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
at an absolute minimum release the struct defs, full API prototypes and pcode docs that the runtime uses for interoperability. Doc/Excel file format specs were released, .NET spec was released. Why not the vb6 specs? Its no longer a matter of code security private companies already have this level of info such as http://www.vb-decompiler.org/products.htm
I hope they bring a new version of Visual Basic 6.0! I hope Visual Basic 6.0 IDE will work on Win 9, if not, Microsoft will have a new scandal and will lose hundreds of thousands of programmers! Visual Basic 6.0, after 12-14 years is, again, in 2014 the most popular programming language.
@Bill Gates @VBteam
Do you remember this?
John Kellgren commented
As a developer of 35-40 years now, I would love to have a totally updated version of Visual Basic to use...
The response commented
This is a response to a question (from a facebook page) of a VB.NET designer: Almost all types of VB6 open source applications are available online. VB6 is used around the world, giant companies, factories, industry in general, scientific research, engineering and so on. New applications are daily designed in this language (2500 of them are open source this year on PSC). Personally I know a nuclear power led by a series of VB6 app's, and it has been recently made. Platform used for VB6 app's are: Win 8, Win 7, ..............
VB6 has always been a phenomena that could not be stopped by Microsoft, they tried frantically to do so and they given up, of course.
@Sav - nonsense. Expertise is a commodity, if you don't have it you can acquire it.
Some say that MS does not have the expertise anymore to bring something as smart as a new version of VB6 (no joke there).
Hey, Amigos commented
Bring back VB6 ! You all know why !
All my Software creation here in the Philippines are made by vb6.
Are we ready for a final answer from Microsoft? We have for the 'worst case' an answer? My answer would be: never again!
Dennis Johnson commented
I didn't mean that.
We should expect at least a reply from an admin, like "we decline, as our decision to abandon VB6 is final" or "we will reconsider".
All we have here is absolute silence.
Miquel Matas commented
Or they have lost VB6 source code... ;)
Miquel Matas commented
The reason MS is not releasing a new version should be that the main vb6 developers should be all retired.... ;)
Dennis Johnson commented
I wonder... The only reason an admin would reply is to comment for "accidental decline"? No interest from Microsoft at all???
YayMS has a great point! Perhaps one reason VB6 was\is so successful is because it is a perfect equilibrium of code and technologies. Crazy easy to create and support applications. Great performance. Very stable when app written well. Easy to learn for newbies. Amazingly potent for seasoned pros. Bravo MS on VB6!
I'd learn my career without an school or college. Only with VB6
Must going on !!!!!
As a contractor I wrote VB6 systems back in 1998 for Manulife Financial (the largest insurance company in Canada)
Still in production today, going strong after 15 years!
TIOBE Index for May 2014 (Visual Basic 6.0 rises, again): http://vb6awards.blogspot.com/2014/05/tiobe-index-for-may-2014-visual-basic.html
And I quote Winston: "Today I open my VB6 Written application with a sense of pride! 12 years after being abadoned, and vb6 cannot be killed, it will live on!"
Now let me get some popcorn and watch the show as they progress...
Today I open my VB6 Written application with a sense of pride! 12 years after being abadoned, and vb6 cannot be killed, it will live on!