.Net developers can write for Linux using Mono

.Net developers can write for Linux using Mono

Summary: Novell's Mono Program, which promises to allow .Net developers to develop Linux applications, should enable companies to make the best use of their developers

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Enterprises can utilise their internal .Net skills to build multi-platform applications using Novell's open-source Mono platform, which should end up making it easier to get the most out of development teams.

On Thursday, Novell launched a test release of Mono, which is an open-source project that recreates Microsoft's .Net programming framework on Linux and Unix. Mono was designed to allow .Net programmers to build applications that work across Windows, Linux and Unix operating systems. The ability to span multiple operating systems with a single programming model is important, since many companies maintain Windows, Linux and Unix systems.

Steve Gaines, Novell's UK technical director, said Mono will allow an enterprise's developers to write code that will work on multiple platforms -- including Linux, Unix and Mac OS -- even though they only have Windows skills.

"Developers only familiar with the .Net programming environment, and using tools such as Visual Studio .Net, can, without specific knowledge of Linux or Unix or Mac OS or even Netware, write directly for those platforms," said Gaines.

Mark Quirk, head of technology at Microsoft UK's development and platform group, said that if Mono increases the number of skilled .Net developers in the marketplace, then Microsoft will be very happy. But he did say that Microsoft would hope that enterprises won't want to move away from its platform.

"Microsoft will clearly do our best to make sure our implementation is good enough so people will choose our platform," he said.

Mono's promise of increasing developers' productivity was welcomed by Ovum's senior analyst for software development strategy, Bola Rotibi, who said all development managers want to maximise their existing investments.

"If Mono delivers on its promise, it will allow .Net developers to write for other platforms. Anything that increases developers' productivity and capitalises on investments that enterprises have already made is a good thing," she said.

Topics: Apps, Software Development

Munir Kotadia

About Munir Kotadia

Munir first became involved with online publishing in 1998 when he joined ZDNet UK and later moved into print publishing as Chief Reporter for IT Week, part of ZDNet UK, a weekly trade newspaper targeted at Enterprise IT managers. He later moved back into online publishing as Senior News Reporter for ZDNet UK.

Munir was recognised as Australia's Best Technology Columnist at the 5th Annual Sun Microsystems IT Journalism Awards 2007. In the previous year he was named Best News Journalist at the Consensus IT Writers Awards.

He no longer uses his Commodore 64.

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3 comments
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  • i think mono is a blunder. i have been developing for 15 years, last 6 years with java, swithced from delphi and the main reason of the switch was because java let me wash my hands from ms almost altogether. i used java for solaris, palm, linux, win development and i don't see any reason why i should go back to murky waters of win development. i haven't downloaded mono, (or .net) i am not curious about it, and everytime i hear it is mentioned i just smile. :)
    anonymous
  • A Portable Application Environment:

    The effort to establish a portable application environment took a big step forward with this release of the MONO beta. Once again the peasants with pitchforks are readying to storm the Bastille, to demand the Emperor release the prisoners. All prisoners.

    The vast legacy of Win32 application users chained to the Windows platform. And the next generation of .NET framework application users being targeted for the great Longhorn roundup.
    Microsoft pulled out all the stops to prevent Netscape and Java from establishing a cross platform environment developers could reliably write to. Chairman Bill risked the empire to make sure that these efforts to poach on the Windows platform, cannabolizing and pillaging the Win32 API franchise, would at best result in the uncertainties of developers having to hit a moving target. In this regard he succeeded brilliantly. The peasant rebellion was crushed. The franchise has to be protected at all costs. And it was.

    What's interesting about the MONO project is that it doesn't try to carve out a beachhead in hostile territory, porting a new application environment ala Netscape and Java. Instead, they take an approach more similar to the WiNE Project.

    Where WiNE simulates the Win32 API, MONO simulates the next generation Win32 franchise replacement, the .NET framework. A key difference being that while no one
    anonymous
  • I think its great, Im not particularly fond of some M$ stuff but its not a religion and Im not going to shun a technology just because M$ is involved somewhere. Ive been doing Delphi development for many years, Java is just not an option its too slow!!! Always has been and always will be, there are too many layers of abstraction, its object model is poorly implemented. The Delphi VCL has stood the test of time and guess what Anders Heijsberg who architected the VCL has also done the framework for .NET. Why have they both worked? Because he started with a blank sheet of paper and spend time *planning* the design, perhaps something Sun should have done so they wouldnt have to keep pushing out new releases every other week! Java sucks big time.
    anonymous