I’m not a coder at all, but building Blender on Linux and Windows is so easy that I usually compile it, before I start Blender
Now if I want to give the very latest Cycles-X branch a try without having to wait for the Buildbot doing its magic, I usually do this:
Switch branch with “git checkout cycles-x”
Then I copy the contents of the “/build_linux_full/bin” folder to another folder and switch back to master with
git checkout master
This works but apart from the manual work, the builds take quite a while because they’re built from scratch and all the CUDA kernels etc. have to be rebuilt.
There has to be an easier way. I already found that using the “BUILD_DIR=/folder_to_build_blender” command line option for make kind of helps me avoid to build everything into the same folder, but maybe there is a much easier and cleaner way of doing this.
@ThomasDinges make.bat is a helper script on windows, it is not and is not intending to be on 1:1 feature parity with the actual make program and makefile on other platforms. most major commands are implemented (ie lite/full/release) but not all, it offers options other platforms don’t, and some options work slightly different between the two.
make help works on both platforms though and should show the options available for that platform you’re currently on.
I normally create a separate checkout directory from my main source directory, with .git symlinked to the real one. Then I can git checkout whatever commit/branch I want (followed by git reset to restore the index to some sane state for the main source directory).
It’s easy enough to create any number of these checkout directories, for different builds, and also to wipe them and start again if I hit any problems.
I made a little program where you can pick the branch you want, from all the branches that are available, and it builds it for you in a specific folder.
I am on holiday right now but when I come back home I can share it here so you can give it a try.
Here is the script, the only thing you have to change is the self.base_path variable in blender_updater.py, it should be the absolute path to your blender project (should end with “/blender_git/blender/” if you followed the building tutorial from the wiki).