Treading on thin ice


I wasn't sure if I should comment on this, but the power of Agile and good programming compel me. I love TestDrive.Net. I've shown it to my group on more than one occasion and will tell anyone who will listen about it. Yes, the next version of Visual Studio is greatly improving the test-first experience, but in the meantime this is without a doubt one of the best tools you can buy for coding.


I can't argue that Jamie is in the right - he's definitely not. The EULA for VS Express clearly states that you cannot write extensions for the free version of the application. At the same time, I believe test-first development is crucial to learning to be a good programmer, and depriving hobbyists of this wonderful extension is cruel at best. I don't know what the solution is, and I'm definitely not a lawyer, but I really hope everyone can come to an amicable end to this situation.

Comments (4)
  1. Bil Simser says:

    Stop spreading FUD. Where does it say in the EULA that you cannot write extensions? It says you cannot get around "technical limitations" but to me that doesn’t equate to writing an addin.

  2. Casper says:

    FUD? I must be mistaken somehow .. the extensibility limitation is clearly stated in the product’s EULA,  all the online documentation, and in the online content. There is a pretty specific example here: http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/vstudio/aa700921.aspx. Specifically no macros, no add-ins, or packages.

    Regardless, you seem to have missed the point I was trying to state. I think TDD.NET is a great add-on to VS and hopefully there is some way we can make it work for the hobbyist community. However IANAL and i don’t speak for Microsoft so we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.

  3. Doug Rohm says:

    A product comparison page is hardly a EULA…

    I don’t post this to be argumentative.  The more I think about this issue the more I’m torn. If the only thing MS can use in court against TD.Net is "technical limitations" then I don’t think it will stand up in court, but I’m not a lawyer so who knows.  Frans Bouma makes a good argument though…

    http://weblogs.asp.net/fbouma/archive/2007/06/02/thou-shall-not-work-around-technical-limitations-whatever-they-are.aspx

  4. Casper says:

    Well the EULA is easily available for anyone to read, I just wanted to link to some available information that conveys the idea.

    I really understand how difficult this situation is, and being a firm believer in test-first development I just hope something can be worked out.

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