Microsoft releases second, 'experimental' version of .Net 4 Beta 1

Microsoft released its first Beta of Visual Studio 2010 and the accompanying .Net Framework 4.0 back in May. On July 28, Microsoft announced it was releasing a second version of .Net 4.0 Beta 1.

Microsoft released its first Beta of Visual Studio 2010 and the accompanying .Net Framework 4.0 back in May. On July 28, Microsoft announced it was releasing a second version of .Net 4.0 Beta 1.

Huh? That was my reaction when I saw a tweet about it earlier today. (Thanks for that, dotnetangel.)

But, yes, it's true, as Senior Vice President of Microsoft's Developer Division Soma Somasegar blogged today, calling the second version of .Net 4.0 Beta 1, STM.Net (with STM =  software transactional memory), an "experimental" release. Somasegar said Microsoft had made the STM.Net code available for download via the MSDN DevLabs site.

Somasegar explained more about the new release, which is designed with multi-core processing in mind, in his post:

"Transactional memory is a technology that frees developers from worrying about the mechanics of fine-grained locking and synchronization in multithreaded applications by providing transactional semantics for reading and writing to memory.  It enables developers to focus on application logic instead of the details of memory I/O when building multi-core and many-core programs."

The DevLabs STM team added a few more details.

"This is an experimental release of the .NET Framework that allows C# programmers to try out this technology, specifically a particular implementation of STM. We are interested in your feedback on your experience using this programming model. Is it valuable and easy-to-use? Does it provide enough functionality? Are you willing to pay with serial performance losses to gain greater scalability? Our implementation is integrated with the framework and tools, it has been extended to provide coexistence with locks, interoperate with traditional transactional technologies, and safely work with existing code."

Microsoft is expected to deliver the final Visual Studio 2010 and .Net 4.0 code in the spring of 2010.

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