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What's your opinion.NET?

.NET has been around for about a year now and from the beginning our company has thought about the advantages that .NET has to offer.

We have been reluctant to make a big jump to it for a few reasons:

We're worried that the platform will fail.
We don't have any idea on what percentage of people have it yet.
We haven't seen anything that runs on it yet.
We're worried about the number of Win95 users still in existence.
We don't know how IT departments will react to a new software requiring it.
We don't know how well ports like the Mono project will catch on in the Linux world, considering the strong anti-MS sentiment.

We are developing a small scale application that we will distribute as a free beta in which we hope to guage our own users' reactions to installing the .NET framework.


I'd like to hear some opinions on some of the issues I've named.

(Please refrain from .NET/MS bashing, and post useful comments only)

Walt
Monday, March 10, 2003

My experience has been that the largest applications being developed with .NET are web-based corporate applications.

I've been involved in a number of ASP.NET projects for my clients. Here and there, we might have to develop a .NET Windows application, but it's been rare.

As you said, getting people to install the .NET Framework is going to be tricky. (Of course, look to see it in future Windows updates) So for now, most of the development seems to be on the server side.

I don't see .NET failing. Although not all MS developers are nuts about it, it has been generally well accepted. The thought of having to code another VB 6.0 application gives me the chills.

I wouldn't hold my breath for Project Mono or any of the other .NET ports to bring anything earth-shattering to the table. I greatly admire what they are trying to do, but I just don't have much faith that they will be able to break free from the gravitational pull of MS.

Go Linux Go!
Monday, March 10, 2003

"We haven't seen anything that runs on it yet."

http://www.asp.net/
Check out the IBuySpy portal, the discussion group, and the store - all asp.net applications. They are also open-source frameworks for creating your own distributable applications. I've worked with the portal and it's a very, very nice architecture.

Agreed with the sentiment about going back - I'd quit before I code another plain vanilla ASP application.

Philo

Philo
Monday, March 10, 2003

Per Google, only 3% of users accessing it were using Win 95: http://www.google.com/press/zeitgeist.html

Nick H
Monday, March 10, 2003

I haven't seen dotnet in action for large, N-tier projects, but ASPX is just plain easy to use for medium size projects.  I'd personally want to use it for just about anything but really large projecrts, and only because I haven't seen it done.  (J2EE seems to have the really big projects down).

Vincent Marquez
Monday, March 10, 2003

Our software is commonly installed in departments where often is the case that the IT people in control of the network are software Nazis.  In the past our customers have had to call us with ridiculous questions like:

"What shared components will be installed?"
"How does your quality control system work?"
"Is the software ISO 9000 certified?" (if you can believe that!)

We wonder if these types will be opposed to the .NET framework being installed by our application(s).

Walt
Monday, March 10, 2003

Heres an example of an Open Source, non-MS C# and VB.Net IDE and Compiler: http://www.icsharpcode.net/OpenSource/SD/Default.aspx

I've downloaded and installed this program and it works great.  Also, since you can get the source this would be a good program for you to look at.

Wayne
Monday, March 10, 2003

"We wonder if these types will be opposed to the .NET framework being installed by our application(s)."

Going through this right now, and the answer is "yes"

However, the same group that is fighting deployment of the .Net framework is currently gleefully deploying the latest IE6 update, which I think is all of a month old.

So - .Net framework: field reports are that it's painless and hasn't broken anything as a side effect of installation.
IE: Long, troubled history of randomly breaking applications and operating systems.

Yet IE gets the nod. Gotcha.

Philo

Philo
Monday, March 10, 2003

I would not be worried about the # of win 95 users out there.  Most people who are still on windows 95 are either poor or they do not see the need to upgrade and therefore I don't think they will be looking for new software anytime soon.

RRKSS
Monday, March 10, 2003

Two polls on www.programmersheaven.com about .NET:
* http://www.programmersheaven.com/c/userpoll/Poll_archive.htm?PollID=1
* http://www.programmersheaven.com/c/userpoll/Poll_archive.htm?PollID=10

No comments!

Dieter
Monday, March 10, 2003

RRKSS -- I have to disagree. We get tens of thousands of downloads of our software from Win95 users.

Troy King
Monday, March 10, 2003

Likely the 95 holdouts have seen no value in continuing on the MS treadmill and will likely go Mac or Linux when they buy another PC

Mike
Monday, March 10, 2003

My company has released one small application so far using .net and it has been one of the most painless and reliable releases we've ever done.  Only complaint was that it didn't do things they hadn't specified...

We have a number of internal tools written in C# and I am currently re-writing from the ground up the new version of our main product also in C#.  The customer will see nothing but benefits from this, and now people have faster connections it won't be a problem adding 16Mb to the install to include the framework, the customer will just click setup and it will all go in, framework included.

Once you have been working in C# for a while though, the thought of going back to C++ and MFC will make you feel really unwell !

David
Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Our software allows marketing departments to author and distribute surveys.

We have no problem telling our customers to upgrade from Win95.

The problem we face there is that a Win95 user might get a survey on a disk through the mail, and he won't be able to run it.

That either forces us to retain a unmanaged module with the rest of it (and thus having two codebases doing the same thing, which is bad), or we must force them to an ASP.NET page on the web, which isn't ideal either.

Walt
Tuesday, March 11, 2003

I subcontract for a large Government contractor and they have started using .Net within their projects on a test basis. Basically this means that a few projects will be the test bed for future projects. But with MS fully behind them with full support, including access to the .Net developers, I think it has a future here. And this is a company which has fully embraced J2EE in the past and will continue to do so because it still makes sense, while still moving forward with .Net.  So it is showing up within the US government.

Ian Stallings
Tuesday, March 11, 2003

1

2
Tuesday, March 11, 2003

"Our software is commonly installed in departments where often is the case that the IT people in control of the network are software Nazis.  In the past our customers have had to call us with ridiculous questions like:

"What shared components will be installed?"
"How does your quality control system work?"
"Is the software ISO 9000 certified?" (if you can believe that!)"

If you knew how many vendors produce crappy software you'd slap yourself for saying that, well except for the ISO 9000 bit.

Currently I'm fighting a battle about _everything_ requiring a SQL database.  I don't mind the apps needing the database, but I'll be damned if some vendor is going to be installing his poorly thought out, bug ridden software with access to a production server.

And management is damned if they'll shell out the money for another server beefy enough to handle the test load of all these apps that specify access to a SQL DB.

We're at an impasse right now, but the production databases are still running fine.

Once bitten, twice shy.

Steve Barbour
Wednesday, March 12, 2003

[(Please refrain from .NET/MS bashing, and post useful comments only)]

Walt, you take the fun out of everything :-) Bashing MS is a staple of a troll's life. It's like the sun in the morning or a fresh cup of coffee. No day can be complete without a good poke at MS.

But I admit that MS bashing is merely a level one troll that any troll could easily do, even a novice. It's easy to a quick shot at the Mecca of unsecure software. But it is only the first step on the road to troll Nirvana.

trollbooth
Wednesday, March 12, 2003

trollbooth: we know you're only trying to look clever, but you could at least write your trolls by hand rather than use a random crap generator.

twotbox
Friday, March 21, 2003

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