Thursday, May 7, 2009

.NET MF moves to Developer Division

Colin wrote an official statement on the team blog because of the blog rumors in the last hours. .NET MF moves to Developer Division, there are changes taking place on the team but they are all for the good:

“First, the product is moving into the Developer Division (Server and Tools).  This is a great fit for the technology and we are really looking forward to it.  The move means that we will be fully aligned with the rest of the .NET groups and tools in building the uniform programming model from the sensors to servers.

The announcement that we are moving to some form of community direction and development including code access is accurate.  We will investigate how to do that in the near term so stay tuned.  For now however, the current products are available and continue to be supported as before.

I am really excited about the potential of really accelerating the changes in the industry that we see coming.  I hope that you are as excited as I am.  Please let me know if you have any questions.”

Perfect, everything seems to be ok back!! Ok, now I go back working on my new .NET MF project…

.NET Micro Framework Future (not a dead project!!)

Well, you may have heard about changes (see links below) for the .NET Micro Framework. Currently there is NO  official statement from Microsoft available, but some details may already be the direction .NET MF moves to.

It seems that it will not really by “Open Source” (at least not by any of the common definitions of Open Source). The idea is to move it to a business model where source is available for OEMs to add functionality and to better differentiate their platforms and port to new instruction sets and CPU families. Microsoft will maybe make source available so that silicon vendors and third parties can make those ports themselves with guidance from Microsoft and other peers in the community.

This means that .NET MF will not end or be Open Source, as blogs rumors, it will start right now with more performance and more supported CPU families. I hope that I can give my best feedback from my community around .NET MF. There is another post on the .NET MF team blog about .NET MF on top of another OS, really interesting, too.

.NET Micro Framework in the news today:

"The company also acknowledged cuts and major changes in the .NET Micro Framework team. The remaining employees will move to the .NET Framework team, the company said. Microsoft said it will continue to support existing .NET Micro Framework customers under the terms of current agreements, eliminate distribution royalties, make a free porting kit available, and provide access to the underlying source code."

"Microsoft will continue to support existing customers according to any agreements that we have in place with them, and will honor our lifecycle support pledge," Microsoft said. "Forums continue to be available at MSDN. After moving to the community model, new customers will be supported by the community."

Keep watching the .NET MF blog for official story from Colin in the next couple of hours.

The version 4.0 planning is currently in full swing. Make sure to provide your inputs on how Microsoft can make the .NET Micro Framework better and more suited to your needs! Take the feature survey now…

Update: .NET MF moves to Developer Division

.NET Micro Framework Future (Update)

Yes, it seems to be true. Microsoft decided to change .NET MF future. Colin Miller will be posting some official announcement (well, for me it is not an announcement) on the team blog in the next hours.

John Leier (which was my contact person in the past) has left Microsoft already in November 2008, I didn’t get this. Another couple of people in the .NET MF team I couldn’t contact. Pavel could just reach on of them and could confirm on this sad reality.

I hope that no one in the .NET MF team will loose their job. Since years I’m very fascinated of the .NET Micro Framework and what is possible with it. Hopefully I could give my best to still keep this great project alive.

Update: .NET MF moves to Developer Division

Announcing Meridian/P from Device Solutions

meridianp-lowres During the Embedded World 2009 in Nuremberg I could already play with one of the first prototyps of the new Meridian/P from Device Solutions. It was a pleasure for me to be in the boat. Some days ago Device Solutions has announced the Meridian/P official.

The key features are:

  • Same i.MXS processor and memory (4MBytes Flash, 8MBytes RAM) as the Meridian CPU
  • USB connector for powering the board and application download and debug.
  • 0.1″ headers for expansion. Two of these have the same pin-out as the EXP connectors on Tahoe-II.
  • Kit includes USB cable and 0.1″ pin headers you can solder on as required
  • Schmartboard compatible form-factor for rapid prototyping with fine pitch surface mount components

More details are available here. The Meridian/P will be available in less than 2 weeks at US $99, a really good price.

Microsoft to turn .NET Micro Framework to Open Source?

Where is Microsoft cutting jobs of its planned 5000 person layoff? Well, several sites are already writing about it that the .NET Micro Framework is one of the products Microsoft will change future. As far as I understand Microsoft will move the next releases to open source communities but still support older versions in the common support time-frame.

One side effect will be that there will be no license fee in the future for the .NET Micro Framework. People currently working at the .NET MF team will move over to the common .NET Framework. Well, maybe it was a good decision to start with the MF Toolkit at CodePlex. I announced that the MF Toolkit will be added in the next .NET MF release on 1st April – this was a April fools’ Day joke that may get real, now.

(I currently have no official statement from Microsoft.)

Update: .NET MF moves to Developer Division

.NET Micro Framework Porting Kit for free

If you are owner of a MSDN subscription you are able to download the .NET MF porting kit form the MSDN subscriber downloads, now.

To more aggressively promote the adoption of the .NET Micro Framework, we have entered into an arrangement with the MSDN team. Most MSDN subscriptions will now include the latest version of the .NET Micro Framework Porting Kit. While available only as an online download, this product is exactly the same as the one currently available through Microsoft Stores.

Read the full story

New Firmware for Tahoe-II released

Microsoft has released a new Service Pack for the .NET Micro Framework 3.0. A lot of bugs are fixed in this Service Pack for the porting kit. Some of the bug fixes are SD card related, problems developer had often in the last time.

Device Solutions has updated their firmware to include the Service Pack. More details on the Device Solutions blog.