My experience included many hours of googling and looking through articles after articles explaining on how to setup a lightning node. Most of the articles explained step by step guides on using Bitcoind + LND on Ubuntu. Other articles used the Lightning Network Testnet for setting a node up on Windows. I might have not looked hard enough but I decided to figure it out myself. My node on Windows is working now and I successfully tested sending micro payments to Y'alls to read articles and also purchased Blockstream's "Don't trust, verify" T-shirt in their store! Here is how I got it working on Windows:
Download & install Bitcoin Core 0.16.0 and let it sync the entire Bitcoin Blockchain (currently ~145GB) make sure you have enough space on your hard drive. Link: https://bitcoin.org/en/download This will take time depending on the speed of your internet connection. Just let it run until it's done, took me about two days. Also make sure your Port 8333 is open and DO NOT encrypt your wall for this to work.
Download & install ACINQ Eclair & Java JRE 1.8 I installed the Java first as it is a requirement per their wiki. Then i installed the latest Eclair software. I used the Windows autoinstaller (exe file) - Make sure Port 9735 is open as well. Link: https://github.com/ACINQ/eclair/releases
Setup Bitcoin Core to talk to Eclair by going to Settings/Options/Open Configuration File. It will warn you that it's used for advanced user options, just say okay. Copy and paste this into your window:
rpcuser=(your username) <--pick your username
rpcpassword=(your password) <-- pick your password
Now safe and close that window. Your Bitcoin Core is now setup to talk to Eclair.
- Setup Eclair to talk to Bitcoin Core by going to this directory on your computer: C:\Users(your user).eclair\