Chez Scheme Version 7.9.3

Distribution Contents and Installation Instructions
Cadence Research Systems

NOTE: This version is out-of-date

A newer, open-source version of Chez Scheme is available at


Chez Scheme is an efficient and reliable implementation of Scheme based on an incremental optimizing compiler that produces efficient code and does so quickly. Chez Scheme Version 7.9.3 is a prerelease of Chez Scheme Version 8. It implements all of R6RS Scheme along with numerous language and programming environment extensions.

Petite Chez Scheme is a complete Scheme system that is fully compatible with Chez Scheme but uses a fast interpreter in place of the compiler. It was conceived as a run-time environment for compiled Chez Scheme applications, but is also useful as a stand-alone Scheme system. Programs written for Chez Scheme run unchanged in Petite Chez Scheme, as long as they do not depend specifically on the compiler, albeit not as quickly and without the debugging information generated by the compiler. In fact, Petite Chez Scheme is built from the same sources as Chez Scheme, with all but the compiler sources included.

Both systems are copyrighted by Cadence Research Systems and are distributed under license. Use of Chez Scheme requires a license fee, while use of Petite Chez Scheme does not. Petite Chez Scheme is freely redistributable, while Chez Scheme may not be redistributed in any form.

The threaded versions are the same as the nonthreaded versions but support multithreading (and multiprocessing on computers with multiple processors or processor cores) based on Posix threads. They run somewhat slower than the nonthreaded versions for single-threaded applications.

The 64-bit (Intel/AMD and Sparc) versions available on some platforms support larger address spaces but typically run somewhat more slowly than the 32-bit versions due to larger memory overhead.

Complete online documentation for Chez Scheme and Petite Chez Scheme is available at in the form of two books: The Scheme Programming Language, 4th Edition and the Chez Scheme Version 8 User's Guide. The former is also available in print form from MIT Press or from various online and local retailers.

NOTE: The Scheme Widget Library (SWL), a free windowing and graphics library with a built-in editor and window-based REPL, has not yet been modified to run in Version 7.9.3 and may not be available until the release of Version 8. 7.9.3 should therefore be run in a shell window, and a separate text editor should be used to prepare Scheme source files.

General Download Instructions

Petite Chez Scheme may be downloaded at no cost via the links in the Petite Chez Scheme section below. Chez Scheme requires a license fee; if you have purchased a license, it may be downloaded via the links in the Chez Scheme section below.

Before you download Chez Scheme or Petite Chez Scheme, please read the appropriate license agreement(s) below.

Do not proceed with the installation unless you agree to the terms of the license agreement(s). Use of Chez Scheme, which is compiler-based, requires a license fee. It cannot be redistributed. Use of Petite Chez Scheme, which is interpreter-based, does not require a license fee, and it may be redistributed. Petite Chez Scheme may be used as a stand-alone Scheme system or as an application-delivery vehicle for compiled code produced by Chez Scheme. Please refer to the license agreements and to Section 2.10 of the Chez Scheme Version 8 User's Guide for details.

Instructions for installing Chez Scheme and Petite Chez Scheme are given in the installation instructions section.

Distribution Contents

Release notes, etc.

Petite Chez Scheme

32-bit nonthreaded versions

64-bit nonthreaded versions

32-bit threaded versions

64-bit threaded versions

Scheme Widget Library (SWL)

SWL is not yet available for Version 7.9.3.

Installation Instructions

Installation instructions are given below for the nonthreaded versions of Chez Scheme. Installation of the threaded versions is similar.

Windows installation

To install both Chez Scheme and Petite Chez Scheme under Windows, run csv793.exe. To install Petite Chez Scheme only (e.g., for home use or as part of a delivered application), run pcsv793.exe.

You may run Chez Scheme or Petite Chez Scheme by clicking on the appropriate desktop icons. If you did not deselect the option to set up the path variable to allow shell use, you can run Chez Scheme in a shell window by typing scheme or run Petite Chez Scheme in a shell window by typing petite. SWL is not available for Version 7.9.3, so source files will have to be prepared in a separate text editor.

Chez Scheme and Petite Chez Scheme can be uninstalled via the add/remove programs icon in the control panel.

While it is okay to install Chez Scheme over an existing Petite Chez Scheme installation of the same version, we suggest you uninstall any earlier versions of Chez Scheme and/or Petite Chez Scheme before installing a new version.

Mac OS X installation

To install Chez Scheme 7.9.3 under Mac OS X, follow the tarball installation instructions below. For installation under Mac OS X 10.4, pass the --noforce-relink option to configure to avoid linker errors.

Tarball installation

To install Chez Scheme and/or Petite Chez Scheme from a .tar.gz file, first unpack the .tar.gz file. This will produce the directory csv7.9.3 containing the software. The file csv7.9.3/ReadMe contains installation instructions, but the following usually suffices:

cd csv7.9.3/custom
make install

The configure script recognizes several options. To build the threaded version, if both threaded and nonthreaded versions are available, pass the --threads option to configure; to build the 64-bit version, if both 32- and 64-bit versions are available, pass the --64 option. To disable relinking of the executable image against local libraries, use --noforce-relink. Run ./configure --help for more options.

If you want to test the build before installation, consult the file csv7.9.3/ReadMe for instructions.

To install both Chez Scheme and Petite Chez Scheme, use csv7.9.3-machine-type.tar.gz. To install only Petite Chez Scheme, use pcsv7.9.3-machine-type.tar.gz instead.

For multiple .tar.gz files, it is safe and often desirable to unpack them into the same directory. You must run 'make distclean' between makes, then rerun './configure' for different machine types, however.

Once installation has been completed, you can run Chez Scheme in a shell window by typing scheme and run Petite Chez Scheme in a shell window by typing petite.

Run 'make uninstall' to see uninstallation instructions (this will not actually do the uninstallation) for Chez Scheme or Petite Chez Scheme.