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
When I started using VB4/5/6, it was the supremo language which Admins, schools, industry, science labs, gamers, hobbyists (when they can afford it!) etc. all used it. The failure of Microsoft to update this language has fragmented the scene for compilers and the like and made languages such as JAVA, Python, R, Matlab, Labview, etc. flourish further and where some now are classed as being more popular...
I use and continue to use VB6 as of March 2019. Armed with some commercial tools developed as of 2018-2019, I cannot find much of an advantage in using MS Studio 2017 (To which I have a subscription!). By the time this environment starts (using a reasonable PC), VB6 would have been started and a few lines of code written and even compiled! This is something I noticed ever since the introduction of .net platforms in the early 2000s (Former MSDN member by then).
And while I can use VB.net and C#, VB6 is still simply quicker for what I do!
The VB6 product has been deemed finished by the powers that be, so why not sell it on or open source it to the community? There is clearly a big audience for this and which continues to be ignored for some baffling reasons. I hope the above has been experienced by the many.
Well, it turns out that Microsoft did get back to us over at the Developer Community. They told us all to drop dead:
"We understand that you would like to see VB6 updated to support 64-bit apps and Windows 10 APIs. There are several supported and recommended options for building modern applications that support 64-bit and Windows 10 by using Visual Basic .NET: WPF, Windows Forms, and Universal Windows Platform. We do support running VB6 apps on Windows and the VB6 runtime is supported. However, the Visual Basic 6.0 IDE reached end of life in 2008. This product is finished and that decision is closed."
Web Developer commented
There is still a need to upgrade the VB6 programming language. Start by updating it to be compatible with the latest release of VBA programming.
Some VB-like languages to look at include:
https://www.b4x.com/ - the B4X programming environment includes the B4A programming language for Android, the B4i programming language for iOS, the B4J programming language for desktops (Windows, Mac, and Linux including Raspberry Pi), and the B4R programming language for Arduino.
These people have done what Microsoft have refused to do.
Lofaday - 0AV com - new IDE abandoned commented
@John Moreno - Cool but ... what is it? (LLVM .. virtual machine, sure but...?? Doing a google just confused me more)
John Moreno commented
For those wanting a current VB6, I’d suggest looking for something like https://github.com/wqweto/VBLLVM
[Deleted User] commented
The criticisms of VB6 in a nutshell are: Inheritance is not supported; Multi-threading is not supported; DLL ****.
So if you are happy with functional programming, don't need advanced multi-threading (and if you did, would use * anyway...) and don't need to mess around with the registry very often... then what is the problem exactly? None. That is why Office VBA is still popular.
In 2001 there were 6 million VB6 devs but now there are just 200k VB.NET devs and 2 million C# devs.
Poor stats given the rise in the overall number of devs around the world in the last 20 years.
********************* calls the situation fighter pilots (.Net) versus bus drivers (Vb6). Well... how much does it cost to train a fighter pilot compared to a bus driver? How big is the pool of potential fighter pilots compared to potential bus drivers? Get the job done effectively with little training. Doesn't a VB6 style RAD sound like a big win for common sense?
When that suggestion to upgrade VB6 was opened at Developer Community Fiona Nui of Microsoft said on 10-11 that she'd get back to us in two weeks. It's been over two months now and all we get is crickets.
Not that I really expected anything else.
Upgrade VB6 programming
November 25, 2018 Rubberduck v 2.3.0 launched
Rubberduck officially works in Visual Studio 6.0, the glorious, the… legendary VB6 IDE.
That’s right: code inspections, code metrics, all navigation enhancements, unit testing, refactorings, …all your favorite Rubberduck features, in the Visual Basic 6.0 editor.
Rubberduck is an open-source COM add-in that enhances the VB6 Editor, the glorious VB6 IDE… which was last updated well over 20 years ago.
From refactoring tools to code inspections, from the member-level Code Explorer and its ability to organize modules into folders, to the ability to quickly locate and navigate to literally anything that has a name, or the 64-bit compatible Smart Indenter port, or, or, or… Rubberduck’s scope is huge – and that’s only a part of what makes this project so awesome.
[Deleted User] commented
Just bring back Visual Basic 6.0. Save Microsoft by putting this programming language by default on Windows. You really do not have good programmers anymore ?
Vote for VB6 programming here...
Support-Statment für VB6-Exe on Windows-Server 2019 :-)
VB6 Programming & VBA Programming commented
Also see the discussion on
OK I just added a new suggestion to upgrade VB6.
From the notice in yellow on the main page it looks like they're shutting down this forum.
VB6 programming in top 10 languages for Enterprise Application Development...
Visual Basic 6 ..16%
A new release 7 has just been announced.
#VB6-programming #NSBasic-programming #JS-programming
An installer utility to help the installation of the VB6 programming IDE is available at...
It has been tested on Windows 10 v1803
Microsoft support statement for VB6 programming:-
Support Statement for Visual Basic 6.0 on Windows
- Note: The support policy below has been updated with Windows 10 version 1709 support information.
The Visual Basic team is committed to "It Just Works" compatibility for Visual Basic 6.0 applications on the following supported Windows operating systems:
Windows Server 2016
Windows Server 2012 including R2
Windows Server 2008 including R2
The Visual Basic team’s goal is that Visual Basic 6.0 applications continue to run on supported Windows versions.
As detailed in this document, the core Visual Basic 6.0 runtime will be supported for the full lifetime of supported Windows versions, which is five years of mainstream support followed by five years of extended support.
The VB6 runtime will ship and will be supported in Windows 10 for the lifetime of the OS (that is until at least 2025).
The VB6 runtime will ship and will be supported in Windows Server 2016 for the lifetime of the OS (that is until at least 2027).
Time to update VB6 programming
We want VB6 Programming commented
Report finds Microsoft Visual Basic 6 is a top 10 language for Enterprise Application Development.
C++ ................ 46%
Python ............ 25%
Visual Basic 6 ..16%
It is time for Microsoft to update the VB6 programming language.