Bring back Classic Visual Basic, an improved version of VB6
The silent majority of VB6 users did not ask for changes that came with .NET
We request Microsoft brings back classic Visual Basic as COM development is back with Windows 8.
David Platt wrote an excellent article about why classic VB still thrives:
We have read all of the comments on this thread and I’d like to thank you for providing your constructive feedback on this issue. Instead of merely repeating our support and migration guidance that has been laid out on http://msdn.com/vbrun, I’d like to address some of your specific comments here.
To play back the feedback themes we’re hearing:
- VB6 is awesome
- VB6 needs to be brought forward and maintained: in a new release or OSS
VB6 was and still is without a doubt awesome. VB6 made developers incredibly productive building a breadth of applications and as a result we have a wealth of applications and passionate developers to this day in 2014. One way I see our mission in developer tools is to empower developers to solve problems. This includes both today’s problems AND the problems of tomorrow. VB6, as you all have stated repeatedly in this thread, is an excellent tool for solving the problems of its day. We also stand behind our decision starting in 2002 to meet the current demands of our developers and the industry with .NET. For the scenarios VB6 set out to do, we see VB6 being “complete”. We feel good about VB6 being able to continue maintaining their applications for the past 15 years. Current needs ranging from distributed applications and services, to web applications and services, to devices, to new architectures and languages, required fundamental changes to the whole stack. We looked at how we could accommodate these needs through incremental changes to VB6 while maintaining its essence, and that was not possible.
To address the modern needs we would need to go far beyond updating the language. We have to remember that VB6 is not just a language. VB6 is a language, a runtime, a platform library, a tool/IDE, and an ecosystem tightly packaged together in a way that made all of them work well together. We’ve worked with many customers on migration from VB6 to .NET and found that while yes, there are language changes, the dominating factor in migration difficulties isn’t the language differences. Even open sourcing the language/runtime wouldn’t solve the fact that VB6 was thought for a different set of problems, and the fact that its strength came from the end-to-end solution provided by all these five pieces working together. Take a change like 64bit, the complete runtime, tools and ecosystem chain would need to be retooled.
So, moving forward what can we do? Where we have been able to help move forward is in our stance around support and interoperability. The VB6 runtime it is still a component of the Windows operating system and is a component shipped in Windows 8.1. It will be supported at least through 2024. This ensures your apps and components continue to run as you incrementally move forward to .NET. The support policy is here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/vstudio/ms788708. There are numerous interop strategies that we developed and evolved to enable incremental migration as you upgrade your skills, described here: http://msdn.com/vbrun.
In summary, VB6 was awesome. We agree. We don’t expect or demand anyone to throw away their code or rewrite from any of our technologies unless it makes business sense for them to do so. We have to innovate to enable our customers to innovate. It is not a viable option to create a next version of VB6. We stand by our decision to make VB.NET and the .NET Framework. We think they are awesome too. It is not feasible to open source VB6 tools chain and ecosystem. The VB6 runtime was last shipped in Windows 8.1 and will be supported for the lifetime of Windows 8.1. Support and interop are great tools to move forward incrementally.
I hope you feel we’ve listened to your feedback and that I’ve explained things well enough that you understand our decision.
Group Program Manager
Microsoft Visual Studio Cloud Tools
@Dean: No, what you have to do to get it to work has to do with the fact vb6 IDE uses some flaky code for memory allocation (remember it was released around the end of win95 begin windows98) and that is the reason it doesn't run properly without some tweaking (it's due to the more restrict security measures when it comes to memory allocation), it's not because MS just deliberately did something to prevent the IDE from working.. Also therefore they have released the XP-mode with Windows 7 professional/ultimate (which is nothing more than a virtual PC, but integrated like it's a windows application), just for these kind of problems..
@SuperDre, yes I know, but the point is MS are doing that spitefully to try to phase out VB6, not for any other legitimate reason I know of.
The fact it can be tweaked and installed proves the point very nicely!
Abraham Barry commented
This is my VB6 application, I got hundreds of users in the hispanic market research industry....Most of my users believe it was fully developed in modern C#, they say it is fast and reliable, errors free
....If the knew....
MIlan Oparnica commented
Dear fellow programmers, I've posted here more than half a year ago.
Just a waste of time !
Lets stop beging !
These great arguments and suggestions are not being listened to. Except for few kids, green enough not to understand the burden of large projects, no one else from the other side cares about this thread.
Thread is a fake ! Microsoft is a fake !
Let's fight back !
We have dosens of ways to do that. There are free virtual machines, emulators, free office solutions, free database solutions, free qt-to-com, java-to-com, php-to-com, xy-to-com libraries, and a lot of other alternatives.
We don't need Microsoft any more. Who cares if the new xy-windows will/will not support vb6 ?
They should care if our software will support their OS ! It's quite useless by itself !
I personaly know thousand companies that will say no to such an OS. How much of them do we know together ?
@Dean: the VB6 IDE isn't officially supported on Windows 7, but it does work (after you do some extra stuff)..
I don't hate Microsoft, proof of that is I recently bought a Microsoft Keyboard and Mouse.
The fact remains terminating VB6 caused a lot of confusion/wastage and now Windows 8 is something I'm not interested in.
If MS terminate support for VB6 then there could be trouble ahead, but conversely if they figure out a way to placate VB6 users then they could regain some support.
The VB6 IDE is not even officially supported on windows 8. Why shouldn't people be fed up?
Lofaday - 0AV com - new IDE abandoned commented
@Dean -- I am glad you brought that potential to my/our attention and indeed I have considered such things myself. However, I suspect using this excellent Microsoft managed forum to discuss that approach would lead to this forum being closed instantly, losing all this valuable debate and connectivity. Unless someone knows a better way to safeguard against that, I urge all to please email me (as my username) for an alternative VB6 Reinstatement news letter (confidential -- no one's email is revealed to others).
I know of no other serious forum on this subject. Karl E Peterson started a popular blog & poll ( http://classicvb.org/petition/signme.asp? ) but by letting it fall into disrepair, it has done us a disservice by further discouraging a cohesive response (I have tried to contact Karl repeatedly). So let's have a backup by private mail to ensure this is not a waste of time. My thanks to Microsoft for allowing this forum so far.
If Micrsoft told us in 1998 that will not support vb6 in 2002, I will never learn vb6, this is waste time, i will go java.
If Micrsoft told developers today that they will not support .net five years later, the young student s and new develpers who will learn .net? no, they will all go to java.
Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd has filed a class-action suit against Microsoft
If they win, remember the company name, someone might be interested in filing a class action lawsuit for the miscommunication around VB6 "updgrade" VB.Net.
Afterall, were companies not led to believe it was the SAME LANGUAGE - the "clue" is in the name.
BUT it wasn't the same language.
MS released VB6 in 1998 and effectively terminated it in 2002, and didn't tell businesses of their plans before they did so.
If they stop supporting for VB6 maybe the SHTF big time at that point.
It didn't in 2002 beacause maybe people didn't really appreciate the sheer stupidity and recklessness of what they did.
@Daniel Jose Dos Santos:
Do you fear that VB6 can come out from your closet and pull your feet while sleeping?
Do you also hate COBOL, plain "C", africans and jews, or is your contemp limited to VB6 and VB6 programmers?
Microsoft's today is not good, but this is not Steve Ballmer's fault, this is bill gates's fault, he do a very bad job before left Microsoft on 2008.
Bill gates kill vb6 and force his developer waste time on .net, bill gates also force his developers to develop winfs and other import product use c#. Vista want use c# to develop kernel, this is of course is a joke, so vista was failed without a doubt.
Because in last ten years, microsoft waste his time on .net, but .net is bad and can't be used to develop OS AND OFFICE this two most profitable products of microsoft.
So .net harm to Microsoft, bill gates let microsoft to invest ten years in .net, this lead to many developer to leave windows's platform, so bill gates harm microsoft, not Steve Ballmer.
Daniel José Dos Santos commented
VB6 should be dead. Don't bring it back, please.
Some good news ???
Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer is to retire.
Is that good news for the VB6 community ?
My preferred way forward would be as follows (in order of preference):
1) Microsoft brings out a true VB7
2) Microsoft releases the VB6 code to open source.
3) A VB7 re-write from scratch
4) Stay with VB6
Unfortunately I think what is most likely to happen is the reverse of that list.
I have similar concerns about putting forward a non-major player language to corporates. But I also have concerns about putting forward a 15 year old 32 bit language.
Lofaday - 0AV com - new IDE abandoned commented
Not wishing to decry the vbforum efforts ref last post, rewriting a VB7 from scratch fails to tick several boxes for me (and has already been attempted/done -- eg: Kbasic, Jabaco, Real). For me, it must be endorsed and backed by Microsoft (or a major player). Many packages are RAD, robust, and powerful -- but unless endorsed as above, I cannot go to my corporate clients and ask them to accept it.
To encourage MS, I can only repeat -- endorse/restore VB6, and I for one could generate 1000s of OS sales for MS (instead of using Wine/Linux). I and my co' turned over millions on VB apps. My customers reject VB.net (due to framework issues mainly) so we use Linux, languish, or reuse VB6 (& dear MS, pls do not break it so it can't work on W9+ so as to force upgrades -- keep in mind I have clients with 1000s of PCs still on XP whose eyes light up every time Red Hat is mentioned.
Dear All -- Please do email me to go on an ad-free Vb6 Reinstatement News Feed -- see my username. I'm only doing this as a follow up to this forum in case it gets deleted.
There is an interesting thread at
I prefer the approach put forward by Olaf Schmidt rather than the Thread Starter, but if Microsoft are going to continue ignoring their VB6 customers this may be the way to go.
Dear Fellow Developers. You guys (MS Team) have not been fair for past few years pushing to buy new products and the results are not impressive. I agree with my fellow writers that you should come back with a Concept called "Old Wine With a New Label" ... Simply Not enough investment ready to support your existing products. Take your Glory seat back ...
We have a large process / machine controller based on VB6, including fast machine vision running under C++ dlls, master motor controls running over Etherent port, etc. This is for equipment that is never connected to the 'net anyway, so we have no need for web-based interfaces. VB6 has worked great for us since 1998, and we have no intention of switching after we tried .Net, VS 2005, 2008, 2010, 2012, etc. Every new version of .net junk runs slower, takes more labor, and the end result is just a waste of money.
If Microsoft brings back an improved version of VB6, I promise we will buy LOTS of licenses.
Bring it back! VB6 is so much easier to use and programs can be developed much faster. Not all developers are developing for the WEB. Windows Form programming is much cleaner and easier to manage in Visual Back 6. Please, Please continue to enhance and make available Visual Basic 6.
Oh yes, unsigned (long)integers that's exactly what I've been missing on several occasions.. I too think if they just make the IDE a bit more Windows 7/8 compatible and some minor tweaks to the language (oh how I would love to have an option like 'Option explicit' but for shortcircuit And/Or's (instead of the ugly AndAlso and OrElse). As long as we can just load the old projects and don't have to tweak too much to get it up and running again in 'VB7' (a bit like the transition from 5 to 6).