Five years: A Brief History.

In February 2002 I’ve published the first MiniGUI version.

At that moment, only an experiment whose target for me was research about Harbour-C interface.

A lot of people were interested in the Project and from the beginning collaborated with me in many ways.

Some months later I’ve noticed that the experiment could turn in something more serious.

Being one of my basic targets the easy of use (according xBase spirit) a little time later I’ve added the ‘semi-oop’ interface. That turned the combination of Harbour+MiniGUI in a tool that besides a xBase compiler, offered a GUI, as easy to use as the VB one (yet simpler). This made grow even more the MiniGUI popularity and with it, the problems.

Some people, began an aggressive campaign of lies, pointing not only technical aspects of Harbour and MiniGUI, but personal issues, targeted to create false conflicts in the discussion groups. I let to the readers criteria the theories about the motivations of that people.

This growing brings other problems too. The most serious were the discrepancies about technical issues related with the project direction. Some contributors were not coinciding with my vision of that.

I must accept that could had been solutions for these problems, joining efforts in favor an unique target, but sadly, I don’t knew how to find solution in time.

Today there are two alternative MiniGUI versions besides mine. Yet I’ve wished to find a solution for the differences to make this not happened, that means that the seeding done five years ago, had got results, even much more ahead of my own expectations.

MiniGUI had never existed without its users and contributors and is to them (as every year) my endless gratitude.

Specially to those that got to me the initial impulse, as Grigory Filatov, Jacek Kubica, Ciro Vargas Clemov, Ryszard Rylko (who allow to me to include the HbPrinter code in MiniGUI) and Janusz Pora (I’ve had serious discrepancies with him, but I recognize his enormous efforts and enthusiasm).

For the ‘classic’ OOP defenders that had attacked MiniGUI during years, I want to remember them, that VB turned in the most popular development tool in the world, based in a non-classic scheme for GUI handling, oriented to make things easier for the programmer, let him focus in the problem to solve instead to do it the language complexities. If we are in the xBase world is because this is that we want (or must want). MiniGUI must not be ‘corrected’ to be converted to a traditional paradigm. It is simply an alternative, and as such, we have right to grant its existence.

Regarding the future, It could not be better.

Harbour is in Beta 1, extremely solid and efficient. Surely we have the final version soon.

Regarding MiniGUI, is extremely stable and reliable too. Since I successfully adapted it to work with MingW, we have now with a completely free package (Harbour + MiniGUI + MingW).

Finally, I want to thank to all people that collaborated in some way and whose contributions are documented in five years of ‘changelogs’ and (of course) an special thanks to Pepe Ruano, creator and administrator of

There is a lot to do, but I can say with satisfaction that my old dream, a Clipper for Windows free and easy to use, has been reached.

Thanks To All.

Roberto Lopez


Note: This article borrowed by courtesy of author.

           Published at :  March 03, 2007 here.