to extend provide your users with a very powerful macro facility. This Forth compiler is released into the public domain.

Win32Forth

Win32Forth is an ANSI Forth compiler that comes with an interactive console, an integrated source level debugger, a syntax highlighting integrated editor, etc.

SP-Forth

SP-Forth is an optimizing Forth compiler and interpreter producing for Windows, Linux and Kolibri OS.

Forth32: an MSDOS excerpt of fig-Forth

This is another 32-bit Forth compiler excerpted from figForth (see elsewhere on this page). This one runs on MSDOS.

figforth Forth Development System

figForth is a complete Forth development system for Linux and MSDOS. It comes with sample programs, benchmarks, an assembler, a decompiler, an editor and of course, documentation. It is released under the GNU GPL.

Lina Forth Compiler

This is a 32 bit ISO Forth compiler/interpreter for Linux. It uses indirect threaded code. It has a loadable assembler.

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