When a developer working with a development platform, it is normal that you are interested the news related to this platform. After a while, it is easy to see and filter the correct sources of information which provides news that really are relevant on this platform.
The Microsoft Connect() event was 5 days ago, and now you can read about it with differents approach. For any MS developer, it is the very best of the best that happened in recent years. Not so for tools and news, but for the complete change of philosophy in Microsoft. What a few years ago began as “we are a service-oriented company” now is complemented by the best suite of development tools, service-oriented also.
And of course, these services may (or may not) be based on Microsoft technologies. So the new Visual Studio 2015 now provides support for development in Android native, is opened in Open Source mode > .net platform, and a great movement (service-oriented): a new flavor of Visual Studio named Community which is 100% free and has many similarities with the current professional version.
Until today, Microsoft free development tools were known as the Visual Studio Express family. It was not a single tool, for each platform or language there was a standalone version of Visual Studio Express. One of the main disadvantages of these versions, was that they were completely limited on its functionality. I.e., it was impossible to create extensions for them. Hence the use of them was limited and that they were not “popular”.
Visual Studio Community is a turn of 180 ° on this. In example, as a developer, with this version we will get:
-Support for C++ and .net compilers (C# and VB.Net of course)
-Editing and debugging code with all the advantages we already know Visual Studio. This implies nice additions as for example Code Analysis
-On other platforms development, it provides support for web apps, Android, iOS, Windows Phone. In addition to Visual Studio Tools for Apache Cordova.
-Support for GIT (99% of happy people)
Although the main advantage that has the Community version is that it supports plugins! This means all available extensions in Visual Studio Gallery in a free IDE.
A simple exercise to make is to put together one of the best plug-ins for Visual Studio 2013 with this version
-Visual Studio 2013 Community, €0
-ReSharper, €143 (link)
And you got it, for less than the price of a decent Android or a low-cost Nokia phone, you’ll have the best of the best in a development environment.
If you want to know more details about this version, you can see it on their official website here (link).
Update: As well mentioned Jose Antonio in a comment, I have forgotten to mention that this version is free for independent Developers or teams up to 5 people in large organizations. Is also an exception if used in Open Source projects, more information here (link)
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