Happy 1st Birthday, Visual Studio 2010!

S Somasegar


Today marks the one year birthday of Visual Studio 2010!

It seems not long ago that we had the world-wide launch celebrating the largest developer tool release from Microsoft in many years.  I spoke then about the ability to target platforms like Windows 7, Windows Azure, and Windows Phone 7, about features and updates that enable developers to be more productive, and about the strong improvements we made in Application Lifecycle Management tools for teams.  You responded, and within six months of launch, Visual Studio 2010 usage had surpassed all previous versions. Now, one year later, I’m proud to say that we didn’t stop there and continued to add more value to the product.  Today, seven million downloads later, here is a brief history highlighting some of our developer tool updates since April 2010 for both our MSDN subscribers and non-MSDN users.  These are just some of the highlights of what we’ve made available for Visual Studio users since its launch a year ago.

For All Visual Studio 2010 users:

  • Since the launch of Visual Studio 2010, we have continued to support the platform innovations made across Microsoft. We advanced mobile development with the release of Windows Phone 7 developer tools, including new templates to take full advantage of the WP7 design system and enhanced debugging to seamlessly test mobile applications both locally in an emulator as well as on a device. We continue to provide support to Visual Studio Azure Tools in sync with Windows Azure and released three updates over the past year to ensure Visual Studio cloud developers can access the latest platform functionality. Learn more about Windows Phone 7 development and Windows Azure development.

  • We also continued our initiatives to embrace new software development trends and to help developers be more productive. We released Productivity Power Tools for Visual Studio 2010, which aggregate many straightforward and useful features that help developers perform everyday tasks in Visual Studio more efficiently. The features concentrate on editing, navigation, and other common tasks used while constructing your code. Based on strong demand from our Agile users, we released Visual Studio Scrum, built specifically for Scrum teams with the help from thought leaders in the Agile community. Find Visual Studio Power Tools here. You can find Visual Studio Scrum and many other extensions on the Visual Studio Gallery.

  • We continued to advance our concurrent programming and data access technologies. In the fall we released the Visual Studio Async CTP, starting the conversation about delivering a lightweight asynchronous development experience, enabling developers to write responsive client apps and scalable server apps quickly. The Async CTP also now supports Visual Studio 2010 SP1. Today I’m happy to announce the release of ADO.NET Entity Framework 4.1, which continues to be our recommended data access technology and whose latest version provides support for “Code First” development patterns. Learn more and download the Visual Studio Async CTP, and get the new version of ADO.NET Entity Framework 4.1.

  • We created a new member of the Visual Studio family: Visual Studio LightSwitch. LightSwitch offers line-of-business application builders the simplest way to build business applications for the desktop, web, and cloud. Visual Studio LightSwitch is now available in beta 2.

  • Finally, we spent a great deal of time during the last twelve months listening to customers and responding to your feedback. We received feedback from our Server Core customers on support for .NET 4, and now with Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, that support has arrived. We also received feedback from customers on Visual Studio 2010, and spent most of the winter addressing those issues, completing high-priority scenarios, and improving the overall experience with the spring release of Visual Studio 2010 SP1. You can download Visual Studio 2010 SP1 now.


For Visual Studio 2010 with MSDN subscribers:

  • With the launch of Visual Studio 2010, we introduced a new benefit concept for our MSDN subscribers: the Feature Pack. Feature Pack releases represent ideas we intend to incorporate into future versions of Visual Studio, but make available early using extensibility. There are now five feature packs available to Ultimate subscribers, delivering new capabilities in code visualization and modeling, test lab management, load testing, project management and more. Learn more about Visual Studio Feature Packs for MSDN subscribers here.


  • We launched Expression 4 early in the summer of 2010, bringing professional design tools for building immersive user experiences to developers and designers alike. Since then we’ve made Expression Studio 4 available to our Premium and Ultimate MSDN subscribers for download as part of their benefits.


  • We strive to provide our MSDN subscribers with our latest software early to help them stay ahead of software development trends and be more competitive. Releases of Visual Studio 2010 SP1 and Visual Studio LightSwitch were both made available early to MSDN subscribers. With the release of Windows Azure, we instituted a benefit providing complementary Azure hours to MSDN subscribers. In celebration of Visual Studio 2010’s one year birthday, I have a birthday gift for MSDN subscribers: we’re increasing your complementary Azure hours! See the new list of Azure hour benefits for MSDN subscribers.


Although we’ve been busy over the past year, it seems you, our partners and users, have been busier!  More than 1,600 Visual Studio 2010 extensions have been submitted to the Visual Studio Gallery, with over 4 million extension downloads by users.  Our partners continue to be able to build businesses around Visual Studio, and over the past year, partners have generated over $400 million in revenue from Visual Studio-based extensions.  And many customers have been using Visual Studio 2010 to meet their business goals.  Today there are nearly 200 examples of real customers involving Visual Studio 2010 on the Microsoft Case Studies site.  Learn more about our Visual Studio partners (including how to become one) here, and read some of the Visual Studio 2010 case studies on the Microsoft Case Studies site.

Thank you as you customer and partner for being a part of Visual Studio’s success.  Looking forward to more great things. 


S Somasegar
S Somasegar

Senior Vice President, Visual Studio

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