I dislike “me too” posts, but news like this has to be made an exception.
Microsoft has announced that the Visual Studio Express Editions will be free for 1 year. I am really excited for the hobbyist, student, and novice that is interested in development but can’t justify the purchase of the IDE. This gives them an opportunity to try on the developer hat at no cost and see if it fits well for the long term. This is a great marketing campaign that is a win-win for everyone.
“We are announcing a pricing promotion for Visual Studio Express – for the first year after the products launch on November 7th, 2005, customers will be able to visit MSDN to download their copy of Visual Studio Express for free!**
Our customers are very excited about the release of these products, so this limited-time download is our gift to the hobbyist, student, and novice community – we’re excited to see the amazing applications they’ll build!
Note that SQL Server 2005 Express Edition is also a free download. The free pricing for SQL Server Express is not limited to the same one-year promotional period as Visual Studio Express.”
[**We plan to launch the non-English versions of the Express products sometime within 2-3 months after the English version launches on November 7th. The same pricing promotion will apply to these products, and will remain in effect for one full year after their respective availabilities.]
Learn more here.