Thursday, November 10, 2005

Who was Microsoft kidding when they promised to end "DLL Hell"? The long dark night of the SQL Server 2005/Visual Studio .NET 2005 beta produced a series of seeming incompatible .NET frameworks. I didn't do much beta testing with the 2005 bits, but when I did, I did so from the safe confines of various VMWare sessions. I'm now looking at some automated build tools and one of our developers suggested MSBuild. That's the last thing you would want, a build tool that will be dependant having the appropriate runtime installed. Plus I want something that supports more than .NET compilers, we are still building Delphi Win32 apps here as well as .NET assemblies.

On a slightly separate target, why RSS Bandit is such a resource hog? I loved the interface, but it would bring the performace of my PC to a flying stop. I just started using Omea Reader, and it plays well with others much better than RSS Bandit did.

....Microsoft promosed that DLL Hell would go away, but with the .NET Framework betas, they dropped us into the biggest DLL Hell I’ve ever seen. I can’t uninstall MSH from my system because I installed the .NET Framework 2.0, which required that I uninstall the beta versions. The MSH uninstaller requires the beta framework, which I uninstalled, so I’m stuck. I can’t install the release version of MSH. This sort of thing is just silly, and I thought it was a problem that we’d solved. (To be fair, they did promise that this won’t be a problem for release versions of the framework, but how many millions of times were the betas downloaded?)

from Stevex's blog


  1. Christopher,

    MSBuild is a general purpose build platform - and out of the box, it only supports the managed build process. However, there is no reason why you wouldn't be able to use it to build pretty much anything you want.

    To put things in perspective - we used MSBuild in the Microsoft build labs to build Visual Studio 2005. The extensibility model provided by MSBuild can be used for customizing and extending the build system any way you wish. Toolability has also been a key design goal - and we expect to see other tools out there to start using MSBuild as the build platform of choice.

    Faisal Mohamood
    MSBuild Team (

  2. I'm sure you can extend MSBuild to build anything, but it doesn't do that out of the box. Which comes down to having to spend more working on the build tool than I want to do. My development tools ar pretty heterogeneous. The last product that I shipped had a server written in Delphi, a front end in ASP.NET, and .msi installers generated with Wise. And Vault is the source code control system. I want one tool that will build the whole thing with email notification.

    I can do this with FinalBuilder, out of the box. I downloaded it last Friday afternoon. and after an hour or so, I could do exactly want I wanted to do. I'm sure that MSBuild could do the same things, but just getting the Delphi bits to compile from a command line would take more than a hour.


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