Visual Studio 2005 Express Editions are now free forever

I came across a press announcement and some additional blog information regarding the availability of Visual Studio 2005 Express Editions that I think is really exciting and I wanted to pass it on. When Visual Studio 2005 originally shipped in November 2005, the Express Editions were posted on the web for download and were temporarily made available free of charge for the first year after the release. Today, the Express Edition team announced that the VS 2005 Express Editions will be permanently made available free of charge.

I am particularly excited about this because the Media Center platform team has been using Visual C# Express Edition for some of the Media Center SDK features we are working on (such as the improved project template that I talked about in this blog post), and I think that having a free IDE with all of the features that are offered by Visual C# Express makes it that much easier for folks to get started with Media Center development.

Dan Fernandez has posted some more specific details about this announcement and also about some new Express Edition Starter Kits, training videos and other resources that were released today. I encourage you to take a look at his blog for more in-depth descriptions of the newly released resources as well.