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by Peter Galli on February 15, 2010 11:00am
As adoption and usage surges for Live@Edu, Microsoft's free communication and collaboration solution that educational institutions can offer their students, I wanted to provide an update in that regard.
You may remember that the Live Services Plug-in for Moodle, a free download released under the General Public License v2 that integrates Microsoft's Live@Edu services such as email, calendar, instant messaging and search directly into the Moodle experience, was released at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention last year.
This integrated experience is accessible via a single sign-on, which lets teachers and students access the resources and services they need to efficiently communicate, collaborate and learn, while the platform is interoperable with different open source and commercial software platforms.
Currently, millions of students in Latin America, across Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru, are already taking advantage of Live@Edu, which is available in every country within the region. It is a free solution which includes services such as e-mail, instant messaging, calendar, collaborative work areas and storage as an institutional service identified by the institution's logo and its registered domain.
Take the Universidad Nacional de San Marcos de Perú which has more than 40,000 students, 5,000 teachers and almost 2,000 new students every semester. It has, thanks to Live@Edu, managed to overcome problems with its e-mail accounts caused by the acceleration in the number of students. Thanks to the interoperability and support which the Microsoft solution offers, the University has managed to integrate its open code applications with this new platform at a minimal cost.
The importance of this initiative is underscored by the comments from Luis Fernando Izquierdo Vásquez, the president of that University, who notes that the alliance with Microsoft will "bring every teacher and student closer to our institution, offering them a series of tools to help generate knowledge and thereby improve the educational preparation that we offer our students."
"Institutions need flexible technological solutions to meet the range of needs of their students and teachers, which is why our products connect easily with other systems and offer wide ranging and secure access to the educational resources that their teachers and students need, when they need them, wherever they are and from whatever device they are using," Alvaro Morón, the Director of Live@Edu for Microsoft Latin America, notes.
This initiative also underscores how Microsoft responds to the needs of governments and reaffirms its commitment to education. The company works with local governments, non-governmental organizations and educational institutions to offer interoperable solutions necessary for young people, with the necessary technical requirements and requiring the lowest investment possible from governments and institutions.
"We understand that a student's success is an institution's main priority and we are committed to supporting this. We help them attain their goals by offering a range of tailor made tools which allow students and teachers to discover, create and use relevant content for personalized learning," Morón said.
Other universities which have chosen Live@Edu
Elementary and Junior High schools that have adopted the solution include Colegio Fontán and Marymount in Colombia, and Colegio Menor San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador.
by Peter Galli on February 01, 2010 09:48am
Great news about the .Net Micro Framework, which Microsoft announced in November was being open sourced and made available under the Apache 2.0 license. The community development site has just been launched, which is focused on supporting the collaborative development of the Framework.
"This site is designed to be open just like our product is. There are lots of ways that you can use this site directly. I am hoping that this becomes the focus of a lively community interchange on the platform so give it a try. As always, your ideas and suggestions on how we can make the site more useful to you are appreciated," says Product Unit Manager Colin Miller.
Development work on a core implementation of the .Net Micro Framework will continue both at Microsoft and in conjunction with the larger .Net Micro Framework community. So far, a core tech team of volunteers from inside and outside Microsoft has been identified, which will work in specific areas to refine and direct project proposals and get them developed and accepted into the core code base.
In addition to the features to be incorporated into the core codebase, there are other extensions and add-ons to the platform that people have made and will continue to make: some of which are free, while others are for sale.
The community web site includes a Showcase that allows the creators of all these extensions, as well as services, to be listed by their creators and found by users. If you have an extension, you can list it yourself on the site.
"As we found out with the Dare to Dream Different contest, held to see what cool ideas people could come up with a standard hardware reference board using the .Net Micro Framework, there are lots of great individual projects that people have created with the .Net Micro Framework. There is an Academic/Hobbyist discussion group where people can discuss their cool projects. There is a discussion group on the web site for proposing and discussing projects. Let's start the ideas rolling - what did you always want to see in the product? Who can you enlist to get it in?" Miller says.
The advantage of the .Net Micro Framework is that it allows Microsoft to offer a single programming model and toolchain from small peripheral devices to the server and on to the cloud. It is a platform that allows current .Net programmers to extend their reach into small devices.
"At PDC I spoke with a programmer who was very excited about the Micro Framework because his company had just turned down a project which they could do almost all of, but which included a requirement for a small, power efficient device. With the Micro Framework, he would not have to turn down that work again," Miller says.
by Peter Galli on January 28, 2010 05:12pm
Zend Technologies today released the Zend Framework 1.10, the latest version of its open source PHP web application framework, which includes support for Windows Azure cloud services - a project that was started last year when Microsoft announced the Windows Azure SDK for PHP CTP release and upcoming support in Zend Framework.
Developers can now use the new Zend_Service_WindowsAzure component contributed by Microsoft to the Zend Framework open source project, to easily call Windows Azure APIs from their PHP applications to accelerate web application development and scale up on demand.
Zend_Service_WindowsAzure provides interfaces for all Windows Azure storage services, including Blob Storage, Table Storage and Queue Service. These services enable persistent, redundant storage in the cloud.
Zeev Suraski, the Chief Technology Officer and Co-founder of Zend, believes that the ubiquity, simplicity and flexibility of PHP make it ideal for building cloud applications. "Native Windows Azure support in Zend Framework 1.10 brings the power of Windows Azure to a substantial community of Zend Framework users," he said in a press statement.
For his part, Jean Paoli, the General Manager for Interoperability at Microsoft, says that Microsoft’s decision to contribute PHP-based Windows Azure components to Zend Framework helps demonstrate the company's commitment to openness and interoperability by providing greater choice and opportunity for Microsoft customers and partners.
This news also means that PHP developers now have great choice when it comes to writing web applications targeting Windows Azure. As Vijay Rajagopalan, a Principal Architect at Microsoft notes in his blog on the news, besides the Windows Azure SDK included in Zend Framework, there is the Windows Azure SDK for PHP which is already prepackaged in Windows Azure tools for Eclipse and the simpler Simple Cloud API.
All of this is also particularly well aligned with the Windows Azure Interoperability approach, as well as to Microsoft's overall interoperability effort around PHP.
The Zend Framework 1.10 can be downloaded here.
by Peter Galli on January 23, 2010 08:00am
The CodePlex team announced last night that it now supports Mercurial, a distributed source control management system. New projects created on CodePlex.com will now be able to use either Team Foundation Server or Mercurial as the source control repository.
Current project owners who want to switch to Mercurial can do so by contacting CodePlex Support with the project name, and the team will gladly assist.
Mercurial is a Distributed Version Control System (DVCS) and, unlike Team Foundation Server, DVCS has a very different model for collaborating on an open source project:
So, why the need for another option? According to Sara Ford, the Program Manager for CodePlex, adding DVCS to CodePlex has become a top feature request from users as the popularity of DVCS for open source development has grown significantly.
"Mercurial is one of the most popular distributed version control systems and offers great support for Windows based tools as well as works very well as a hosted service," she says.
by saraford on January 20, 2010 01:29pm
In my previous post, I discussed how "not designing the full 100 percent is a true blessing in disguise" that enables Course Correction in an Agile team. In this post, you'll learn how the CodePlex team puts Agile to work in developing the CodePlex software.
Putting It All Together: How We Build the CodePlex Software
On CodePlex.com, we deploy every three weeks using five week deployment cycles, as shown below. We spend approximately two weeks of new feature work, with one week of bug fixing/ course correction/ adding more work. Next, we cut the Release Candidate (RC), where we fork the code, so the test team can start the full test pass (regression testing) on the RC bits, and the devs can start new feature work on the "Main" code branch. If we find bugs in the RC, we fix both the RC branch and the Main branch.
Besides our three week deployments, the biggest advantage of Agile to me, as the Program Manager, is that we all sit in one team room, with the idea being that the most effective means of communication is key. Got a question? Ask the room. Never be blocked due to communication.
As shown below, all the devs sit together at the pairing stations (to the right), and over on the left is where the test team sits. A few months after taking this photo, I changed seats with the development lead so that I could face the corner. I'm a very visual person, so sitting in the corner is less distracting for me. Just like our feature designs, we even apply the "course correction" concept to our own internal processes, like making this desk change tweak.
While, for our internal processes, we're using a variation of Extreme Programming (XP), we are following the XP process about 90 percent of the way. Other agile aspects include:
If I could go back in time, this post on my personal blog is what I wished I could have told myself about Agile development on my first day on the CodePlex team. Of course, I realize that every Agile team is different, and the concept of Agile itself has its own challenges, just like any other software engineering methodology.
It is my hope that if you are on an Agile team outside of the development role, these series of blog posts has helped you in some way. I hope that, at least, you've learned that you are not alone in figuring out what agile means to the non-developer disciplines.
by Jialiang on January 18, 2010 12:33pm
Are you looking for good and well documented working code samples of Microsoft development technologies? Well, if you are, the Microsoft Community Support team has prepared an all-in-one code framework for you, which is easy to learn and use - the essence of development.
The All-In-One Code Framework, which is licensed under the OSI-approved MS-PL, delineates the framework and skeleton of almost all Microsoft development techniques through typical sample codes in three popular programming languages:Visual C#, VB.NET, Visual C++.
Each sample is selected, composed, and documented to demonstrate a coding scenario that is frequently-asked for, tested, or used, based on the community team's customer support experience in MSDN newsgroups and forums.
There are already over 300 code samples in the set. They cover 24 Microsoft development technologies, including Silverlight, Windows Forms, and WPF. The collection is growing at a rate of some six samples a week.
You can find the up-to-date list of samples in All-In-One Code Framework Sample Catalog, or follow the project on Twitter.
For example, here is the layout of code samples for the Microsoft Component Object Model (COM) technology:
Here is what you get in the Silverlight download for September:
This sample code project has the following unique features:
Besides these unique features, the code examples in the All-In-One Code Framework are typical, extensible, structured, complete, well-documented, and easy to understand.
If you have any feedback on the project or questions about its samples, please post them on the project Discussion board, or via the project feedback address.
More information about All-In-One Code Framework can also be found at the following resources:
All-In-One Code Framework Homepage and Download
Project blogs on MSDN
All-In-One Code Framework KB articles
All-In-One Code Framework Twitter
by Peter Galli on January 14, 2010 01:16pm
The Canadian City of Edmonton has become the first North American city to use Microsoft's Open Government Data Initiative (OGDI) solution, and is working with the company to develop the region's first public open data catalogue, an online site that will give citizens and developers easier and more transparent access to information and allow them to develop new solutions and suggest ideas that enhance public infrastructure and services.
The solution for the City of Edmonton uses open source components along with Windows Azure, Microsoft's cloud operating system, and was quickly implemented at a low cost. The use of open standards and application programming interfaces lets local developers and City IT staff easily retrieve data for use in new and innovative online applications or mashups that can help improve citizen services, enhance collaboration between the City and private organizations, and increase City transparency.
According to Chris Moore, the CIO of the City of Edmonton, the open data catalogue underscores its commitment to enhancing engagement and collaboration with the citizens and community developers of Edmonton. "By moving to a more open model and working with Microsoft, we hope to harness the talent and innovation that resides locally to drive Edmonton forward," he said in a press statement.
John Weigelt, the National Technology Officer for Microsoft Canada, is also upbeat about the positive effects of cloud computing on cost and complexity. "OGDI-based solutions not only provide easy access to government data, but also demonstrate how cloud computing can help significantly reduce the cost, complexity and time to market for solutions that consume the data. Citizens and community developers will now be able to help solve the business needs of the City of Edmonton, resulting in new solutions in a very short amount of time," he said in the press statement.
Microsoft announced the OGDI initiative in May 2009, with the goal of reducing the cost of publishing government data while simplifying data access by leveraging cloud computing and open standards, which is exactly what has been achieved with Edmonton. More information on OGDI can be found here.
by Peter Galli on December 18, 2009 01:24pm
In case you missed this, Moonlight 2 is now available.
Moonlight is the open source Linux implementation of Silverlight, which was first announced by Microsoft and Novell in September of 2007.
Moonlight is the only open source project that provides Linux users access to Silverlight content, and Microsoft has provided Novell with access to its test suites for Silverlight as well as giving Linux end-users of Moonlight free access to the Microsoft Media Pack, a set of licensed media codecs for video and audio, the Silverlight team said in a blog post.
Microsoft and Novell also announced yesterday that they are expanding their collaboration on Moonlight to include support for Moonlight implementations of Silverlight 3 and Silverlight 4, which will see Microsoft deliver new test suites and specifications for Silverlight 3 and 4 to Novell.
A preview release of Moonlight 3 will be made available in the first quarter of 2010, with a final release scheduled for the third quarter of 2010. Moonlight 4 is expected to follow shortly thereafter.
In response to feedback from the community, Microsoft has also extended its Patent Covenant to End Users of Moonlight, which means that the covenant is no longer limited to users who get Moonlight from Novell or its channel, but now also covers users who obtain Moonlight from any third party, including other Linux distributors.
Microsoft and Novell also collaborated earlier this year to ensure that Linux users were able to watch the Barack Obama Official Inauguration stream with Moonlight.
by Peter Galli on December 09, 2009 12:02pm
I am very pleased to announce that Microsoft today released the Open Sourced Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool (WUDT) under the GPLv2.
As we previously explained, the testing and localization took longer than we expected, but the project is now hosted on CodePlex.com, Microsoft's Open Source software project hosting repository, and the code can be found here.
The tool can also now be downloaded from the Microsoft Store here.
Also, as a result of some necessary changes, while the user experience of the tool will be the same as before, the install involves additional steps.
Originally, for the convenience of customers, we aggregated together additional files, which are separate freestanding executables:
(a) .NET Framework
WUDT is written in C# which requires the Microsoft .NET Framework to run.
The tool uses IMAPI to burn DVDs.
This is part of the Windows 7 bits (found in \boot\bootsect.exe) and allows a USB device to be marked as bootable.
It is important to note that these files were not linked with the original WUDT in a programmatic sense but, instead, were launched via a command line. We have now separated these files for clarity as they are separate programs under different licensing terms.
The new release will provide full instructions for customers on how to install .NETfx and IMAPI prior to installing WUDT. Bootsect.exe will be part of the Windows 7 ISO download on the Microsoft Store.
Once again, we appreciate your patience.
by Peter Galli on November 20, 2009 02:42pm
As you know, Microsoft recently committed to making the source code as well as binaries for the Windows 7 USB/DVD Tool available this week, under the terms of the General Public License v2 as described here.
While we worked extremely hard to try and get the code ready for release by today, we still need to test and localize it. Our goal is now to release the tool in all languages on the same day in the next few weeks.
We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work to make the Windows 7 USB/DVD Tool available once again.
by Peter Galli on November 19, 2009 06:40pm
The Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) team announced today the release of Windows Cache Extension 1.0 for PHP, a PHP accelerator that is used to increase the speed of PHP applications running on Windows and Windows Server. This is a production-ready release that is provided under an open source BSD license, with the source code hosted and maintained here, and the documentation hosted on php.net. You can find more details on this release on IIS team Product Unit Manager Mai-lan Tomsen Bukovec's blog. WinCache extension is a significant open source contribution from Microsoft to the PHP on Windows community. The extension code is hosted and maintained on PHP Extensions Community Library (PECL) and is available for everyone to view, branch, compile, and contribute to. The IIS team also invites the PHP development community to join it in development of this caching extension for PHP on Windows. There have already been some contributions from the community whileWinCache was in the pre-release mode, and IIS team is looking forward to having others join this new PHP on Windows caching project. Also, in time for this release, an independent PHP company - Ibuildings - has conducted a benchmark test with the WinCache RTW bits and published the results. The release of this production-ready PHP accelerator for Windows is an important step towards making the Windows operating system an even better platform for hosting PHP applications. WinCache extension significantly improves performance of PHP applications and lowers CPU load on the server. This, together with the fact that no application code changes are necessary to take advantage of the caching, makes WinCache a must have extension when running PHP on Windows. More information about the WinCache extension for PHP can be found as follows: The PECL documentation on WinCache The PHP on Windows feature team blogs (Kanwal, Ruslan, and Don) The WinCache community forum The IIS.NET documentation on WinCache The WinCache on PECL source code, licensed under BSD How to file bugs on WinCache in PECL
The Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) team announced today the release of Windows Cache Extension 1.0 for PHP, a PHP accelerator that is used to increase the speed of PHP applications running on Windows and Windows Server.
This is a production-ready release that is provided under an open source BSD license, with the source code hosted and maintained here, and the documentation hosted on php.net.
You can find more details on this release on IIS team Product Unit Manager Mai-lan Tomsen Bukovec's blog.
WinCache extension is a significant open source contribution from Microsoft to the PHP on Windows community. The extension code is hosted and maintained on PHP Extensions Community Library (PECL) and is available for everyone to view, branch, compile, and contribute to.
The IIS team also invites the PHP development community to join it in development of this caching extension for PHP on Windows. There have already been some contributions from the community whileWinCache was in the pre-release mode, and IIS team is looking forward to having others join this new PHP on Windows caching project.
Also, in time for this release, an independent PHP company - Ibuildings - has conducted a benchmark test with the WinCache RTW bits and published the results.
The release of this production-ready PHP accelerator for Windows is an important step towards making the Windows operating system an even better platform for hosting PHP applications.
WinCache extension significantly improves performance of PHP applications and lowers CPU load on the server. This, together with the fact that no application code changes are necessary to take advantage of the caching, makes WinCache a must have extension when running PHP on Windows.
More information about the WinCache extension for PHP can be found as follows:
by Peter Galli on November 18, 2009 11:59am
The beta for Silverlight 4 was released today, Scott Guthrie, a Corporate Vice President in Microsoft's Developer Division, told attendees at the annual Professional Developers Conference here in Los Angeles.
The final verison of the product will be shipped in the first half of 2010, he said, noting that the release of the beta means that developers can begin testing the capabilities of Silverlight 4 to plan for the great applications and rich, compelling user experiences to come, both on and off the Web.
Some 90% of the most commonly requested features were incorporated into Silverlight 4, which is currently installed on 40% of all internet devices and more than 50% of US broadband PCs, Guthrie said.
A number of customers, including Snapflow, Seesmic and H&R Block, as well as numerous Microsoft properties such as Xbox, Bing and MSN, are all already using Silverlight to create compelling user experiences.
The Silverlight 4 beta extends beyond the browser, and brings new out-of-browser capabilities, enabling new experiences that reach deeper into the desktop without additional code or runtimes required.
Webcam and microphone with local recording capability opens new possibilities for innovative interactive media experiences, while native multicast support enables efficient enterprise-wide training and internal communications behind the firewall.
Full support for Silverlight in Visual Studio 2010 gives enterprise developers a tried and trusted development environment and languages that scales for mission-critical enterprise scenarios, while integration with Microsoft Office and Microsoft SharePoint bring the benefits of Silverlight interactivity to a broad enterprise install base, Guthrie said.
Enhanced printing, networking, databinding, reporting and charting capabilities satisfy common business needs, while Silverlight has a growing library of over 60 customizable controls to create rich, interactive applications to rapidly build attractive, functional business applications.
Microsoft also has extended support for Google's Chrome browser with Silverlight 4.
Microsoft is also working with the open source community to ensure that Silverlight content is available to them. Earlier this year, Moonlight 1.0 was released. Moonlight is an open source project that gives Linux users access to Microsoft Silverlight content, and is available for all major Linux distributions, including openSUSE, SUSE Linux Enterprise, Fedora, Red Hat, and Ubuntu.
by Peter Galli on November 17, 2009 12:14pm
Ray Ozzie, Microsoft's Chief Software Architect, used the company's annual Professional Developers Conference here in Los Angeles to announce the availability of the Windows Azure platform.
That platform consists of Windows Azure, the operating system as-a-service, and SQL Azure, a fully relational database in the cloud. The Service Bus and Access Control services, formerly known as the .NET Services, now run directly within Windows Azure and are known as Windows Azure platform AppFabric Service.
Microsoft will continue to offer Windows Azure as a Community Technology Preview until the end of this year, after which it will switch to a production service under which Azure's cloud services will be made available to enterprises. But users will get a fee pass in January, since charges will only start accruing in February.
In his opening keynote, Ozzie also announced that a small number of customers will go into production today, including Automattic, Inc., the maker of WordPress, which is now live on Azure. Matt Mullenweg, founder of Automattic, Inc., took the stage to demonstrate MySQL, PHP, and Apache support on Windows Azure, as well as to announce that his company is launching a new site that runs on SQL Azure.
Ozzie also used his keynote to made clear that reaching all developers was top of mind for Microsoft.
"To most developers, to developers like you, Windows Azure appears as a model based extension to Visual Studio, enabling you to build apps that leverage your skills in SQL, IIS, ASP.NET, and .NET Framework. Alternatively, and of course it's your choice, you might leverage your skills by using MySQL and PHP within Azure, or you might instead take advantage of our new Azure tools for Java and Eclipse. Reaching all developers is incredibly important to us," he said.
Windows Azure now supported any kind of Windows code and programming model, and any kind of multi-role, multi-tier service design pattern, supporting extremely flexible binding and arbitrary relationships between roles, Ozzie said.
"Because you wanted it, we've broadened far beyond just the .NET programming model, and the Web role, worker role service design pattern. We added support for FastCGI, enabling high scale Web apps to be written in any of a variety of programming languages. And, in sessions this week, you're going to see the Windows Azure team quickly building and deploying Java apps, running under Tomcat. You'll see PHP apps under MySQL," he said.
Earlier this year, Microsoft enabled .NET full trust and native code applications. This functionality allowed developers to spawn xcopy deployable processes. As a result, Java applications can now be packaged and run.
Today, we announced that we are delivering a solution accelerator for Tomcat, an open source software implementation of the Java Servlet and JavaServer Pages technologies, as well as launching a Java SDK for Windows Azure Storage (tables, blogs, and queues). External endpoints (inbound traffic) to worker roles have also been enabled, which enables applications that receive internet traffic that aren't running under IIS.
During his keynote Ozzie also introduced Vivek Kundra, the Federal Chief Information Officer at the White House, who spoke via live feed from Washington D.C., and who encouraged developers to take advantage of the vast amount of public data to create applications using this new Microsoft technology.
"I'm really excited about what NASA is doing in cooperation with Microsoft with the launch of the Pathfinder Innovation Challenge ... anybody can participate and look at the data that has been democratized through NASA on the Azure platform, that allows people to look around the red planet, slice and dice, and cube, and create information, and advance our understanding of the universe," Kundra said.
This commitment to all developers is not new. When Ozzie first announced the Windows Azure platform at PDC last year, Sam Ramji blogged that developers will also be able to choose from a range of open source development tools and technologies, and be able to access Azure services using a variety of common internet standards, including HTTP, REST, WS* and Atom.
"The Azure platform's goal is to support all developers and their choice of IDE, language and technology. We are also providing programmable components that can be consumed by other applications, and Microsoft is funding and sponsoring open source software development kits to enable Java and Ruby developers to take advantage of Azure. This is significant as this is the first time we are delivering cross-platform software development kits at the same time as Microsoft Developer Network software development kits," he said.
And, earlier this year, Microsoft introduced the PHP SDK for Windows Azure, an open source effort for which Microsoft has provided funding, with development by RealDolmen, whose goal is to provide high-level abstractions that enable PHP developers to interoperate readily with Windows Azure.
The PHP SDK for Windows Azure focuses on REST and provides PHP classes for Windows Azure blobs, tables and queue, helper classes for HTTP transport, AuthN/AuthZ, REST and error management, as well as manageability, instrumentation and logging support.
Next up at PDC 2009 was Bob Muglia, President of Microsoft's Server and Tools Business, who noted that Microsoft is converging on a common developer platform for both servers and services, that will enable developers to continue using familiar .NET Framework and Visual Studio tools and technologies, as well as third party tools such as Eclipse, to create and monetize applications that run on the server and as services in the cloud.
Muglia also announced the company's plan to offer Windows Server Virtual Machine support on Windows Azure, enabling customers to more easily support virtualized infrastructure across the continuum of on premises and cloud computing.
In addition, Muglia announced the new release of ASP.NET MVC beta 2, a free, fully-supported framework that enables developers to rapidly build standards-based Web applications through rich AJAX integration and enhanced extensibility.
In other related news, SugarCRM, a provider of commercial open source customer relationship management software, today also announced that it will offer its CRM applications on Windows Azure to enable its customers and value-added resellers to benefit from the real-time scalability, high availability and on-demand infrastructure of Azure.
"With Windows Azure, Microsoft has built a true cloud computing platform going well beyond the simple hosted infrastructure that most service providers offer today. Windows Azure enables SugarCRM value-added resellers to create and deploy unique solutions for customers around the globe. This new service is another key component of the Sugar Open Cloud, the SugarCRM cloud strategy for delivering simple, affordable CRM anywhere based on customer need," said Larry Augustin, CEO of SugarCRM, in a press statement.
by Peter Galli on November 16, 2009 09:16am
I have great news to announce. Today, at the Microsoft Professional Developer Conference (PDC) here in Los Angeles, we announced not only the release of version 4.0 of the.NET Micro Framework, but also that we are open sourcing the product and making it available under the Apache 2.0 license, which is already being used by the community within the embedded space.
The .NET Micro Framework,a development and execution environment for resource-constrained devices, was initially developed inside the Microsoft Startup Business Accelerator, but recently moved to the Developer Division so as to be more closely aligned with the overall direction of Microsoft development efforts.
The result of this is that the .NET Micro Framework has become a seamless development experience, bringing a single programming model and tool chain for the breadth of developer solutions, all the way from small intelligent devices, to servers and the cloud. There are also no more time-limited versions.
Including the source code for almost all of the product also ensures that developers now also get access to the Base Class Libraries that were implemented for .NET Micro Framework and the CLR code itself.
However, both the TCP/IP stack and Cryptography libraries are not included in the source code. Program Manager Colin Miller told me this was because the TCP/IP stack is third party software that Microsoft licenses from EBSNet, so we do not have the rights to distribute that source code. If someone needs to access the source code for the TCP/IP stack, they can contact EBSNet directly.
As for the Cyptography libraries, they are not included in source code because they are used outside of the scope of the .NET Micro Framework. Customers who need to have access to the code in the cryptography functions will find that these libraries can be replaced, Miller said.
I asked Miller what the future plans for the .Net Micro Framework were, and he made clear that Microsoft intends to remain actively involved in its ongoing development, working alongside the community. While the license will allow customers to take the code and make specialized versions to fit their needs, customers told us they wanted Microsoft to stay involved to avoid any possible fragmentation of the platform.
"As such, we are planning on establishing a core technology team that is made up of both Microsoft and non-Microsoft contributors that continues the goals of producing a high quality product for very small devices. This group will act as the gateway to community contributions while, at the same time, Microsoft Developers will continue add functionality and coordinate with the overall .NET team," he said.
Microsoft is also in the process of forming a community of interested and involved members to help shape the future direction of the product. There will be a core technology team that is composed of Microsoft and external partners, and people will be encouraged to propose projects, which will be vetted before they are accepted.
"The site will also support people building extensions that exist alongside the platform rather than being integrated into it, " Miller told me.
by Peter Galli on November 13, 2009 11:24am
As you've likely read and as was originally reported here, we've been investigating a report that the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool, might contain GPLv2 code. The WUDT is a free tool that was offered by the Microsoft Store and which enabled customers to create bootable USB drives or DVD backup media from the electronic software (ESD) edition of Windows 7 that comes in an ISO format.
After looking at the code in question, we are now able to confirm this was indeed the case, although it was not intentional on our part. While we had contracted with a third party to create the tool, we share responsibility as we did not catch it as part of our code review process. We have furthermore conducted a review of other code provided through the Microsoft Store and this was the only incident of this sort we could find.
When it comes to our attention that a Microsoft component contains third party code, our aim is to be respectful of the terms under which that code is being shared. As a result, we will be making the source code as well as binaries for this tool available next week under the terms of the General Public License v2 as described here, and are also taking measures to apply what we have learned from this experience for future code reviews we perform.
We apologize to our customers for any inconvenience this has caused.
This post was updated to include the link to the original article.