Upgrade your MASM32 linker from 5.012 to 7.10

You can upgrade your Microsoft (R) Incremental Linker from version 5.012.8078.0
to 7.10.3077 legally from Microsoft.

Please read the following procedures if you want to do that:

1. Go to Microsoft's website and download "Visual C++ Toolkit 2003", which is totally free of charge.
2. Install the setup EXE file and rip 4 files from its installed directory.
3. Back up the Original linker and copy those 4 files to the "bin" directory of MASM32.

To save your time, the link to "Visual C++ Toolkit 2003" is posted here:


Visual C++ Toolkit 2003

The Microsoft Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 includes the core tools developers need to compile and
link C++-based applications for Windows and the .NET Common Language Runtime ? compiler, linker,
libraries, and sample code.

Quick Info

File Name: VCToolkitSetup.exe

Download Size: 32177 KB

Date Published: 7/6/2004

Version: 1.01

The Microsoft Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 includes the core tools developers need to compile and link C++-based applications for Windows and the .NET Common Language Runtime:

Microsoft C/C++ Optimizing Compiler and Linker. These are the same compiler and linker that ship with Visual Studio .NET 2003 Professional!

C Runtime Library and the C++ Standard Library, including the Standard Template Library. These are the same static-link libraries included with Visual Studio.

Microsoft .NET Framework Common Language Runtime. Visual C++ can optionally build applications that target the Common Language
Runtime (CLR).

Sample code. The toolkit includes four samples designed to showcase the powerful new features of the 2003 version, including new optimization capabilities,
features to improve code-security and robustness, enhanced ISO C++ standards support, and the ability to use the .NET Framework library and target the CLR.

Read about the samples included with the Toolkit, and the Visual C++ compiler technology used to implement them by visiting the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 Home Page.
Visual C++ Toolkit 2003

System Requirements
Supported Operating Systems: Windows 2000, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP
Note: If you have already installed Microsoft Visual Studio .NET 2003 Professional or Enterprise edition, you do not need to install the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003
unless you want to specifically try the included samples.
Posted on 2004-11-02 02:28:34 by ssa
Why use Microsoft linker when you have Pelle's polink? It can do all the same things, but it also sometimes produces smaller exes.

I would be more interested in the new ml.exe..
Posted on 2004-11-02 07:10:53 by Petroizki
Always exercise some caution upgrading for no purpose, the win98ddk linker works well with all versions of ML and has default alignment of 512 bytes. As Petroizki mentioned, Pelle's linker usually produces a smaller exe that the series 5 Microsoft ones.

The linker in the VCTOOLKIT is basically designed for C compilers and you have to tweak the options to get the correct file alignment for a MASM file otherwise it ends up far larger.
Posted on 2004-11-02 07:25:03 by hutch--
Also, Pelle's linker creates smaller sized import libraries.
Posted on 2004-11-02 09:44:13 by Vortex
I use Visual C/C++ 6.0 for C programming and it makes an excellent debugger for MASM32 programs.

I thought I would mention that LINK 7.x has a different debug format than LINK 5.x or 6.x. The problem I ran into was if you use LINK 7.x you will not be able to debug in Visual Studio 6.0. The same goes for LINK 8.x.

If you want to debug in Visual Studio 6.0 you need to use LINK 5.x or 6.x.
Posted on 2004-11-02 13:49:30 by Greg