Your opinion about .NET

This is a discussion on Your opinion about .NET within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; A few days ago I was at a lecture at my company about .NET. It's not part of my work, ...

  1. #1
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    Your opinion about .NET

    A few days ago I was at a lecture at my company about .NET. It's not part of my work, but since I got interested after a collegue told me that it can be seen as the Microsoft equivalent of J2EE, which I'm currently trying to learn.

    Some quotes I remember:

    "Visual C++.NET has just very little to do with C++, it was better not to call it C++."
    "Microsoft technicians didn't want C#. At a presentation of C# a Microsoft technician showed how, by just changing some keywords and notations, a C# program can be compiled by the Java compiler. It were the marketeers who wanted C#."
    "From a technical point of view, the .NET technology doesn't differ very much from J2EE. In terms of capabilities, they are equal."
    "Microsoft does not guarantee that later versions of the Visual Studio .NET compilers will be compatible with current versions."
    "The only point at which .NET is better than J2EE is it's tooling."
    So from a technical point of view, both .NET and J2EE are very capable technologies and almost equal at that point.

    I was wondering why company would use .NET instead of J2EE? A lot of companies already use Microsoft technologies, so I can imagine they will choose .NET instead of J2EE. But I guess there must be more reasons. Or will .NET not be the success which Microsoft marketing department says it will be in future?

  2. #2
    Davros
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    Although I haven't used .NET, here's my opinion based on what I've read.

    In a sense, .NET is similar to Java in that it compiles to a 'MS Intermediary Language' (MSIL). This is similar to Java byte code. When a .NET program is installed, it is compiled by the installer to native binary. I understand that the aim of this is to provide a level of abstraction between programs, component libraries and the OS. Therefore at the application level, a VB program can call on a library written in C# without having to worry about calling conventions and memory mappings of data types etc. I can see why MS would want to do this.

    MS say that .NET programs run 75% as fast a program compiled directly to native binary, but I don't know how true this is.

    I understand that VB and C# code will can only be compiled to MSIL, while C++ programs can be compiled to MSIL, or directly to binary. I also understand that for VB, MS has significantly changed the VB language for .NET, making most current VB code useless (I don't use VB so I don't know the details).

    .NET also has a lot in common with Delphi and C++ Builder, in terms of design time components. In fact, I understand that the main designer of Borland's VCL was poached by Microsoft to design .NET.

    I can see that with .NET, Microsoft has made it harder for vendors of alternative compilers. In fact, Borland & Microsoft seem now to have differing strategies - .NET & CLX. With Borland CLX (C++ Builder & Delphi 6), the same code can be compiled to both Windows & Linux binaries. However, I guess Borland compilers will always lag behind in terms of latest fashions in visual components on Windows. For example, I will have to wait for version 7 of C++ Builder before my applications can work with XP Themes properly.

    >At a presentation of C# a Microsoft technician showed how, by just changing some keywords and notations, a C# program can be compiled by the Java compiler.

    I don't know how easy it is to convert a C# program to Java, but certainly it appears that C# is a Microsoft equivelent of Java in some ways.

    > The only point at which .NET is better than J2EE is it's tooling

    Don't know about this. I like the Java language, but I find user interfaces built with it are slow (in execution) and look clumsy.

    > Microsoft does not guarantee that later versions of the Visual Studio .NET compilers will be compatible with current versions

    Does this have anything to do with the Beta release of .NET, rather than the first commercial cut.


    In all, I think that .NET could be very successful. Having spent a lot of time writing DLLs in C++ Builder, and getting them to work with VC++ 6, I can see a lot of improvements in terms of compatibility & code maintenance.

    However, I don't think .NET is really anything all totally new or original. MS seem to have 'harvested' many good ideas from both Sun & Borland. I'm not being vitiotic, I'm just saying that Microsoft are good at picking up ideas of others and making a commercial success of them, and they would seem to do it well.

    Anybody out there used .NET? What does everybody else think?

  3. #3
    Aran
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    um... i like java ALOT more than i like anything MS has pooped out. If MS rides Java off the road off a cliff, i am going to be very ........ed. Java is a great language, and i hope that J2EE kicks MSVC++.net's rear. Too bad MS is such a huge multinational waste of space that will no doubt run Sun out of the programming language business if people don't embrace Sun's techs with open arms.

  4. #4
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    I am actually most concerned what will happen to unmanaged VC++ and the mfc library. Sure they say they will support it but my fear is that 2 year down the road they will force everyone over to managed code and the net framework

  5. #5
    the hat of redundancy hat nvoigt's Avatar
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    And that would be bad because... ?
    hth
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