Does Microsoft Buy In To .NET?

Date Published: 16 March 2006

Does Microsoft Buy In To .NET?

Every now and then some high profile personality, perhaps one who once had close ties to Microsoft, about how .NET is really a total failure. How it’s clear that it isn’t going anywhere. That, as proof of these assertions, Microsoft cannot even manage to use it for its own products, so why should we? Personally I think these kinds of articles are rather easy to debunk, and show that their author is either ignorant of the facts (which is unlikely) or has a personal agenda that is coloring his or her opinion (which is pretty much a given – yes, I have one too).

Here is some information I have gathered on approximate numbers of managed code in a few Microsoft products. The point of providing this information is simply to show that yes, there are in fact .NET developers working at Microsoft, and yes, they are building actual shipping products.

Managed Code

  • Visual Studio 2005 – 7.5 million lines
  • SQL Server 2005 – 3 million lines
  • BizTalk Server – 2 million lines
  • Visual Studio Team System – 1.7 million lines
  • Windows Presentation Foundation (formerly Avalon) – 900,000 lines
  • Windows Sharepoint Services – 750,000 lines
  • Expression Interactive Designer – 250,000 lines
  • Sharepoint Portal Server – 200,000 lines
  • Content Management Server – 100,000 lines

Another great one I don’t have stats for is CRM 3, which is written almost entirely in .NET. And of course this doesn’t even go into things like ASP.NET, which is itself written in .NET.

Given the fantastic growth of .NET adoption over the last 5 years (sorry, no figures handy, but it surpassed Java a couple of years ago and has retained its lead) and the tremendous improvements in the framework and IDE that have come with version 2.0 as of last year, I hardly see .NET as a product on its way out. Maybe I’m just being blinded by how closely entrenched I am in .NET development and community, but I don’t think that’s the chief explanation. I think there is some truth in the statement that .NET is alive and well and continuing to improve.

Steve Smith

About Ardalis

Software Architect

Steve is an experienced software architect and trainer, focusing on code quality and Domain-Driven Design with .NET.