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    Eugene shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    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.

    Paul Yuknewicz
    Group Program Manager
    Microsoft Visual Studio Cloud Tools

    8897 comments

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      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        PERFECT – PERFECTION is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE ENERGY is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE THOUGHTS is Visual Basic 6.0.
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        PLEASURE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE ATTITUDE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE WORDS is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POWER – POWERFUL is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRACTICALITY is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRECISION is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PREPAREDNESS is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRESENCE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRESERVATION is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRIVACY is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PROACTIVITY – PROACTIVE is Visual Basic 6.0.
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        PROSPERITY PROSPEROUS is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PUNCTUALITY – PUNCTUAL is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PATIENCE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PROUD is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PLEASED is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRESENCE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PLAY – PLAYFUL – PLAYFULNESS is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PARTICIPATION is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PURPOSE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PICK-ME-UP is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PRONIA is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PIOUS is Visual Basic 6.0.
        PUPPIES is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POLITE is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE MIND is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE THINKING is Visual Basic 6.0.
        POSITIVE WORDS is Visual Basic 6.0.
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      • VB6 Programming commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Interesting that Anders Hejlsberg has abandoned C# (his clone of Java) and moved to TypeScript (his clone of JavaScript).

        C# is now only half as popular as JavaScript in the Stack Overflow 2018 survey.
        JavaScript is #1, C# has fallen to #8 in just 1 year.

        https://insights.stackoverflow.com/survey/2018/#technology

        Interesting too that Stack Overflow CEO Joel Spolsky describes VB6 as "the most perfect programming environment ever created".

      • VB6 Programming commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Far too many of the posts here are from those who see programming as an end in itself.

        It isn't, it is merely a method of achieving the desired result. Who needs complex, high maintenance software ? The aim of any software development tool is to make development quick and easy - that is exactly what the VB6 programming language offered and still offers.

        Some prefer to use more complex and slower software to do the same job.

        In the last 15 years Microsoft have lost their way, offering complex, slower and bloated software which inevitably loses popularity.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        After 6 versions and 6 service packs for the 6th version, Microsoft didn't "abandon" anything.
        In the software world you either adapt or become irrelevant. VB 6 was becoming irrelevant as Java and the web began to grow up around it.

        It's really that simple.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It was clear from the beginning that VB6 was a poorly designed beast masked by its apparent simplicity. It wasn't simple, it was a complete mess under the hood.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Any VB6 programmer who whines that it so difficult
        to switch to VB.Net perhaps should consider a career
        change instead.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        One good reason that VB6 shall and will never come back

        "Just like the last year’s results, this year, Visual Basic was again listed as the most dreaded programming language. Just in case you’re wondering what’s the meaning of most dreaded, it shows that a high percentage of developers who’re currently using the technology aren’t interested in continuing to do so.
        Visual Basic was followed by VBA, CoffeeScript, VB.NET, and Matlab. "
        source: https://fossbytes.com/most-loved-and-most-hated-programming-languages/

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Visual Basic6 is not just a bad language -- it is a hideous jumble of traps and annoyances, a short step up from Intercal in usefulness.

        1. Awful declaration syntax and requirements. Variables must be declared but cannot be defined at the same time. Every interesting object is a "variant", which is a useless declaration.

        2. Prison-like development environment. I can't develop code that's not tied to a document somehow; I can't even put the code in source control except by copying the text out into a separate file, then copying it back in for use. I can't leave one routine partially written while I investigate something else, because the editor will go crazy.

        3. Active hostility to polymorphism. If I want a function to work for numbers, I have to make sure those numbers aren't wrapped in a 1x1 array (a variant!) because VB will not unwrap them for me. But I can't just test whether a function input is a variant, because that is too general.... there is no good solution to this.

        4. Complete lack of libraries. Methods that would be standardized in serious languages, or built directly into the language, are just missing. Where are my hash tables, deques, etc? Where are sort and unique and filter? Where is map? They are nowhere to be found, and I can't supply them except by loading documents over and over into the catastrophically bad IDE, see (2).

        Any of these would be a show-stopper for serious consideration of VB. (3) is the most painful to deal with, but I guess (4) is actually the most serious.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        There will be no update of VB6 and it would be ridiculous if so.

        I agree there are many applications developed in VB6 in the 90s. But it is not logical, practical or realistic to think that would be the norm in the future.
        Operating Systems are evolving and will not be held up by archaic code. It sounds harsh but it is a fact.

        Sorry

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        No one is going to use VB6 software.

        If it didn't happen 15 years ago, it won't happen now.
        The rules that applied then apply now. Companies do not pay to rewrite all their applications in the OLD and IRRELEVANT technology which does NOT function any longer.
        And VB6 applications generally run slower. It makes no sense.
        Only a developer living in an idealistic fantasy world thinks that and asked to bring back VB6.
        Some posters here have no knowledge or experience to understand why legacy applications SHOULD simply get rewritten in the latest and coolest technology, like NET. There are fundamental reasons why everyone is still talking about NET.

        Idealistic and simplistic notions of how organizations operate will not change that.

      • VB6 Programming commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        There are far too many posts here from those who see programming as an end in itself.

        It isn't, it is merely a method of achieving the desired result. Who needs complex, high maintenance software ? The aim of any software development tool is to make development quick and easy - that is exactly what the VB6 programming language offered and still offers.

        In the last 15 years Microsoft have lost their way.

      • VB6 Programming commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Why was C# and .Net developed?

        Java was growing. So it wasn't a bad idea that Microsoft also offered Java, which they did with J++ (under license from Sun, the then owner of Java). But, being Microsoft, they made a version of Java that wasn't quite Java-compatible. Sun initiated litigation, effectively killing J++ (and Microsoft had to pay Sun $20million).

        Microsoft then launched .Net (as the nearest clone of Java they could legally do). C# was developed as the primary language for .Net.(C# is almost an imitation of Java).

        So far nothing that a VB6 developer would take issue with.

        The issue for Visual Basic developers is that Microsoft also developed a basic-like language for .Net (VB.Net). Most VB6 developers were expecting an updated VB6, instead they got an incompatible language.

        This incompatibility was a major business/marketing failure by Microsoft. Developers may argue the technical pros and cons of the two languages, but the business issue was that Microsoft didn't take forward their developer base (VB6 was Microsoft's most popular language at the time). Microsoft stated (years later) that the uptake of VB.Net had been disappointing, only 1 in 3 VB6 developers moved to .Net (and many of those to C#). A similar number moved to non-Microsoft languages (including Java).

        To lose so many developers was a Microsoft failure. If you can't take most of your customer base with you you are doing something wrong.

        Microsoft had over 6 million developers using VB6 programming. Microsoft lost 4 million of these in its failed attempt to compete with Java.

        Now Microsoft claim to have just 2 million developers using .Net, split between C#, VB.Net and F#.

      • VB6 Programming commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Why is C# failing ?

        1) Win Forms and Web forms And WPF are all legacy now. Microsoft have abandoned them and the developers that use them.

        2) The .Net Framework is legacy too. Again Microsoft have abandoned it and the developers that use it.

        3) Now Microsoft tells developers to use .Net Core. But .Net Core doesn't have a GUI. Microsoft makes development far more difficult in the forlorn hope that Linux developers will adopt .Net.

        4) C# isn't a sensible choice for non-Windows applications. There are other languages more suitable. Notably JavaScript for Web and Mobile apps.

        5) New developers see nothing interesting in C#. It is just a C-like language with no GUI. There is no reason to use it. Nothing special. Just out-of-date.

        6) .Net doesn't have a sensible offering for iOS and Android development.

        .

        .Net Framework is abandoned and .Net Core isn't popular.

        Anyone deciding to stay with C# and .Net must be very,very brave.

      • VB6 Programming commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        VB6 programming and .Net...

        "In fact the only thing that .NET did wrong was to kill off VB6 - it should have been allowed to coexist for those wanting to use it. Instead Microsoft provided as its replacement VB .NET, which added nothing that C# didn't already have."

        http://www.i-programmer.info/news/89-net/11758-microsoft-asks-for-help-on-the-future-of-net-where-do-we-start.html

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