Failed attempt at running an application

Feb 22, 2014
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It was frustrating but in the end it was a funny failure. It has been several years since I have done anything electronic related. I've recently been thinking about a few simple power designs. I thought the designs would be easier to imagine if I could put it in a schematic on PC. So I decided to download a schematic design application.

First attempt was a 30 day trial.
Second attempt is where the failure ends in humor.

I went to XCircuit [] to download their software. At first all I saw was source downloads to be compiled. Since I have never compiled my own applications, I don't want to try now. I kept looking for a pre-compiled download.

Once the pre-compiled files was downloaded, they needed to be unzipped. At first I didn't notice there was a predefined location the application needed to be extracted to. There was an error though that side tracked me from that designated location. The error mentioned needing tcl and tk to run the application.

So I'm back on XCircuit looking for Tcl and Tk. The instruction lead me to ActiveTcl []. At this time I finally notice the designated locations for both software to run from. After a few more failures and finally getting everything in the proper locations, I am greeted with another error. This error suggest that I am running the wrong version of ActiveTcl. Apparrently XCircuit requires a specific version. The version it is looking for is ActiveTcl 8.5. The version available to download is 8.6.

Now by this time I am searching for Active 8.5. I find a few places and start the download. After a moment or two with rates hanging around 10kb/s, I pause the download and look for a new location. I stop looking for locations after getting three downloads going at once. The download was only 30MB. But yet I had time to start from three locations. Watching the three locations the downloads start to increase in rate. I canceled two of them before one had finished.

Here is the funny part. I then went on to install ActiveTcl 8.5. I was then greeted with an error that the version I was installing could not be run on my system. At this time I can only imagine the software has been outdated and the system is preventing it from installing.

After it is all said and done I have ActiveTcl 8.5 that will not install. I have ActiveTcl 8.6 that will install but doesn't have the files XCircuit looks for. And I have the potential to compile a newer version of XCircuit, but have never gone down that road.

I think I need to look elsewhere. That was too much irritation. Not to mention the need to place everything in a specific location just screams CHEAP to me. I think even I can program registry look-ups, to find where ActiveTcl is installed.


Noob Whisperer
Nov 19, 2013
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I think I've been down a similar rabbit hole a time or two myself.
It usually starts with a bright idea to try something, which of course I want to do for free and it generally goes downhill from there.

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