Microsoft Launches Visual Studio 2005, SQL Server 2005

Microsoft Launches Visual Studio 2005, SQL Server 2005
Today, Microsoft officially launches Visual Studio 2005 (formerly code-named Whidbey) and SQL Server 2005 (formerly code-named Yukon) at a gala event at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Presiding over the launch will be Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, who will give a keynote address. Microsoft is making both products available to the public immediately. (Microsoft Developer Network—MSDN—subscribers have had access to them for over a week.) A third product, Microsoft BizTalk Server 2006, launches as well but won’t ship until early next year.
The computer world has eagerly anticipated the launch of both products, which occurs over a year later than originally expected. Together, Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005 make up what Microsoft originally called the “Yukon wave” of products. This product wave was supposed to arrive midway between the release of Windows XP and Windows Vista, but delays moved the launches closer to Windows Vista, which is due next year.
Both product lines offer a bewildering array of editions. Visual Studio 2005 ships in several versions, including low-end Express Editions of individual developer environments, such as Visual Basic 2005 and Visual C# 2005, and several high-end Visual Studio 2005 Team System versions. SQL Server 2005 will ship several different versions aimed at the enterprise, at developers, and--with a free Express edition--at enthusiasts.

Amazingly, Microsoft is also offering the Visual Studio Express Editions for free for the next year. After that, the products will be bargain priced at just $49 each.

Both products lines also bring wide-ranging functional improvements and can be integrated to increase developer productivity. This week on the SuperSite for Windows I’ll examine the improvements. My overview of Visual Studio 2005 is already available, and later this week I’ll publish a similar treatment for SQL Server 2005.

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