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Microsoft .NET framework now open source and cross platform

01 Dec 2014

Microsoft has announced the .NET server stack will be open source and cross platform. The full .NET server stack will be provided in full, and developers will be able to build with .NET across Windows, Mac or Linux.

On top of this, the Visual Studio 2015 Preview and .NET 2015 Preview have been released.

To further support cross-platform mobile development with .NET, Microsoft and Xamarin announced a streamlined experience for installing Xamarin from Visual Studio as well as the addition of Visual Studio support as part of the free Xamarin Starter Edition.

Furthermore, Microsoft delivered the final release of Apache Cordova tools, for developers who want to build cloud powered apps for mobile devices.

These announcements reflect Microsoft’s focus on being a mobile-first, cloud-first company, says Nigel Parker, Microsoft, New Zealand, director developer experience.

He says the suite of new products and services make cloud enabled mobile and cross platform development easier using .NET.

“Locally, our developer community is especially excited by the ability to build native open source Android and iOS apps for free by integrating Xamarin’s Starter edition cross-platform development tools with Visual Studio Community 2013,” says Parker.

“With billions of devices in the market today, developers need tools that target many different form factors and platforms,” say S. Somasegar, Microsoft, corporate vice president, Developer Division.

“Through Visual Studio and .NET we are committed to delivering a comprehensive end-to-end solution for developers to build and manage applications across multiple devices and platforms,” he says.

Jeremy Boyd, Mindscape, director, says retaining a familiar language, framework and set of tools while also enabling .NET developers to target multiple platforms brings huge productivity gain.

“We deploy to multiple platforms for Raygun.io so for us being able to target a reliable high performance cross platform runtime is really exciting news,” says Boyd.

The announcement brings .NET and Microsoft’s development stack to Github, where the developer community is already collaborating using open source tools and software, says Keith Patton, Marker Metro, CEO.

Patton says this will make it easier and more efficient to build Windows apps, often at the same time as iOS/Android.

He says, “The improvements in Mono for tools like Xamarin will be enormously helpful, and the tooling support in Visual Studio for Android and cross platform web development are a big leap forward for Visual Studio itself.”

Brian McCallister, Groupon, chief technology officer, says, “A strong, open source, cross-platform CLR opens significant new options for building large server-based systems. This significantly expands the choices developers have when finding the right tool to solve their problem."

Microsoft says through the implementation the team will work closely with the open source community, taking contributions and future improvements to .NET and work through the .NET Foundation.

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