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Open Source Software Seeping Into the .NET Developer World

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the slowly-but-surely dept.

Open Source 146

dp619 writes "In an interview, Microsoft Regional Director Patrick Hynds says that avoidance of open source components by a large part of the .NET developer population is abating. '...While some may still steer clear of the GPL, there are dozens of FOSS licenses that are compatible with Windows developers and their customers,' he said. Hynds cites NuGet, an open source package management system was originally built by Microsoft and now an Outercurve Foundation project, as an example of FOSS libraries that .NET developer are adopting for their applications. Microsoft itself has embraced open source — to a point. It has partnered with Hortonworks for a Windows port of Hadoop, allowed Linux to run on Windows Azure, and is itself a Hadoop user."

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Get in on the action? (2, Interesting)

mystikkman (1487801) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088161)

Why should Google and Apple be the only ones that make gobs of money leveraging Open Source? Microsoft wants to join the party.

Re:Get in on the action? (2, Informative)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088261)

Perhaps, but the company that once called it a "cancer" is going to have a hard time reconciling its culture to it - especially since Microsoft relies on proprietary software for its very existence. Sure they do make (and mostly give away) some FOSS software, but it's very little and you really have to look for it.

I suspect that the best Microsoft could do is to try and hijack existing FOSS projects and slather on a proprietary UI, or some sort of glue to tie to loosely to products they already make.

Incidentally, Microsoft tried this gambit before with its 'me too!' 'shared source' licensing (and similar). I wonder how many projects not hosted/sponsored/funded by Microsoft actually use those?

Re:Get in on the action? (3, Insightful)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088543)

They called Linux a cancer, not open source software. They've used BSD software before. BSD folks are just fine with it, so there's no 'hijacking' involved.

No, they falsely called the GPL license a cancer. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088621)

And lied again calling Linux a cancer because it is under the GPL.

Re:No, they falsely called the GPL license a cance (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089727)

Well it is actually quite arguable that the GPL does work like a disease or cancer passing on to those that use it. While this conjures up negative conotations it is in many ways how it is meant to work, it is supposed to be an incurable license that passes on to all offspring of the original. Those that favour GPL find this a great thing, those that don't find it inconvenient or in some cases down right unpalatable.

Re:No, they falsely called the GPL license a cance (2, Insightful)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090569)

GPL does not work like a disease, because a disease propagates regardless of the desires of its host, or the newly infected people. GPL, on the other hand, is something that you decide to use (or not to use) of your own volition.

Re:No, they falsely called the GPL license a cance (0)

larry bagina (561269) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092971)

Tell that to everyone that decided to fuck a girl (or guy, if that's your proclivity) with herpes.

Re:No, they falsely called the GPL license a cance (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43091175)

Well it is actually quite arguable that the GPL does work like a disease or cancer passing on to those that use it.

Cancer is not infectious, so calling the GPL a cancer because of the way it works is a major fail.

Re:No, they falsely called the GPL license a cance (1)

morgauxo (974071) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092267)

Some cancers are started by viri.

Re:Get in on the action? (2)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088721)

It's sixes, given that OSS was the target for Ballmer's ire:

"Ballmer was trying to articulate his concern, whether real or imagined, that limited recourse to the GNU GPL requires that all software be made open source.
"The way the license is written, if you use any open-source software, you have to make the rest of your software open source,"

ref: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2001/06/02/ballmer_linux_is_a_cancer/ [theregister.co.uk]

Re:Get in on the action? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088877)

That's what you're angry about?! You could find a similar quote from a thousand different open source developers.

The community consensus seems to be that GPL is a poor choice for library or framework code for exactly this reason.

Re:Get in on the action? (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089003)

Not angry about it... I actually find it funny.

Re:Get in on the action? (2, Interesting)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090363)

Which is of course a lie. Just because I have GPL software on my Windows machine, does not mean I have to make any software I write open source.

I don't even have to make it so if I compile a C program with the gcc - a GPL compiler. It explicitly says this in the license. [gnu.org]

The same applies to any GPL program - using it does not make the works you create with it GPL as well.

Just a massive bit of FUD. Ballmer should be thankful that there have been open-source developers writing programs that work on Windows, increasing the value of his platform at no cost to his corporation.

Re:Get in on the action? (3)

dbIII (701233) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089805)

They've used GPL software such as gcc and delivered it complete with source and licence on Microsoft developer CDROMs. That was not long before the person near the top of the tree started screaming "developers, developers, developers!" and started undermining his own developers.

Re:Get in on the action? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43090495)

They? .Net devs are not Microsoft.

Re:Get in on the action? (5, Interesting)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088701)

Microsoft is not quite a single monolithic entity, and different product units can and do have very different perspectives on FOSS. Developer division, in particular, is pretty much forced to deal with it, just because of the wide acceptance of it in the customer base today. Which is precisely why most FOSS you see coming out of MS does come from DevDiv, and a good chunk of that are various frameworks (e.g. ASP.NET MVC or Entity Framework). It's also catching on somewhat for other products - Python Tools for Visual Studio is one prominent example there, and is probably a better example of what a FOSS MS project should really be, since it goes beyond just publishing the code (under Apache license), and also takes external contributions.

(disclaimer: I am a developer on the Python Tools team, so you may I assume that I am correspondingly biased)

The other part of the company that has strong market pressure to be FOSS-friendly is Azure. If you want to compete with AWS and Google, you have let customers run things other than the usual 100% MS .NET/IIS/Windows stack, in various combinations - at the very least, people need Java and PHP (and more exotic stuff like Python and Node.js) for apps, and many also want Apache (or other server) rather than IIS, and Linux rather than Windows. Then they want the cloud service (storage etc) APIs to be available in those languages in client apps, as well.

On the other hand, I would be surprised to see a FOSS version of Windows or Office anytime soon - simply because most people buying and using it don't really care one way or another, so there's no incentive to strongly consider it.

Re:Get in on the action? (1, Informative)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090383)

Cringeley (I think) wrote a column once that opined that Microsoft should just make Windows into a desktop environment for Linux, thereby gaining the services of a huge community of excellent kernel developers. It made a kind of sense.

Re:Get in on the action? (5, Informative)

PhrostyMcByte (589271) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088759)

Sure they do make (and mostly give away) some FOSS software, but it's very little and you really have to look for it.

ASP.NET [codeplex.com] , Entity Framework [codeplex.com] , and Rx [codeplex.com] are all non-trivial Open Source projects by Microsoft which I use daily at work. They are all under the Apache License 2.0, not one of those ridiculous "shared source" licenses. They make use of existing third-party Open Source libraries. They manage the projects in the open and accept contributions from non-Microsofties.

Additionally, Microsoft has embraced NuGet, a third-party dpkg/apt for .NET libraries which has thousands of projects in it. It's integrated into the latest Visual Studio, and Microsoft uses it as their primary distribution point for nearly all of their Open Source projects.

Microsoft has a pretty shitty history when it comes to Open Source, but they really have turned over a new leaf on the subject. I think they've come to realize that it's better to foster than to dictate -- you're still using their product (.NET) in the end, after all. Some purists won't be happy with that, I guess.

Re:Get in on the action? (2)

gronofer (838299) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090013)

Microsoft have been making money from open source for years - by shaking it down for patent royalties. Making money from open source and supporting it are not exactly the same thing in this case.

Re:Get in on the action? (1, Troll)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090579)

Google makes money selling advertising. They spend money on open source project some of which are use to make awful emasculating mobile phones.

Re:Get in on the action? (1)

sproketboy (608031) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092217)

Twenty years too late.

Uhm... what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088367)

I would think it's not avoidance, it's the fact that the majority of open source tools and libraries are not targeting .NET (they are targeting Linux/Java in the server space).

Re:Uhm... what? (-1, Redundant)

icebike (68054) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088707)

This. When they talk about the .Net community, I think to myself, "Do I know of even ONE such person?" No.

Then you read this gem from Microsoft's Hynds:

This uncertainty sets the stage for avoidance of open source components by a large part of the .NET developer population. In fact I had seen developers fired because they included a component into a project without getting clearance to ensure the license of that component did not impinge on the licensing of the project as a whole.

Gee, I wonder who might have instigated that?

Re:Uhm... what? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088823)

>Gee, I wonder who might have instigated that?

If you think any project, open or proprietary, is going to tolerate inclusion of code of a possibly incompatible license when there's a recall and/or lawsuit at stake, you are either a newb or a moron. Possibly both.

Re:Uhm... what? (2, Insightful)

Yaur (1069446) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089011)

I run a dev team for a commercial, closed source, product. If one of my developers introduces stolen code into the product, one or both of us is getting fired. It doesn't matter if the environment is .net or not and it doesn't matter if its stolen from a FOSS project or a competitor's code base. I don't think that is unreasonable or hard to understand and I've never had to fire someone because of it.

Re:Uhm... what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43090647)

Makes me glad to work for an open-source shop.

Re:Uhm... what? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43091179)

I work for a open-source shop. If the we, the developers, include code with an unclear license we get a warning. The seconds time it happens we can get fired. Just because you are a open-source shop does not mean your company can't get sued for licence violations.

Re:Uhm... what? (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091317)

its not so much stolen code we're talking about here, its (lets be frank) the GPL. If you embed GPL-licenced code into your project, your closed-source project instantly becomes open-source due to the licence agreement you agreed to when you embedded that GPL code.

Most commercial companies take a dim view on this, obviously. There's no problem with it, but if you don't want this arrangement, the the simple answer is not to use that GPL code. Write your own!

But, if a "rogue" programmer puts that code in there without permission, then its a definite case for disciplinary procedures.

Re:Uhm... what? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43091609)

If you embed GPL-licenced code into your project, your closed-source project instantly becomes open-source due to the licence agreement you agreed to when you embedded that GPL code.

What a heap of FUD-reeking bullshit. What happens is that the version of your code that has been contaminated can't be distributed legally, you get into trouble for copyright infringement if the original developers get pissed off and you have to show good faith in trying to fix the situation to the best of your ability ASAP. Under no circumstances does your product automatically become "open-sourced".

Re:Uhm... what? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088723)

There are plenty of open source .NET libraries, too. Quite a few are, in fact, ports/forks from Java - NHibernate being one prominent example.

Re:Uhm... what? (2)

gbjbaanb (229885) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091413)

Quite a few are, in fact, ports/forks from Java - .NET being one prominent example

TFTFY :-)

.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (5, Insightful)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088445)

The .NET developer community has long favored open source code, even though Microsoft hasn't always done much to encourage it. However, it seems that .NET developers never get even grudging respect from the likes of Stallman and other Linux hardliners out there. Ironically, this hostility towards .NET has played into the hands of those at Microsoft who sought to discourage the use of .NET outside of Microsoft's control. Yes, the patent laws are a problem but Microsoft has already made legally binding promises not to litigate their patents on core technologies and to be honest the whole patent system is so messed up that you're pretty much damned if you do and damned if you don't whether you use .NET or not. So, if you're worried about patents you should do what every sensible startup does and simply ignore them because (a) patents contain zero useful information for coders (they're written by attorneys for attorneys) and (b) knowing that a patent exists means willful infringement which is treble damages.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Arker (91948) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088485)

Whatever their desires may be, programming for a platform where open source has been intentionally denied even the possibility of existence and calling it open source is simply... idiotic. If you want to contribute to mankind you need to do it in a form that can be legally parsed by newcomers without paying licensing fees. Not that hard to figure out, surely?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (5, Insightful)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088611)

Yeah, writing software for a living for a target audience using 90% of the computers out there is idiotic. Especially if that's part of the 99% of the target audience that's used to actually paying you for your software.

You might not agree with closed source software, but calling folks idiotic for writing software for a large market you can get paid for writing software for is..... idiotic.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0, Troll)

Arker (91948) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088673)

Again, the question is not how many people can execute it, the question is how many can parse it, and what is the barrier to entry they face? Writing for a popular market may not be idiotic, but writing for a popular *closed* market and falsely claiming to be open source IS idiotic.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2, Insightful)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088891)

I write some closed source proprietary programs. I also write some open source programs. If the source code is out there, free for anyone to use, it's open source. It doesn't matter if the OS it runs on is not. The code is free for anyone to use modify, or translate to run in the language and on the OS of their choice. It's open source.

It's not a false claim. It's just doesn't live up to the unreasonable expectations some people want to use to keep strictly to their own personal 'pure' definition of open source.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089349)

The intention of releasing open code by programmers, is for others to re-work it, but they want that re-worked code to stay open. That is not a personal belief by one or a handful of people. I believe that by your comments you can agree to that being universal among open source.

If closed code is using open code to modify there own software, then that open code used should remain in public view for others programmers to re-work. MS is using it to fuel there own greed, as well as making statements to consumers who really know little about FOSS but figure that MS has gone from Anti FOSS to adopting FOSS. And they have only do so after FOSS has taken off, or has more acceptance now then it ever had before.

I am pretty sure that open source programmers also write closed source as a way to pay there bills, you can also donate money to open soruce programmers as a thanx, which is something more people should do, should, you do not have to.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089481)

If closed code is using open code to modify there own software, then that open code used should remain in public view for others programmers to re-work.

The open code is always open. If it's written with the BSD licence and someone wants to fork away a proprietary version, that's fine. The original open code is still there, and viewable by the public for anyone to use and re-work.

GPL advocates seem to always talk like it magically disappears or something. It doesn't.
   

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (3, Insightful)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090811)

That's not our beef with it - our problem with choosing BSD-style licenses for our code is not that the original code disappears, it's twofold

i) We granted the freedom to use our code to the person receiving our software. We'd like the person receiving it to be good enough to do the same.

ii) We put effort into the code - possibly a large community has put in many man hours of work. It doesn't seem fair that a corporation could take that code, roll it into a product, and make a profit selling it, without contributing to the community that created it in the first place, but that is what BSD permits.

Incidentally, GPL permits this too - it's all about distribution of the software. If a corporation builds software on GPL code, they only have to share their changes with whoever they distribute to. That could be themselves, or just their customers.

What GPL doesn't permit is that you forbid the recipients of your software from redistributing it, and it doesn't allow you to withhold the source code from them. BSD style licenses allow you to add these restrictions, GPL does not.

So corporations love BSD licenses because it lets them get something for nothing, with no obligation to give anything back. There are still benefits in contribution to BSD licensed projects - like a reduced overhead, why maintain your patches when the community will do it for you?

I work for the UK government in software development - I happen to think that GPL is an appropriate license for all government-funded software. If the people are funding it, all the people ought to be able to continue to benefit from it. Of course, corporations don't see it this way and refuse to play ball if you mention it - so the most common license we use is APL2. It irks me that they get a free ride from my taxes. That's not capitalism, that's socialism - for corporations.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2)

shia84 (1985626) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091013)

It's because of different standards. In the FOSS world, an unmaintained project is considered dead, gets removed from the repositories and people are very hesitant to download and install it. On Windows, I've seen folks running some installer from 2004, which always makes me cringe a little, but they simply shrug it off with "I need that functionality" and everything's fine.

Note that code which hasn't changed for a decade can be perfectly "fresh" if there is a maintainer who checks compatibility with newer systems and "guarantees" security bugfixes in case they are needed.

With source code, the count of current monthly contributions matters, and with BSD licenses, you run the "danger" of those contributions migrating out of the open source space. Of course the original source stays open, but if a proprietary derivative is more active, in some way (it's all perception, really) this makes the original less desirable, similar to stale applications described above. It often coincides with the loss of the maintainer.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091865)

So?

If software isn't important enough for someone to at least maintain a shared copy of somewhere, why should I care that it goes away? Somone selling software that does something similar must be better enough that folks are willing to pay for the difference.

If it's under the GPL then it won't be in the private code anyhow, so no loss. If it's under BSD, then the BSD author is fine with it. So there's no real problem. Just folk getting their panties in a bunch because other folks didn't agree with them on a license philosophy. Enough that in this case, they falsely claim the BSD software isn't open source.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089673)

The intention of releasing open code by programmers, is for others to re-work it, but they want that re-worked code to stay open.

See, you were doing good with the first part of the sentence. Then you veered off. The second part of your sentenc is what *GPL* programmers want. Not what all open code programmers want. People who like BSD, and many other of the licenses out there, are just fine with folks forking off proprietary code if they want. The open code they have written is still always out there for others to use/fork/enjoy.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (3, Interesting)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088743)

Whatever their desires may be, programming for a platform where open source has been intentionally denied even the possibility of existence and calling it open source

In what sense open source has been "intentionally denied even the possibility of existence" on .NET or Windows?

If you want to contribute to mankind you need to do it in a form that can be legally parsed by newcomers without paying licensing fees.

You mean, like Mono?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43090523)

Mono is not .NET no matter how hard it tries.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43092335)

> You mean, like Mono?

From http://mono-project.com/Contributing
"If you have looked at Microsoft's proprietary implementation of .NET or their shared source code (which is also proprietary), you will not be able to contribute to Mono. If you would like to contribute in this area, be careful to not look into them in Visual Studio debugging experience."

Not everyone can use Mono in a sense of how open source is meant to be used.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43090879)

idiotic. If you want to contribute to mankind you need to do it in a form that can be legally parsed by newcomers without paying licensing fees. Not that hard to figure out, surely?

One of things that people have forgotten, in a land far far away called the eighties tool vendors didn't just want to see you tools, compilers and libraries,
they wanted a cut of your action. That's right pay up front a buttload of cash per seat, and then you paid a licensing fee per unit shipped. Microsoft and Borland didn't do that.

You know who does that now? Apple.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (3)

ADRA (37398) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088549)

Long favored? Most people that I've known doing .NET work are wired into the frameworks Microsoft developed, glued on thier own proprietary bits and called it a day. Can you please leave some feedback on these very popular community driven OSS efforts in the .NET umbrella (outside of Mono which is a re-implementation of Microsoft's API's), becase quite frankly, I've never heard of any.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088781)

NHibernate is probably the single most popular community-driven FOSS project specifically targeting .NET.

Generally speaking, most people will use whatever comes in the standard library, proprietary or not - just because it's less of a hassle to begin with. That said, some standard frameworks have gone FOSS themselves - ASP.NET MVC, for example, and Entity Framework.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (5, Informative)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088785)

How about these to name just a few?

Plus tons more available on:

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

GigaplexNZ (1233886) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088897)

What does TortoiseSVN have to do with .NET?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089227)

Not sure if anyone has gotten the TortoiseSVN project to build in Mono, but it seems that at the very least you would need the .NET Framework 4.0 tools, or Visual C++, to build the project from source.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

GigaplexNZ (1233886) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089257)

It's C++. The .NET Framework doesn't come into it, nor does Mono.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089565)

I'll take your word for it being that I don't actually use that one, but TortoiseSVN not withstanding there are still many fine open source projects written on top of the .NET Framework as well as a vast corpus of articles, code samples and minor projects all using .NET. So to suggest that .NET just isn't popular in open source, as some seem determined to do, strains credulity at the very least.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089237)

Maybe he meant AnkhSVN [collab.net] ?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

wmac1 (2478314) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090459)

Git was chosen to be integrated with Visual SVN.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

Yaur (1069446) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088869)

log4net [apache.org] and Json.Net [codeplex.com] are two prime examples. We are also using a bunch of open source media libraries (e.g. ffmpeg and opencv) on my current project and have been for years. The only resistance is that we are shipping closed source software so anything that is GPLed is out, but if the business reality changed to where we could a GPLed product there wouldn't be a second thought about using code under the GPL.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088963)

Most people that I've known doing .NET work

Are these, by chance, people working in well funded corporations and hold Microsoft certifications?

You will find there are many different kinds of .NET developers and not all of them purely drink the Kool-aid. As with pretty much every language there are oodles of open source frameworks for web, ORM, IoC, etc... as well as libraries - both for things not provided by Microsoft and already provided by Microsoft (but lacking). Codeplex [codeplex.com] is a place you can look, or just Google for a .NET version of your favourite project - it probably exists.

If you're not a .NET developer, I'm not sure why you would expect to have heard of popular open source projects for .NET developers. I hadn't heard of express before developing Node.js projects.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090111)

Dapper, Json.net, NancyFX, Nhibernate, Automapper, Ninject, Castle, PetaPoco, Lucene.Net, Nlog, log4net, Elmah...

You obviously don't look all that hard.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

TrekkieGod (627867) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091109)

Long favored? Most people that I've known doing .NET work are wired into the frameworks Microsoft developed, glued on thier own proprietary bits and called it a day. Can you please leave some feedback on these very popular community driven OSS efforts in the .NET umbrella (outside of Mono which is a re-implementation of Microsoft's API's), becase quite frankly, I've never heard of any.

Go check out codeplex. As a .NET developer, we've been using lots and lots of open source .NET libraries from there for many years. The .NET open-source community is very active and it has always been so.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43091605)

part from the ones already mentioned: Spring.NET, StructureMap, Log4Net, all springs to mind

.NET + Open Source is like HIV + Free Sex (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088577)

Don't be screwed by .NET!
Slavery is Freedom?
1984.NET

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

Microlith (54737) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088597)

it seems that .NET developers never get even grudging respect from the likes of Stallman and other Linux hardliners out there

Hardliners aren't going to show respect to an audience that uses tools fundamentally centered on non-Free platforms. What led you to think otherwise?

Ironically, this hostility towards .NET has played into the hands of those at Microsoft who sought to discourage the use of .NET outside of Microsoft's control.

Has it? It's done a marvelous job of killing integration of .NET technologies in Linux platforms, and for good reason quite frankly.

Yes, the patent laws are a problem but Microsoft has already made legally binding promises not to litigate their patents on core technologies

Only within the context of .NET. Were the patented methods to be used in other areas, as FOSS lends itself to, you would be open to a lawsuit from Microsoft. This is why they were rebuffed.

if you're worried about patents you should do what every sensible startup does and simply ignore them

We can't do this because with .NET we know it is encumbered with limited use patents and:

knowing that a patent exists means willful infringement which is treble damages.

No they didn't. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088659)

The did say that about the base interpreter... but to actually USE .net requires things they DIDN'T include.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2)

Mawen (317927) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088993)

I have been a .NET developer for about 9 years, and I am a little dumbfounded by this article as I have integrated opensource whenever I could, whether from codeplex (or github) or codeproject. Of course, if you are developing an application, you are not going to incorporate one of the few libraries that suicidally licenses itself as GPL, forcing you to do the same with your entire application -- you are going to stick to LGPL and BSD type licenses. This is not .NET specific -- any real app developer doing commercial work is faced with this reality (unless they don't want to make money, or want to be exposed to lawsuits.) Another great option for library developers is a dual GPL/commercial license, to let users try a library and work with it internally before deciding to purchase.

Sure there has been a cultural shift that maybe was in more of a full swing from 2006-2010 that has seen open source as less suspicious and fringe and more useful, but my reaction is: 2009 called and they want their story back.

There is still a lot of irrational fear about .NET out there. I used to find it irritating but now I am amused by others' ignorance as .NET continues to do well and be an enjoyable evolving technology within the scopes of the markets carved out for it on the Windows desktop, Mono, and virtually every major gaming platform via Unity3D. (Unity3D itself is not open source but it was made possible by the open source projects Mono and MonoDevelop, and I was just looking at an opensource plugin for Unity3D today.) ...And this while Oracle, which doesn't even seem to hide their evilness, seems to let Java rot with security vulnerabilities and slower inclusion of language features, as I uninstall it and don't miss it or see a competing alternative to Unity3D. And I develop for iOS, where Apple's tyranny makes Microsoft look pretty soft. (And LGPL isn't compatible with Apple's app store thanks to the relinking requirement.) (Note: I develop for both iOS and soon Android using .NET.) Aside from server-side things and perhaps Android, as far as I can tell .NET is being a better Java than Java at the things I pay attention to, and all the open source plays a huge part in that. (I do wish WPF/Silverlight was better and more prevalent, but perhaps I will be inspired to make an improved cross-platform version myself someday -- but many who like WPF have liked it a lot.)

I cut the haters some slack though, as I used to hate Microsoft in 2000, and it took me a few years of full time work with .NET to get over it and realize I could enjoy the technology today and probably years to come, rather than bracing for some unlikely patent-mageddon scenario where Microsoft lawyers slice off one of Microsoft's own legs and eat it for dinner. Even if that day comes, I am prepared to adapt to another technology feeling I come out ahead. I also stopped being a cheapskate and realized money (non-free software) makes cool things happen, and paying $1000 bucks for something is often better than working 200 hours to get something lesser that I don't have time to maintain or start an OSS community around. (And some stuff would be out of the question for me to create, like Xamarin or Unity3D.) Yes, companies like Microsoft have done and will continue to do some stupid things, but if you take corporate stupidity and greed into account and take the time to understand the realm of likely outcomes, you can save yourself from drinking the FUD kool aid and looking silly. But then again, if you are happy (and making a living) in whatever technological bubble you are secluding yourself in, power to ya. I for one am happy in the bubbles of my .NET worlds, surrounded with OSS (my projects usually end up with way too many cool OSS DLLs in them), and making my dreams come true with it.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089023)

Obviously there is some .NET open source. But I have to say I'm hard pressed to think of many (any) open source projects that came out of the .NET community and then spread from there. For example F# is cool but that is fundamentally a port to .NET permanently tied to Visual Studio. Most of Microsoft's rather excellent open source initiatives that aren't specifically exclusively for the Windows stack don't use .NET.

So what has the .NET open source community done in your opinion for which they are being under rewarded?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089399)

So what has the .NET open source community done in your opinion for which they are being under rewarded?

How about ASP.NET MVC, Web API and Razor [codeplex.com] ? The ASP.NET MVC framework is a modern and high quality web development framework with excellent support for test driven development, dependency injection and fine grained control over handling of requests and responses at every level of the stack. Combine this with clean separation of concerns, easy integration with client side javascript and RESTful handling of URLs and you have a top tier web development platform to rival anything offered by the competition.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090587)

All of these are Microsoft projects, though. They did not come out of the community.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092653)

They did not come out of the community.

The grand parent asked, "what has the open source community done", not "what originated completely from within the community". I mentioned the ASP.NET MVC project because the team at Microsoft benefited substantially from community input and even directly from the contrib branch of the project and I believe that the quality of the work is largely under appreciated outside the .NET world. If you look through the code you can see that many contributions, or code based upon ideas and concepts that first appeared in the contrib branch, eventually made their way back into the main trunk, albeit in modified forms. However, if you're looking for examples that came from the community first then have a look a the dependency injection frameworks: Castle, StructureMap and Ninject. The Microsoft version of a dependency injection framework is Unity, but the community projects, especially StructureMap, were first in this area.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091233)

It misses the criteria I listed above about coming out of the community. If that were to go the next step and say be available for Apache then yes it would meet the criteria.

That being said, I agree it is nice to see some .NET open source.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092731)

It misses the criteria I listed above about coming out of the community.

I remind you that the question was originally phrased as, "what has the open source community done" not "what originated completely from within the community". Making contributions to improve an existing project, regardless of where it originated from, is a time honored tradition in open source and ASP.NET MVC has definitely benefited from community contributions. See previous reply for examples of projects that did originate from within the community, especially the dependency injection frameworks.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092899)

The original was me, "But I have to say I'm hard pressed to think of many (any) open source projects that came out of the .NET community and then spread from there." I specifically there was open source .NET but that the .NET community hadn't played a large role, certainly not consistent with their size, in the wider open source community. And this came in response to the idea that the open source community wasn't strongly supportive of .NET.

Your example is a Microsoft driven product which has 0 impact on the broader open source community. Now, that being said, it is possible it could migrate and become broader in time. But that hasn't happened yet.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090599)

For example F# is cool but that is fundamentally a port to .NET permanently tied to Visual Studio.

FYI, not only F# runs on and can target Mono, but it's an officially supported platform for them by design - and they actually test against it.

If you want one large .NET project that came from the community and is fairly widely used, it would probably be NHibernate.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091251)

Did NHiberante come out of the .NET community is used outside?

As far as F# and mono that's good. A strong target app for mono where people on both sides are supportive is useful.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089133)

it seems that .NET developers never get even grudging respect from the likes of Stallman and other Linux hardliners out there.

I can't possibly imagine why "Linux hardliners" wouldn't give respect to a propriety programming platform.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089471)

Respect for one's enemies has a long tradition throughout history and cultures because having respect for one's enemies allows one to appreciate their strengths while at the same time guarding against one's own weaknesses. Indeed, an enemy can be amongst the greatest of teachers for those willing to observe, listen and learn.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

wmac1 (2478314) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090489)

Oh my! Did they kill anyone of each other's family?

This story of hate, love and enemies in software industry is pathetic. Human beings always look for differences to start a fight (race, language, religion, borders, country, skin color, city, ...) and now the programming languages they use!!!

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089187)

Why would anybody involved in free software target a closed platform like MS windows?

Seems to be self defeating.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

ahabswhale (1189519) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089453)

How many open source libraries does the typical .NET web project use?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089627)

I'd say we average about 5 to 10. Actually with the exception of a small handful of libraries that didn't have an alternative, EVERY library we use is open source. Don't know where all these people get the idea there aren't many open source projects in the .NET world...

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (2)

stephanruby (542433) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089671)

Yes, the patent laws are a problem but Microsoft has already made legally binding promises not to litigate their patents on core technologies...

Legally binding promises? How can you tell their promises are legally binding?

Microsoft has an history of using proxy corporations to do its dirty work, so it can insulate itself from direct legal reprisals. Do you have some proof that they closed down that possible avenue for themselves?

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092853)

Legally binding promises? How can you tell their promises are legally binding?

The Microsoft Open Specification Promise [wikipedia.org] is what's called a "covenant not to sue". Such covenants have legal precedent here in the United States and have been held as binding by the courts.

Microsoft has an history of using proxy corporations to do its dirty work, so it can insulate itself from direct legal reprisals. Do you have some proof that they closed down that possible avenue for themselves?

Anyone can sue anyone at anytime and for anything, simply by paying the filing fees of the court. Nobody can guarantee that third parties, patent trolls especially, wont jump out of nowhere and sue you. However, it's a bit of a stretch to lay the blame for the limitations of our legal system here in the United States at Microsoft's feet.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43090075)

I have no idea what you mean by Microsoft hasn't always done much to encourage it. What do you call codeplex then, the entire purpose of that website is to encourage developers to go open-source, and it's owned by Microsoft. On top of that very little of the .NET Framework is obfuscated or otherwise protected from being able to open it up with a reflector to view the code, the parts that are protected against reflection are done so in a way that an experienced coder can figure it out just by studying the unprotected surrounding code.

Re:.NET Developers Have Long Favored Open Source (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092897)

What do you call codeplex then

Notice the use of the phrasing, "hasn't always". Codeplex was launched in May of 2006, four years after the initial public release of the .NET Framework. Microsoft has definitely done more to embrace open source in recent years, but it wasn't always that way. That was my point.

Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088449)

Anything running on .NET CLR or a JVM is practically open source already (putting aside the license), because of reflection and bytecode disassembling.

Re:Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089703)

open source

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Re: Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43091881)

Richard Stallman agrees with his definition. Perhaps you mean "free" or GNU because nothing you have ever done has been without their help. See, my zealot dial goes farther than yours.

Balmer was right! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43088457)

opensource is now infesting more and more cells of the corporate body, and chemo won't cut it

Re:Balmer was right! (1)

c0lo (1497653) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088989)

opensource is now infesting more and more cells of the corporate body, and chemo won't cut it

Well, what's wrong with that?

In Hynds' cite... (1)

jaminJay (1198469) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088585)

In Hynds' cite this is a good thing.

What aversion to open source? (4, Informative)

MobyDisk (75490) | about a year and a half ago | (#43088847)

I see no evidence that .NET developers have an avoidance of open source. The linked article actually seems to present evidence to the contrary. Paraphrasing here:

Q: Why have .NET developers been slow to adopt open source??
PH: The open source movement is not incompatible with the Microsoft development world...commercial software developers represent a big constituency among the .NET Framework community and based on my experience these shops are very cautious about incorporating open source libraries because the licensing...

So what they are really saying is that *commercial software developers* are hesitant to use open source because of licensing issues. That is probably true. That problem is not specific to Microsoft .NET developers, but spans languages and operating systems. That is very different from saying that .NET developers have not been averse to using open source. They use open source far more than their VB and C++/Windows API wielding predecessors. Here is a short list of open source projects I have used at commercial software companies off the top of my head:

log4net, sharpdevelop, nhibernate, nunit, nant, cruise control.net, all the Microsoft Patterns & Practices stuff, ninject, ...

Re:What aversion to open source? (1)

Shados (741919) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091589)

The article completely misunderstands the ecosystem.

No more people avoid open source in the .NET world than in other ecosystems. The difference is that in the .NET world, people avoid third party tools in general. If its built in, its ok. If its not built in and it doesn't come from Telerik, forget it.

The main difference here is that the standard .NET distribution now includes a ton of third party tools, and for the most part they're free, so for the most part they're open source.

I mean, the list you gave are all tools Ive used before...but very very very small minority wil use nhibernate over Entity Framework, even though nhibernate is vastly superior (part of it is its harder to use, but the main thing is, its not built in...)

Low quality (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43089107)

For the most part, open source software is crap. At least all of the .NET or compatible stuff has been. It's flaky shit that's full of bugs and doesn't integrate worth a damn.

I can't say I've tried everything, but after dozens of spectacular failures over the last decade of trying I see no hope on the horizon. It's almost always quicker and easier to roll my own solutions, and that's coming from someone who hates having to reinvent the wheel. The only thing that's ever worked has been tiny one-off stuff that can be effectively isolated from the main programs.

Don't know if it's the developers or dotnet (1)

dbIII (701233) | about a year and a half ago | (#43089821)

I don't know if it's the developers or dotnet, but I've still never seen a multithreaded dotnet app. That's inexcusable when some of them probably even had a multicore handheld gaming console such as the Nintendo DS in their early years at school.

Re:Don't know if it's the developers or dotnet (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090121)

I dont think that is a result of either the developers or .Net, and more a result of your investigations. Most of my apps are multithreaded, as are the things I look at - and it got a whole lot easier with Task, async and await.

Re:Don't know if it's the developers or dotnet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43090607)

I don't know if it's the developers or dotnet, but I've still never seen a multithreaded dotnet app. That's inexcusable when some of them probably even had a multicore handheld gaming console such as the Nintendo DS in their early years at school.

Nservicebus.com

Re:Don't know if it's the developers or dotnet (1)

tgd (2822) | about a year and a half ago | (#43092359)

I don't know if it's the developers or dotnet, but I've still never seen a multithreaded dotnet app. That's inexcusable when some of them probably even had a multicore handheld gaming console such as the Nintendo DS in their early years at school.

Its probably just the code you're looking at, or how you're interpreting the code you're seeing. In aggregate, I'd say I very rarely see any software making good use of threading, and its dramatically rarer still to see it implemented correctly. Java code, broadly speaking, I've seen the worst threading-related code in -- probably because it makes it seem easy to use, but doesn't actually do much to make it easy to do correctly.

Its actually gotten markedly better with .NET with the advent of the parallel framework, tasks, and the new async support in C# 4. Its trivial to write multithreaded C# (and, if you don't really know C#, likely hard to spot, too), and its certainly safer. There's also pretty good built-in lock-free concurrency types and things like that.

So much of the .Net ecosystem has moved towards using the newer async patterns, all of which are inherently multithreaded, I doubt there's many C# applications being written that aren't.

But MS Research software is closed source (1)

FithisUX (855293) | about a year and a half ago | (#43090473)

The DNA computing framework for example.

Re:But MS Research software is closed source (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43092385)

A lot of the MSR coding is done in partnerships with other organizations... and as anyone who has tried to relicense software will know -- when you've got multiple people or organizations involved, with differing priorities and gobs of historic code, its damn near impossible to open anything up without massive amounts of work. And when you're doing research, blowing your resources on that is a bad investment. Plenty has come out of MSR and ended up under various permissive licenses, though, via other product groups.

If I understand this article correctly (1)

Presto Vivace (882157) | about a year and a half ago | (#43091747)

FOSS is easier to deal with than GPL. I would have thought that it was the opposite.
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