VB.NET Express 2010 is technology you can rely on!
Programmers have learned to rely on the "version 2.0" rule over the years. The rule states that you should generally depend on version 2.0 of any really new product because it will take that long to work the bugs out. Besides, version 1.0 might totally flop and you don't want to be left holding the bag. There's nothing to worry about with VB.NET. The underlying Framework technology is all the way up to version 4, and that means that the bugs in the standard things that you need to do have been thoroughly worked out. (Some of the newest technologies, like WPF and WCF still have a little work needed, even though they're in production for mission critical systems now.)
One "bug" that Microsoft has worked out with the .NET Framework and VB.NET Express is how to combine the opposite goals of moving "upscale" to the professional business development world and still stay affordable for students, beginning programmers, and even hobby programmers. Business success for Microsoft demands that they offer products with the performance, sophistication, and of course the huge prices in the corporate world. When I was a corporate software development manager in the old mainframe world, it was fairly easy to justify and purchase software for the mainframe in the price range of $100,000 or so. (In current dollars.) But that one copy might be used by about a hundred programmers. These are the prices that Microsoft wants to charge their most affluent corporate customers. For example, a new copy of the most expensive edition of Visual Studio 2010 - Visual Studio Ultimate - will set you back nearly $12,000! And a corporation might have to buy them by the hundreds or even thousands.
Whoh!! You and I certainly can't afford those prices. (A corporation doesn't buy the software I use, I buy it myself. I'm one of you!)
Microsoft knows that if they want to continue to be as successful as they have been, they must have a version of VB.NET for the rest of us because the people who can't even afford a compiler today will be making those high-dollar purchasing decisions tomorrow.
The result has been the "Express" editions.
- SQL Server Express Edition
- Visual Web Developer Express Edition
and, of course ...
- Visual Basic 2010 Express Edition!
Getting Visual Basic 2010 Express
The "Express" versions are Microsoft's free, downloadable version of Visual Basic designed to get us all hooked on the product. As far as I'm concerned, it worked like a charm. I'm hooked.
Be aware, however, that you do have to register with Microsoft to do any of this. But it really is free. The download address for everything is:http://www.microsoft.com/express/
The next page shows you how to install and get ready to use Visual Basic Express!