As for what will be added to VFP after version 9.0 is released, it is too early to discuss this at the time of writing this article. The VFP team welcomes feedback on how we can improve our developer tools in the future based on what is disclosed for VFP 9.0 and Visual Studio 2005. Details of how we enhance Visual FoxPro, how it is packaged, what it is called, and when updates will be released probably will not be disclosed until the first half of 2005.
A common question is how Visual FoxPro 9.0 relates to Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005. We improved the XML support in VFP 9.0 which will also improve .NET interoperability. We also added some new data types that will also help for use with both SQL Server 2000 and SQL Server 2005.
VFP 9.0 is scheduled to be released in late 2004, and the schedule for Longhorn is not announced yet. We can only discuss how VFP relates to Longhorn once Longhorn is nearly complete and close to being released.
Although we will not be including native PDF support in Visual FoxPro 9.0, we are working to make it very easy for third parties and FoxPro developers to create a variety of solutions for add-on PDF output support.
We do not have any plans to extend the 2GB database size limit in Visual FoxPro for many reasons, including the 32-bit architecture that already exists within the product. Besides using SQL Server 2000, an additional option is upcoming: SQL Server 2005 Express extends the 2GB limit of MSDE to 4GB total.
Although Visual FoxPro will remain 32-bit and will not use 64-bit addressing natively, it will run in 32-bit compatibility mode. Visual Studio 2005 will support creating native 64-bit applications.
It is up to developers and installing organizations to decide which .NET language is best for them. C# is generally for developers who like to write and control all of their code. It's very source code-centric. Visual Basic is for RAD (rapid application development) and ease-of-use while providing access to the full power of the .NET Framework. For a high level overview of the language differences, refer to the Visual Studio Roadmap at http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio/productinfo/roadmap.aspx.
Visual FoxPro 9.0 Availability
Until March 31st, 2005, the free public beta of Visual FoxPro 9.0 will be available for download at http://msdn.com/vfoxpro. The beta can be installed side by side with Visual FoxPro 8.0 or previous versions of Visual FoxPro. There is a time bomb built into the beta that expires March 31st, 2005. Do not contact technical support for questions, as the public beta is unsupported and is to be used as is.
Visual FoxPro 9.0 is scheduled to be released to manufacturing near the end of 2004 and will be included in all levels of MSDN Subscriptions (Universal, Enterprise, and Professional). For more information about MSDN Subscriptions, refer to http://msdn.com/subscriptions/prodinfo/levels.asp. MSDN Subscription members will be first to obtain the released version of Visual FoxPro 9.0 (within a few business days of release to manufacturing). The full product, upgrades, and academic editions will be available approximately six to eight weeks after they are released to manufacturing.
Visual FoxPro 9.0 pricing will be the same as it was for Visual FoxPro 8.0: the full product is $649, the upgrade is $349, and the academic edition is $75. For a limited time, a $50 rebate will be offered with Visual FoxPro 8.0 (for the upgrade version only, in U.S. and Canada only) for licensed users of Visual FoxPro 8.0.
To obtain Visual FoxPro, MSDN Subscriptions, FoxPro gear, and more, go to http://FoxToolbox.com. Additional information about Visual FoxPro 9.0 including white papers, samples, and links to third-party resources can be found at http://msdn.com/vfoxpro.
Visual FoxPro 9.0 System Requirements
To install Microsoft Visual FoxPro 9.0 Professional, we recommend:
- A PC with a Pentium-class processor
- Windows 2000 with Service Pack 3 or later operating system
- 64 MB of RAM; 128 MB or higher recommended
- 165 MB of available hard disk space for a typical installation, 165 MB maximum; 20 MB of additional hard-disk space for Microsoft Visual FoxPro 9.0 Prerequisites
- A CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive
- A super VGA 800 X 600 resolution monitor, or higher, with 256 colors
- Microsoft mouse or compatible pointing device
|The Visual FoxPro Team|