I have just started using Ubuntu, but I need to develop an application, something small that can run on my work computer which HAS to run Windows 7. I need to make a application for my work that has client/server capabilities, a single networked database and the ability for employees to change database content and then submit forms. Are there any IDEs out there that can do something like build programs for Windows, like Visual Basic/Studio?

If the answer to the above question is "no", then what is the easiest language to learn for development on Ubuntu?


3 Answers 3


I'm not sure I understood what you need.

  • If what you need is to build a program inside Ubuntu that will be run on Windows, what you need is cross compiling: How to program for Windows in Ubuntu?. I believe you should forget about VB, however, if you're willing to use Linux.
  • If what you need is to write a program that can be compiled in Windows, what you need is cross platform. You should look for GTK+, Qt or something similar for the GUI. The language is a matter of choice, but I believe C++ would be the natural one, if you're using any of these two libraries.

About the easiest language to learn development in Ubuntu, I don't believe there's an answer to this question. The easiest language for me might not be easiest for you. I would use Python for quick tasks and C++ for more complex applications.


Welcome to AskUbuntu. The best way to develop programmes that run both on Linux and Windows is to do so on a portable platform, or portable language. Some options:

  • Java

  • Pyhon

  • C/C++ (in this case you need to recompile the programme on the Windows machine)

  • C#

For the first three I recommend Eclipse as IDE; for C# Monodevelop is the way to go.

But there may be many other options.


If you actually want to use C# and .NET in the process you'll need to install Windows in a virtual machine. If you're targeting a specific problem you should always have a machine (virtual or not) which runs that platform for testing. Once you've created a Windows machine you'll be able to work with Visual Studio on that.

You can always try to create a application in a cross platform programming language like Java. Applications written in Java are able to run on any platform the JRE supports without a lot of effort.

  • 1
    I strongly agree on the importance of testing software on all platforms that will be supported. But programs for the .NET framework, written in C#, can be developed (and the executables can be built) in Ubuntu and still run on Windows. Of course, they may run differently on Mono in Ubuntu than on Microsoft's CLR on Windows, but almost any program may run differently on different platforms (and thus, as you say, must be tested). Some differences can be mitigated by using Mono on Windows too. Commented Jan 15, 2014 at 8:39
  • C# Application can be written using monodevelop on ubuntu an will run on fine on windows. (the same binaries can run on both ubuntu and windows provided you are careful) How do I know this? because I've done it.
    – trampster
    Commented Jan 15, 2014 at 8:59

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