You have reached the blog of Keith Elder. Thank you for visiting! Feel free to click the twitter icon to the right and follow me on twitter.

Source Code for .Net Framework Released

Posted by Keith Elder | Posted in .Net | Posted on 03-10-2007

No the sky isn’t falling and it isn’t snowing in Mississippi but ScottGu, GM at Microsoft, just dropped a bombshell.  The title says it all, the source code for the .Net Framework will be released with the .Net 3.5 and Visual Studio 2008 release.

The source code will be released under the Microsoft Reference License and will include a lot of the base class libraries to start (System.IO, System.Collections, Asp.Net, Winforms, Ado.Net etc.   LINQ, WPF and other libraries will follow later.

What does this mean for developers?  Well it means that when you are debugging you can debug all the way down into the actual source to see what is going on.  Are you kidding me?  This is huge!  Huge I say!  This is a different Microsoft folks than we were use to in years past no doubt.  

What else would this mean?  I’m not sure, but it is a step in the right direction that is for sure.  This means the Mono project may not have to work as hard to figure out what the framework is really doing and the Reflector utility (a tool .Net devs use to view disassembled source code) will be made use of less.

Will the community be allowed to submit patches?  ScottGu didn’t discuss this and I’m not even sure how that would be accomplished (although I have some ideas, cough cough CodePlex).   


For clarification, this isn’t “open source” it is just the source code is made available.  Notice I didn’t use the word open anywhere. In other words you can’t change it and recompile it.  You just have access to the source, but nonetheless, still very cool.

Comments (2)

If anything it should help the Mono project figure out better what is going on instead of relying on disassembled code with the Reflector tool. The big big big benefit is obvioulsy debugging and optimization, as well as I would imagine a lot of folks learning from how the framework was written.

Hopefully it’s not some ploy to “pollute” Mono 🙂 Also concerned about people starting to code around the implementation then the actual design. But yeah very cool, a HUGE step for Microsoft.

Actually my first reaction was “What the hell are they thinking?”

Write a comment