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Windows Microsoft Programming

Free Desktop Software Development Dead In Windows 8 462

Posted by timothy
from the look-but-hardly-touch dept.
benfrog writes "Microsoft has decided to restrict Visual Studio 11 Express, the free-to-use version of its integrated development environment, to producing only Metro-style applications. Those who would like to produce conventional desktop applications or command line -based applications are stuck with Visual Studio 2010 or buying the full version. Microsoft announced the Visual Studio 11 lineup last week."
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Free Desktop Software Development Dead In Windows 8

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  • Wait, what now? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by CAKAS (2646219) on Friday May 25, 2012 @10:50PM (#40117263)
    Visual Studio is hardly the only development IDE on Windows. Yes, it is good, but you cannot really say that "free desktop software development dead in Windows 8" just because gasp, MS wants you to buy the new version. Hell, they even still offer Visual Studio 2010 for free!

    So if you are crying about this, what about coming up with those open source IDE's?? I understand that they have never matched Visual Studio, but seriously. I even buy good web development IDE's to my OS X, like Coda 2 [panic.com]. Stop being a cheap-ass winer and pay for quality tools.

    You know what this story actually tells? That even FOSS users don't like their IDE's. They want to use Visual Studio from Microsoft because frankly, it is much better than the open source alternatives.

    Visual Studio 11 is an improvement in many ways over Visual Studio 2010. Its C++ compiler, for example, is a great deal more standards-compliant, especially with the new C++ 11 specification. It has powerful new optimization features, such as the ability to automatically use CPU features like SSE2 to accelerate mathematically intensive programs, and new language features to allow programs to be executed on the GPU. The new version of the C# language makes it easier to write programs that do their work on background threads and avoid making user interfaces unresponsive. The .NET Framework, updated to version 4.5, includes new capabilities for desktop applications, such as a ribbon control for Microsoft's WPF GUI framework.

    Taken together, there are many new features in Visual Studio 11 that are relevant, interesting, and useful for desktop developers. Indeed, things like the new WPF capabilities are only useful for desktop developers.

    If Microsoft is so bad then why the hell there isn't better open source versions of these things??

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 25, 2012 @10:53PM (#40117299)

      They're not better, they just have all the swanky advertising.

      Haven't you see the hot girls giving away free Microsoft stuff at conventions...Stallman just can't compete with that, even if you're into it.

      Which you're not. Don't even try to kid us. You aren't.

      • by Taco Cowboy (5327) on Friday May 25, 2012 @10:58PM (#40117335) Journal

        When I read Forbes naming Ballmer one of the 5 worst CEO, I had some doubt

        After reading TFA, the doubt is gone

        Indeed, Ballmer is utterly clueless on how to run Microsoft !

        • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:18PM (#40117497)

          Give them time to react to developer response. Who knows, maybe they'll end up following the Windows Phone model and pay people to develop on the platform.

          • by OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:49PM (#40117739) Homepage

            The problem here is the TV problem. Visual Studio 11 is free to use, but not free to produce. You're not the customer, you're the product that Microsoft is buying. And Microsoft wants you to produce metro applications, that drive demand for their new products (and phones/tablets), not drag users back to their previous products that people have already bought.

            It's as simple as that.

            Don't like being used ? Pay for what you need. It'll be a whole other story, even with the very same Microsoft products.

            Btw: as a developer I thought I'd add that Visual Studio is a fast, usable and well-integrated IDE, it's also a very, very industrial one. It is much less elegant than most of the alternatives.

            • or build your apps on HTML5 and to hell with it all.
            • by Eirenarch (1099517) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @04:16AM (#40119075)

              I find the decision very strange. The software that matters will still be developed for the desktop because big companies just buy Visual Studio (or more precisely have subscriptions). Trying to push Metro-style apps via students and hobbyists is in my opinion ridiculous. Also you get all the devs' rage and all the bad P.R. of Internet articles. If I saw any reason for them to do something evil, enslave the devs with their tools or push metro down our throats I would understand but this decision makes no sense to me in any way.

              • by Junta (36770) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @09:02AM (#40120179)

                Basically, they are frightened by Apple's relative success in mobile computing devices. They previously had a strategy around tablet computing, and Windows 7 represented them addressing all the obvious tweaks to be applied to the desktop environment for tablet use case. That market still hasn't taken off, so they assume Metro and ARM are required.

                Of course, I think WP7 lackluster performance in the phone space demonstrates that perceived value of Windows on ARM is not particularly compelling. They might still think that the large form factor tablets might be more competitive, but I don't see any reason to believe it. In tablet space, MS best hope is probably Medfield and Brazos based devices, bringing the massive set of MS compatibile applications.

                Forcing Metro on Desktop users to the extent possible is probably also a strategy to effectively throw the desktop usability under the bus to force people to get used to the interface. The hope being if users end up using Metro UI every day, it would grow on them or at least they would tolerate and understand it, and consistency between Windows Phone and Windows desktop gives the phone product a boost.

                • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @10:41AM (#40120795)

                  All of which might be a reasonable strategy, except that the typical uses for a Windows desktop PC are totally different to the typical uses for a tablet or similar mobile device. One is for power and content creation, the other is for easy content consumption. They just happen to overlap in that both can involve a web browser some of the time.

                  If MS sticks to its guns and tries to force Metro on everyone, I think it really will be the end of them, at least in their current monolithic form. I don't think they can afford another Vista or another poor assault on the mobile space, and Windows 8 has the potential to be both at the same time.

          • by shiftless (410350)

            Give them time

            No thanks

        • by ILongForDarkness (1134931) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:38PM (#40117671)

          Not a fan of his personality but since Gates has left: XBox, .Net, Windows server ~3X gain in market share, dido database solutions. Dominant in most large corporations for email as well. They've done some good things, they've done some bad things like all companies. In pure business sense they are doing pretty good: http://ycharts.com/companies/MSFT/earning_yield#series=type:company,id:MSFT,calc:earning_yield&zoom=&startDate=6/30/2002&endDate=5/25/2012&format=real&recessions=false [ycharts.com] earnings yield went from ~1.75% to ~10% since 2002 (couldn't get a chart out to 2000 when Gates left) while they traded ~flat since the dot com boom. So MS today has the earnings to back up the valuation versus MS of Gates day. They might have boggled the phone, screwed the pouch with Vista etc but they earn money, at least now. Consumer software isn't the only source of revenue.

          I think CEOs that need to be crapped on are the ones that gave them selves bonuses when they were getting government bailouts and losing money. Or the second they got out of government ownership decide to reward themselves with 10's of millions as deferred payment for all those hard years of ~1M/yr salaries.

          • by Junta (36770)

            Keep in mind that Gates is still chairman of the board, and was still effectively directing strategy as chief software architect in 2006. That means he was still there overseeing things including the launch of XBox360 and .Net. I don't know where you source the gain in market share to discern what timeline you *think* Ballmer was responsible for. Effectively, up until ~2007 Ballmer had training wheels on.

            MS offerings actually haven't signiicantly changed since Vista, which was released very shortly after

          • by Xest (935314) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @09:13AM (#40120245)

            "Not a fan of his personality but since Gates has left: XBox, .Net, Windows server ~3X gain in market share, dido database solutions."

            This isn't because of some magical action, but because Ballmer left them alone to go down the path Gates had already set them on. Effectively all Ballmer had to do was recognise these segments were growing and leave the teams the fuck alone to keep growing them - even a CEO as shit as him can manage that.

            The key issue is that under Ballmer no new product lines have arisen and been succesful. Just about every succesful product line Microsoft has now, stems from the Gates era. There have been a number of new high growth markets - portable media players, tablets, cell phones, and in every case, Ballmer has failed to grasp them and form a cohesive and succesful strategy around them. Even the web he's struggled with, I've never heard of anyone using Office 365, but I know plenty of people that use Google Apps for example. Their closest thing to success there has been Bing which basically just had an absolute fuckton of money thrown at it in terms of getting it as a default browser, and shit loads of advertising until it actually got to a slightly better than negligible market share.

            I don't disagree that Microsoft is still doing well as a business, but the point is it's basically on cruise control and that only works until you run out of gas. The world of computing is changing, it's become, and becoming more and more web and mobile based, but Microsoft isn't managing to follow - it's profits still come almost entirely from the desktop and server markets.

            This is why Ballmer is an abysmal failure of a CEO, because all he's achieved at Microsoft is to keep it on the same path it's been for the last 10 years, which sure, means that it's growing whilst that path remains viable, but what about when that path stops being viable? what if something comes along and eats into that path? What if say, Apple decides it is willing to start shipping and supporting Mac OS X for PCs and an office suite now that they have more than enough money to pursue that kind of venture? We know Jobs wouldn't have allowed it, but the new Apple, where Cook gives shareholders more of a say? What then for Microsoft? Their bottom line is under threat and they have nowhere else to run to.

            The fact is that Gates built a company so big, strong, and powerful that even the worst CEO in the world would take a few decades to really kill it off. You only have to look at Sony for another example of this - it's only just now really beginning to start having to explain it's failings, despite having been run fairly incompetently for at least a decade, getting on for two. Sony's looking right now like it may well end up fading into the history books with it's continued decline, but it's taken along time, and it'll probably take at least another decade yet to truly falter, that's assuming they don't get their act together and bring in competent management in the meantime.

            • by hairyfeet (841228)

              You sir should be modded up to 11 because you nailed it, I would just add that not only did he not grow but he actually shot his own company in the face with a key piece of tech he killed and that was PlaysFor Sure or PFS.

              At the time he got the bug in his ass to be "squirting" with his Zune PFS was a VERY popular program with a ton of licensees, all bring in money to MSFT and at the same time giving people a reason to use Windows and MSFT software for music. with PFS there was a ton of "all you can eat" sit

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward

          I just received a chair in the mail.

      • by Chrisq (894406)

        They're not better, they just have all the swanky advertising.

        I am an open source fan, but use Visual Studio at work. In my opinion Visual Studio is the best I have used for Windows only development. Now if you want to develop cross-platform its a whole different ballgame.

    • by Dogun (7502)

      It's worth noting that Visual Studio wasn't always free.

      More to the point, though, I doubt they're going to stop shipping the WDK, and that DOES include a C compiler. I hope you like nmake, though!

      • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Informative)

        by King InuYasha (1159129) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:11PM (#40117445) Homepage

        Windows 8 WDK won't include one. Neither will the Windows 8 SDK.

        • by Dogun (7502)

          Huh - sure enough they now leverage the compiler from outside the WDK.

          I sure as shit wouldn't pay for Visual Studio. I guess it's time for some other compilers to step up!

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by CAKAS (2646219)
            And is there any actual reason for why you would not pay for Visual Studio? Your "I guess it's time for some other compilers to step up!" even summarizes that you don't think that the other IDE's and compilers are not as good. You don't have any actual point apart from "I don't want to pay for the tools I use to get money".
            • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Insightful)

              by causality (777677) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:10AM (#40117871)

              And is there any actual reason for why you would not pay for Visual Studio?

              You know that among modern OSes, Windows is unusual in that it doesn't come with a compiler as a standard feature.

              You don't have any actual point apart from "I don't want to pay for the tools I use to get money".

              If there's one thing Microsoft is smart about, it's that they try to please developers. People developing software that runs on Windows is good for Microsoft. It gives others a reason to want to use Windows. How many people are unable to fully switch to Linux (but would like to) because some software they must use is Windows-only?

              This decision by Microsoft means that, up until now, Microsoft has considered such effects to be valuable enough to justify giving away Visual Studio. Now they are asking for money in addition to this effect. Complaining and trying to convince Microsoft to change their minds is standard haggling.

              Besides which, not everyone who programs on Windows is selling the software they produce. Some of them are developing FOSS. They would naturally be more reluctant to pay than someone who is actually engaged in a commercial use and considers it a cost of doing business.

              What part of this is so absurd to you?

              • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:4, Informative)

                by shutdown -p now (807394) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:21AM (#40117929) Journal

                You know that among modern OSes, Windows is unusual in that it doesn't come with a compiler as a standard feature.

                It's not quite so - it does come with compilers, just not with a C++ compiler. It does come with .NET (since Vista), and .NET runtime includes both C# and VB compilers, for the sake of runtime codegen (System.CodeDom).

              • You know that among modern OSes, Windows is unusual in that it doesn't come with a compiler as a standard feature.

                The 4 most popular operating systems are: Windows, OS X, Android, and iOS. None of them come with a compiler as a standard feature.

            • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:4, Interesting)

              by shutdown -p now (807394) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:19AM (#40117921) Journal

              And is there any actual reason for why you would not pay for Visual Studio?

              Maybe the fact that the price starts with $500?

              And it wasn't such a big deal, say, ten years ago, but now, when Xcode and Qt Creator and Eclipse are all free? Even if they aren't as good, that's still a hefty price to account for.

        • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Interesting)

          by shutdown -p now (807394) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:18AM (#40117907) Journal

          VS Express does, though. While it doesn't come with project templates with desktop apps, nor the header files for Win32 stuff, the compiler is the real deal. So you could, in theory, take VS Express compiler and combine it with headers and libs from WinSDK, to get a complete command-line tool chain.

          Or you could just install Qt SDK, which includes MinGW, Qt Creator, and Qt itself. All working out of the box with zero hassle.

          (I never thought the day would come when I'd have to recommend QC over VS on Windows...)

      • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Informative)

        by Sc4Freak (1479423) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:07AM (#40117851)

        The Windows SDK won't ship with MSVC, but Visual Studio Express 11 still does. Visual Studio Express 11 still includes the full compiler toolkits and you're free to use those however you want as you could with the Windows SDK. But the IDE itself will only support creation of Metro-style projects.

    • You are missing the point. If you use Windows it is the decelopment environment. Unless you write enterprise Java servlets you use vs.net with MSDN.

      Even if you switched to intels compiler and vi m you miss out on the docs from msdn and the project files from the internet to learn coding. Its the same with xcode from Apple.

      Only linux doesnt tie things like this to the ecosystem. There is a reason Borland is gone

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by CAKAS (2646219)
        MSDN documentation is free to access to everyone. There are also tons of programming books to learn coding from. They are all better than just learning from documentation.

        Borland isn't gone either - They're CodeGear now.
      • You can (at least as the moment not sure when VS 2011 Win 8 ships) get the .net compiler for free. You can still code in .Net and compile it. An MSDN subscription might be useful but most things you can find out for free on the web, heck the framework docs are all up on the web for free too (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/618ayhy6%28v=vs.100%29 for example). Compiling .Net from the command line is no worse than doing a C build with gcc from the command line. Search a bit to figure out what you need

    • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:4, Informative)

      by JDG1980 (2438906) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:22PM (#40117535)

      Visual Studio is hardly the only development IDE on Windows.

      What open-source C/C++ compilers for Windows support the full range of APIs? Last I checked, MinGW had no support for Direct2D and DirectWrite, which are hardly obscure or brand-new. And MinGW also does not support structured exception handling.

      • I wonder, what do you really need SEH for? The exceptions that use it - like access violation, or division by zero - are not the kind of things that should be generated in the first place, and if they do, the best thing you can do is let the process crash right there and then, so that the crash dump has full context of what went wrong.

        Direct2D and DirectWrite are a matter of producing the appropriate headers - it's all COM, so the compiler can handle it, you just need the corresponding declarations.

    • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:26PM (#40117581)

      If Microsoft is so bad then why the hell there isn't better open source versions of these things??

      Because Microsoft controls the APIs and can release new versions of Visual Studio simultaneously with the new releases of Windows? Because anybody who wants to do an open IDE for Windows has to wade through the craptastic Microsoft documentation to be a year behind the curve, right about time for the next set of API changes?

    • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by JoeMerchant (803320) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:33PM (#40117629)

      what about coming up with those open source IDE's?? I understand that they have never matched Visual Studio...

      You know what this story actually tells? That even FOSS users don't like their IDE's. They want to use Visual Studio from Microsoft because frankly, it is much better than the open source alternatives.

      ...

      If Microsoft is so bad then why the hell there isn't better open source versions of these things??

      I have recently migrated off of Visual Studio, onto Qt Creator [qt-project.org] because Creator has matured to be clearly better than Studio.

      Everyone has their own needs and preferences, I have copies of Studio, Eclipse and Creator on all of my machines at work and home - Eclipse is a necessary evil for some targets, but for the desktop, I was using Studio because it was the better environment - until the last six months or so.

      • by chrismcb (983081)

        I have recently migrated off of Visual Studio, onto Qt Creator [qt-project.org] because Creator has matured to be clearly better than Studio.

        Can you (or anyone) give some clear examples on what you think is better about QT than VS? And don't say things like "the editor is clearly better" That doesn't really help me. What is features do you like that one has and the other doesn't?
        I happen to like VS, the only other IDE I've used lately is xcode and it has some better autocompletion but otherwise I don't like it.

    • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Informative)

      by peppepz (1311345) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:42AM (#40118063)

      You know what this story actually tells?

      1) That you haven't read the article. Not only is Microsoft dropping the free edition of Visual Studio, they're also dropping the compiler from Windows SDK, therefore forcing you to buy the paid version of Visual Studio or, some people are suggesting here, rip the compiler out of the "free" Metro version of Visual Studio (I'm assuming that they found some guarantee by Microsoft that they will always make this hack possible both technically and legally).
      2) That you haven't ever used an open source IDE, as there are some which are perfectly competitive with Visual Studio (Netbeans, QT creator).

    • by gweihir (88907)

      No. What it tells is that there are some FOSS developers that like Visual Studio, and they are now complaining loudly and publicly. The others are just not concerned and rightfully so. There is no basis for any quantitative evaluation.

      Personally, I do not get the whole IDE thing. I started out with IDEs and tried new ones from time to time. I find them to stand in my way once I have a certain skill-level with the respective language. By now I believe IDEs are mainly a crutch for the semi-competent and do ac

    • Re:Wait, what now? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Miamicanes (730264) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @12:59AM (#40118155)

      Windows developers have almost the exact same problem as Android developers. There's exactly one officially-blessed IDE, and just about every book, blog, howto, and forum post assumes you're using it.

      NBandroid is a noble project that many people work hard maintaining. Unfortunately, it gets zero love from Google, and as a result, support for the latest and greatest Android SDK tends to arrive about a month or two after one of its developers gets a new phone that uses it. Like Eclipse, it has some bugs. Truthfully, most of them are minor... IF you've completely mastered Netbeans, Eclipse, Android development, and the use of build scripts. Otherwise, it'll probably stop you dead in your tracks, with little hope of moving forward any time soon unless you throw in the towel, move everything over to Eclipse, and hope that the situation improves for your next Android project.

      The story with Windows is more or less the same. If you have a problem building a C# program under VS10, you can find four hundred resources online to help troubleshoot it in 18 seconds with Google. Have a similar problem with something like SharpDevelop, Eclipse, Netbeans, or another non-VS IDE, and you'll probably be looking for the answer for quite a while.

      It's even worse if your native language isn't English. Visual Studio is so pervasive worldwide, even people who speak regional languages can find abundant help in their own language. There might even be one or more entire BOOKS about Visual Studio in it. Deviate from Microsoft's chosen path, and you'd better be fluent in English. OK, I'm exaggerating a little... lots of the independent IDEs are written by authors in non-English-speaking countries, and provide support in their own language as well.

      At one time, I would have been optimistic and said that Microsoft's future lack of free support might encourage more progress with free alternatives. Three years of Android development have disillusioned me. NBandroid has come a long way and made enormous amounts of progress, but thanks to Google's total contempt for Netbeans, it still ends up holding *me* back whenever I try using it, and there's no way in hell I could recommend it to somebody who's learning Android programming for the first time. And we're talking about a Java development ecosystem that has historically had only TWO viable free IDEs, both of which were widely viewed as the two best IDEs available, period. Compare that to Windows, where NONE of the alternatives has market share that would count as "sloppy seconds" compared to the overwhelming dominance of Visual Studio, and all of which have real drawbacks and disadvantages compared to Visual Studio.

      At the end of the day, Visual Studio is kind of like a 97 year old benevolent dictator of a prosperous country who's been ruling since he was a teenager -- people might have complaints, especially if he starts getting senile in his old age... but he's been the only government anybody in that country has ever known, and not even his fiercest opponents can really see themselves taking his place, because over the past 80-odd years, he's basically become synonymous with the country, its government, and the cultural identity of the people who live there. With the possible exception of Commodore 64 BASIC, it's hard to think of any development environment that's been more dominant and pervasive within its platform than Visual Studio within its platform and era.

    • Metro is bullshit, and trying to shove a tablet interface down the throats of every desktop user is just going to make MS hated more. What in the HELL is Marketing thinking?
  • by SpryGuy (206254) on Friday May 25, 2012 @10:57PM (#40117319)

    This is really stupid. I mean, I understand the (stupid) reasoning behind it, given the direction they want to go... but it's just shooting themselves in the foot.

    At least VS2010 Express will still be available, but still... this is going to burn a LOT of good-will (such as it is) with Windows developers.

    • by CAKAS (2646219)
      Then use one of the THOUSAND other IDE's available? You know, Borland (now CodeGear), AMD's, CERN's, Intel C++ compiler, IBM.. Hell, use GCC! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_compilers#C.2B.2B_compilers [wikipedia.org]
      • by game kid (805301)

        Of course there are other IDEs, for which I and others will be grateful. The point is that Microsoft went from mildly sane to Full Retard in the span of one OS release. VS 2010 Express (especially when combined with a Platform SDK) was quite useful for making what they now call "classic apps". Now we have to pay in, or sanction M(isadv)e(n)tro.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by CAKAS (2646219)
          Visual Studio has been paid product for most its lifetime. The few recent versions had the free "express" edition mostly suited towards students and new programmers. No one that actually does serious development work uses it - it's just there to try things out, just like demo versions of games. Yet, they still offer free version to make Metro apps - again useful for new programmers. But if you do serious work, you will get the full version, just like you always have.
          • Express editions were also very useful for F/OSS folk who often do development primarily on Linux (or, these days, also OS X), but want a Windows port - VC++ 2010 Express is full featured enough to compile anything you throw at it, and to create project files and other similar stuff to publish for others (the "serious work" guys with VS Ultimate who want to use that F/OSS library) to easily integrate into their project.

    • by deniable (76198) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:06PM (#40117407)
      This isn't a dumb decision at all. It's the consequence of a dumb decision. VS Express was put out to get people to switch to .NET development. Now that they're trying to shift from .NET to WinRT or whatever it's called this week, the tools aren't needed any more but the WinRT versions are. Look further down the stack and this change makes sense in a Microsoft way.
      • Your comment would make more sense if you'd realize that WinRT does not subsume .NET - indeed, .NET is one of the three frameworks/toolchains available to target WinRT (the other two being C++ and HTML5/JS).

  • Pfeh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Svartalf (2997) on Friday May 25, 2012 @10:58PM (#40117331) Homepage

    It's worth noting that there's enough toolchains that are perfectly capable of producing desktop applications in that are Free (in both senses) that're capable of producing quality results.

    Quite simply, if they're willing to cut their own throats in this space this way...let 'em.

  • Oh come on (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MrEricSir (398214) on Friday May 25, 2012 @10:59PM (#40117341) Homepage

    No matter how you read this, the headline is completely misleading. There are other compilers/IDEs for Windows that cost $0. And the term "free" can mean two things on Slashdot; this headline makes it sound like Microsoft is trying to kill FOSS.

    • by peppepz (1311345)

      makes it sound like Microsoft is trying to kill FOSS

      Which is exactly what they've been doing during all their history. FOSS developers can either be aware of this, stay away from them and be happy, or they can trust them every time they promise again that they've changed, that now they've embraced openness etc., and then get screwed by them once again when they show their true nature with moves such as this one.

  • by NemoinSpace (1118137) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:01PM (#40117359) Homepage Journal
    MS quipped. "you're free not to use it".
  • Just because I can't write c# console apps doesn't mean I can't write console apps...

    • by deniable (76198)
      Just download the MS SDK. It's been free for years and includes the compiler et al. It's only the pretty IDEs that are a problem.
  • There isnt a week where I dont come upon a story like this and laugh out loud. Its a shame too as Win 8 has nice features.

    It was just Metro and now the lack of media player outside ultimate, no gui with aero in desktop mode, and now this?! What the hell are they going to fuck uo next?

    There are work arounds like win7start and the intel compilers and eclipse (sucks to use phenom), but buying a machine with win 7 instead is a lot less hassle.

    XP was bashed here on slashdot for years and then came Vista. Now the

  • by hydrofix (1253498) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:19PM (#40117509)
    It seems like with this move and generally the Metro and Windows 8 walled garden stuff, Microsoft is going more and more "the Apple way". Is it really in their best interest? Is it just me, or hasn't the open-ish (compared to Apple) Intel + Microsoft Windows ecosystem served a desktop market niche that is different from the Apple universe? Does Microsoft have an exit strategy in case they fail in closer competition with Apple at Apple's game?
    • by BenJeremy (181303) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:50PM (#40117743)

      It seems like with this move and generally the Metro and Windows 8 walled garden stuff, Microsoft is going more and more "the Apple way". Is it really in their best interest? Is it just me, or hasn't the open-ish (compared to Apple) Intel + Microsoft Windows ecosystem served a desktop market niche that is different from the Apple universe? Does Microsoft have an exit strategy in case they fail in closer competition with Apple at Apple's game?

      I wish I had mod points today....

      This nails the point EXACTLY.

      Microsoft is in such a rush to try and capture their own share of the mobile market and stay relevant, they are dumping 30 years of solid R&D in desktop user interfaces for an unintuitive tablet-centric UI, and in an effort to drive developers into the walled garden, they are now enforcing Metro development with their free tools.

      The short-sighted idiots driving this nonsense at Microsoft are forsaking the desktop world with this move, though. As bad as we thought Vista was, it still sold well enough (tied to new systems) - but the user furor over Windows 8 will make the Vista flap seem like a blip in comparison. It's a wrong-headed approach to try and shove the genie back into the bottle, Microsoft... and worse, trying to do it by creating a hybrid UI that does no specific job particularly well for users of either environment. Compromises that sacrifice millions of dollars of very good research into user interfaces will end up costing you far more in the long run. ....and if consumers will be rebelling against Windows 8, what do you think will happen in the enterprise world? It's just starting to deploy Windows 7 desktops, warily approaching it after the nightmare that was Vista. Windows 8 demands retraining that will cost some organizations MILLIONS to implement. The introduction of Metro will also likely introduce a whole new firestorm of exploits for IT admins to face.

      Congrats, Microsoft, for turning into a dumbass company overnight.

      Do yourselves a big favor, Microsoft.... dump everybody in the company who thought Win8 Metro was a good decision for the desktop. FIRE THEM, and scrap the launch before it's too late. Pretend it never happened and begin working on Win9 with a Start Button and the improvements users WANT (like a new file system, for example, DLNA that works, improved stability and app fault recovery), instead of forcing limitations and touchscreen UIs down their throats.

  • by FranTaylor (164577) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:23PM (#40117559)

    Why not write in Qt for Windows? It's certainly pleasant to work with, and you get Linux and OSX ports basically for free.

  • by jkrise (535370) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:25PM (#40117577) Journal

    Get Lost, Get Lost, Get Lost.

    Enuff said. The desktop is the only saving grace for Microsoft, let alone Windows. Talk about killing the golden goose.

  • ...to laugh silently and sombrely at this comment [slashdot.org] from only three weeks ago, which is now tragically and frustratingly wrong.
    • by BenJeremy (181303)

      Hmmm... yet from what I see on the Windows SDK features page:

      Visual C++ 2010 Compilers and C Runtime (CRT)

      "The new Windows compilers and CRT for the x86, x64, and Itanium (IA64) operating systems are included in the Windows SDK and integrated into its command-line build environment. These compilers and CRT are the same as those that are included in Visual Studio 2010."

      According to their own feature page, the compilers are included in the SDK. /Have MSDN Sub, but won't be worrying about Win8 development for

  • by JDG1980 (2438906) on Friday May 25, 2012 @11:27PM (#40117589)

    Microsoft is so consumed with "Apple envy" that they seem to have forgotten what their bread and butter is: the business desktop. They are so obsessed with being a competitor in the tablet market that they are making a product that actively hurts their core demographic.

    Why do people use Windows? Legacy support is a BIG reason – and yet Microsoft under Ballmer seems dedicated to trying to kill it as quickly as possible. Guess what? If legacy support goes away, so does a large part of the reason for people not switching to another OS! After all, if they have to rewrite everything anyway... Ballmer once understood that "developers, developers, developers" were what made Microsoft's platform dominate; now he seems to be going for tablet/smartphone-using hipsters and tweens, and giving developers the middle finger.

  • A lot of people still use laptops and desktops. Microsoft is throwing away that market to be in also ran far behind iPhone and Android. Microsoft should focus on doing what they do best. Instead they are scaring Windows customers and Windows developers into leaving the PC platform. Poorly played, Microsoft.

    Even if older versions of Visual Studio can be used, they are notorious for breaking under new OSs. VS2003 won't work on Vista or Windows 7. VS2005/2008 is slower, and VS2010 doesn't support global directories so you must enter your search paths manually into every single library, making porting time consuming and tedious. What Microsoft are doing here is saying if you don't want to develop METRO apps, then it's time to leave the Windows platform.
    • In addition, the desktop is likely to be the high profit margin market in the future. CAD/CAE, publishing, software development graphic design, etc, and most office work will still need large screens. The mobile market could easily turn into a race to the bottom. I'm surprised that MS wants to be there.

  • by goruka (1721094) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @01:27AM (#40118313)
    For C++ development, ease of use, portability and tools, Qt Creator is both a lightweight and feature packed IDE. It has about the same feature set as Visual Studio and similar usage, plus it's much easier to use and configure for custom build systems. It can be used with both MSVC compiler and Mingw. It's well mantained and has some killer features such as the locator. As a plus, it works identically everywhere, so I can get my favorite development environment no matter if i'm at work (Windows), at home (Linux) or on my laptop (OSX).
    In my view, the biggest problem it has is it's name, "Qt-Creator", which i wish developers would change. Even if Qt is hands down the best library and toolit i've ever used for mobile and desktop development, it works perfectly fine for non Qt related development too, so plenty of developers writing non-Qt are missing the best opensource C++ IDE.
  • by allo (1728082) on Saturday May 26, 2012 @09:49AM (#40120451)

    Free is not about the price, but about the freedom. And there are other compilers than the microsoft one.

I bet the human brain is a kludge. -- Marvin Minsky

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