evelopers tend to be proud of their skills with a particular programming tool. This is particularly true with Visual FoxPro and Visual Basic developers. Visual FoxPro (VFP) developers are proud of their language's strong data access and string handling capabilities while Visual Basic developers are proud of their language's support of most advanced Windows technologies. (See Sidebar: Authors and Support
Visual Studio .NET is the great equalizer, though. Now, both camps suddenly find themselves staring at not one, but two new languages, both equally important and very much foreign to all. While VB developers have a little head start with VB.NET, there's still quite a learning curve. And, as most Visual Studio developers know, VFP is not part of the new Visual Studio .NET platform. While there are a number of reasons behind this (which we will not go into), and while Microsoft has stated that it will continue to support VFP, .NET is here to stay. Many old "FoxFolk," like myself, are more than a bit curious as to what Visual Studio .NET offers, but are not too keen on giving up some of the great functionality inherent in VFP.
|The new VFP Toolkit for .NET provides 225 Visual FoxPro-equivalent functions for both VB.NET and C#. These not only make the transition to either language easier for VFP developers, but they also add a lot of functionality for those already familiar with Visual Studio .NET. (See Sidebar: More .NET Resources for VFP Developers)
|A set of classes is now available that not only help VFP developers get up to speed with .NET, but will also prove very useful for VB.NET and C# developers as well.|
Fortunately, a set of classes is now available that not only helps VFP developers get up to speed with .NET, but also proves very useful for VB.NET and C# developers as well. The "VFP Toolkit for .NET," which you can download for free from GotDotNet
, has 225 different functions for array handling, string manipulation, data and other operations. These functions use the same syntax as the native VFP functions. For Fox developers, this is a great tool! Steve Sawyer, a well-recognized Fox guru, put it this way, "it's like training wheels for .NET!" For other developers, though, the toolkit adds considerable functionality to their arsenal of .NET tools without the cost of development and testing. In short, the VFP Toolkit is for everyone.