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Microsoft has released early code for its Ruby-on-.NET scripting language during a week of actively courting developers and community feedback.

Four months after announcing IronRuby, Microsoft has released source code for the .NET scripting language under the Microsoft Permissive License (MPL). Microsoft is also accepting source code contributions to the IronRuby libraries.

IronRuby and its libraries will be offered to the community's RubyForge site by the end of August, for download and further contributions.

Participation in IronRuby is only going so far, though - at least for now. Community contributions to the Dynamic Language Runtime (DLR), which let IronRuby (plus Microsoft's IronPython) run inside the .NET Common Language Runtime (CLR) without being compiled, are not being accepted.

John Lam, who built the RubyCLR for writing .NET applications using Ruby and was last year hired by Microsoft, blogged: "Since the DLR will ship as part of the CLR in future, we cannot accept contributions into the IronRuby complier, at least initially. However, once the DLR matures and reaches 1.0 status with fully supported public interfaces, we will fully open up all parts of the new IronRuby project for external contributions."

S. Somasegar, corporate vice president of Microsoft's developer division said: "We will... be accepting external contributions to IronRuby libraries initially and expanding that offering to the entire IronRuby compiler once the Dynamic Language Runtime reaches 1.0."

The IronRuby release comes in the week of the O'Reilly Open Source Conference (OSCON), where Microsoft is making a heavy play to engage with the open source faithful. A range of Microsoft executives will deliver keynotes and hold sessions on open source, scripting and on Linux's interoperability with Windows.®

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