Friday, January 22, 2016

Compiling Aspell on Windows

Download Aspell

Download and extract GNU Aspell from
Download and extract the English dictionary (aspell6-en-2016.01.19-0.tar.bz2)

Install Chocolatey machine package manager

Start PowerShell as Administrator
Enter the following commands:
Set-ExecutionPolicy ByPass
iex ((new-object net.webclient).DownloadString(''))

Install the build tools

Start cmd as Administrator
Enter the following commands:
choco install msys2
choco install mingw
choco install activeperl

choco install linkshellextension

Start msys2_shell.bat in C:\tools\msys2
Enter the following commands:

pacman -S make
pacman -S diffutils

Update build script

Overwrite config.guess with file from;a=blob_plain;f=config.guess;hb=HEAD
Overwrite config.sub with file from;a=blob_plain;f=config.sub;hb=HEAD


In msys2 shell, navigate to downloaded Aspell
./configure CXXFLAGS='-O2' --enable-win32-relocatable --disable-rpath --prefix="C:/tools/Aspell" --enable-data-dir="C:/tools/Aspell/data" --enable-dict-dir="C:/tools/Aspell/data"

In the downloaded Aspell, add the file gen/dirs.h with the following contents
#define PREFIX "C:/tools/Aspell"
#define DATA_DIR "C:/tools/Aspell/data"

Add a line to common/file_util.cpp under the “#ifdef WIN32” section
#include "asc_ctype.hpp"

In msys2 shell, enter
make install

Add C:\tools\Aspell\bin to PATH system environment variable

Create hardlink from C:\tools\Aspell\data (drop as hardlink) to C:\tools\Aspell\lib\aspell-0.60 (pick link source)

Restart msys2 shell and navigate to downloaded Aspell dictionary and enter
make install

Final steps

Open cmd, navigate to c:\tools\Aspell\bin and enter
aspell dump config > ../aspell.conf
Open c:\tools\Aspell\aspell.conf in Notepad and add
encoding utf-8
below # default: !encoding = none

sug-mode bad-spellers
# sug-mode (string)
#   suggestion mode
# default: normal

To use in Aspell in Python

Download aspell-python from
In cmd, navigate to c:\tools\python\Scripts and enter
pip install [path to the file aspell-python.whl]

Create symbolic link from C:\ProgramData\Aspell to  C:\tools\Aspell
Create symbolic link from C:\tools\Aspell\Dictionaries\en_US to C:\tools\Aspell\data

Start Python
import aspell
spell = aspell.Speller()
enc = spell.ConfigKeys()['encoding'][1]