Visual Studio .NET 2003 Special Edition Now Available

Microsoft announced Visual Studio 2005 Standard edition and Visual Studio .NET 2003 Special Edition today. While the 2005 edition took the headline, it is the Special Edition of 2003 (VS-SE) that is more interesting today.

Visual Studio .NET 2003 Special Edition

The VS-SE is simply a version of Visual Studio .NET 2003 that includes several other products for one price. The other products included are:

  • Visual Studio 2003 .NET Professional Edition — This edition contains Visual Basic .NET 2003, Visual C++ .NET 2003, Visual C# .NET 2003, and Visaul J# .NET 2003. You'll be able to create Windows forms, web-based, mobile-based, and other applications

  • Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition — A copy of Microsoft's newest operating system is also included. This is a full version of the Standard Edition; however, the included license is only for development and testing.

  • SQL Server 2000 Developer Edition — Also a fully functioning edition of the SQL Server 2000 Enterprise Edition database. The license does not allow it, however, to be used in a live server environment.

  • Microsoft Visual Studio Tools for Microsoft Office System (VSTO) — This product gives you the tool you need to create applications that tap into Excel and Word.
  • Certification Books — Four books are included in electronic format for you to use. These are the core books needed to certify within VB or VC#.

  • Exam Voucher — A 50% voucher for one exam is also included

This is all available at an upgrade price of $549 or as a full version for $749 (estimated retail). You can upgrade from a number of products going back as far as version 5.0. You can also upgrade from a number of competitive products. A list of eligible products is available on the Microsoft site.

Visual Studio 2005, Standard Edition

Although announced today, not much additional information was provided regarding the release of Visual Studio 2005, Standard Edition. Microsoft describes this as "a flexible development tool for line-of-business application developers building Windows., Web or mobile applications.". It is expected to offer the ease-of-use that you can find in the Express products, but with the ability to create applications targeted for the different platforms. Most of the express products — which are currently in public beta — focus on a specific environment (Web or Windows).

The Standard Edition will be positioned like previous versions. It will be targeted at the developer who is more casual or occasional.

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Bradley L. Jones


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