Feeds

Microsoft donates .NET Micro Framework to open source

Apache mercy killing

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Microsoft has released part of its .NET Framework - the part for internet-connected smart devices - into the open-source community.

The company said on Monday that it's releasing source code for the .NET Micro Framework under an Apache 2.0 license. Microsoft is also creating a community of "interested and involved members to help shape the future direction of the product." The community's web site was still under construction at time of the announcement.

Gates and friends with Spot watches

Happier times: Bill Gates and friends wearing

an early version of the .NET Micro Framework

But don't get too excited. You won't be getting the full .NET Micro Framework stack, as Microsoft's open-source code donation will lack the TCP/IP stack and cryptography libraries. Microsoft said the former has been licensed by a third party, so Microsoft can't release the code, while the latter Microsoft has decided is "used outside of the scope of the .NET Micro Framework." You'll have to use your own alternatives.

Microsoft's embrace of open source follows the company's announcement in May that it was, ahem, changing the .NET Micro Framework's business model after it announced it was cutting 3,000 staff. The company said that it would kill off royalties from distribution of Framework and that the platform would become a community-supported project.

Program Manager Colin Miller vowed Monday on Microsoft's Port 25 blog that Microsoft will remain actively involved in NET Micro Framework's ongoing development, working alongside the community.

The .NET Micro Framework never lived up to the early promise. It morphed out of the Smart Personal Objects Technology (SPOT) unveiled by Bill Gates during his keynote address at the January, 2003 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The idea was for internet-connected watches and coffee makers capable of updating you on the weather and your stock while while giving you the time or brewing up a cup of instant. After from some initial interest, though, the watches and coffee makers never really clicked.

In an earlier blow to SPOT and the .NET Micro Framework, Microsoft announced last month that the data-network-powering SPOT-based services known as MSN Direct will finally be switched off in 2012. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
Intel's Raspberry Pi rival Galileo can now run Windows
Behold the Internet of Things. Wintel Things
Linux Foundation says many Linux admins and engineers are certifiable
Floats exam program to help IT employers lock up talent
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.