Team Developer 6.0, the latest version of Unify’s rapid application development product, introduces a new compiler and runtime that enables organizations to move their Win32 applications to the .NET Framework with just the proverbial flip of a switch and no recoding, the company announced today.

Unify’s journey to .NET began in 2006 with the acquisition of Gupta Technologies. Prior to that, Unify was focused on relational databases, and Gupta’s Team Developer (known as SQL Windows at the time) has some database connectivity features and controls, along with application development capabilities, according to Duane George, CTO of Unify.

“Developers wanted the ability to use Team Developer to leverage the .NET wave that was starting at that time,” he said. So, after adding Unicode support and a new user interface in the interceding years, Unify was also building a foundation to move into the .NET world.

Giving that effort a boost was another acquisition (Active Data Corp., purchased in 2007) that brought a powerful version of the Team Developer runtime written in .NET into the fold, George said. “It emulates everything in Team Developer, and we built a new compiler that looks at an application and creates [Microsoft Intermediate Language] output for the runtime.”

The IL output can run as a .NET Windows Presentation Foundation application for use on a desktop, or into a XAML-based browser application, with the simple toggle of a radio button, George said. “We found that the Win32 apps were running 8 to 10 times faster on .NET than on Win32, because IL is not an interpreted language.” Team Developer 6.0 wraps ActiveX and COM controls so they continue to run in the .NET environment, he added.

Team Developer 6.0 can be used to migrate Win32 applications not only to NET, but also to the cloud for use as software as a service, George said.
Key new features in the development environment are .NET Windows Presentation Foundation controls for creating rich GUI applications, native .NET application debugging, open database connectivity for data access, and Office automation to enable integration with Word, Excel, Outlook and the rest of the Office portfolio, the company said.

Also, the RAD product includes task-management features, and can provide reporting for development teams looking to move applications written in earlier versions of Team Developer to the latest version.