Microsoft kicked off day two of its Build Conference by talking about new features for the Microsoft Azure Cloud service. The company has invested billions of dollars to build out data centers for Azure around the world, and along with those Azure features, it announced the open-sourcing and free availability of recently acquired cross-platform tools from Xamarin.
Miguel de Icaza, cofounder of Xamarin and now a Microsoft employee, showed off the cross-platform capabilities of Xamarin. Microsoft’s Xamarin acquisition closed 10 days ago, and as of today, Xamarin will be available to all Visual Studio customers at no extra charge. That means all Visual Studio users will be able to build and deploy software to Android, iOS and Windows. Xamarin will be free in all versions of Visual Studio 2015, including free community edition and the Mac version. Microsoft is also contributing the Xamarin SDK to the .NET Foundation as an open-source project.
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On a side note, de Icaza intimated that he had finally completed the longest job interview of his life. His company was acquired by Microsoft earlier this year, bringing to a close the 16-year period since he had left his internship at Microsoft.
The .NET Foundation gained three new members today: JetBrains, Red Hat and Unity. With the release of Xamarin to open source, .NET becomes entirely available to the open-source community, from end to end.
Additionally, Mono has been relicensed under the MIT license. This brings the open-source reimplementation of the .NET environment into the open-source environment in general with only a single license. Previously, the runtime for Mono was dual-licensed: LGPL and commercial. With this change, everything under the Mono umbrella is also under the MIT License parasol. The commercial version of Mono, essentially, no longer exists.