I'm really glad to see the VS versions being the full-on professional versions here too. This means that students have access to, particularly, the unit testing tools in the pro versions. This to me is a critically important good habit for software engineering autodidacts, so kudos to Microsoft for this. The programme is open to "accredited schools" or "accredited educational institutions" around the world, so anyone in full-time education should be good to go.
Microsoft Partner Network The Microsoft Partner Network is the main way to form a commercial relationship with Microsoft, and your payback for forming said commercial relationship is reduced cost on licenses. Microsoft tinker with this programme a lot, and the current breakdown of the structure and benefits can be found from here - although frankly the entire programme is pretty opaque.
It's worth stressing that the Partner Network programmes are not just about getting software for free - there are other resources included that are designed to help the member shift more Microsoft licenses. Also, this guide is not intended to be a definitive view to how you navigate the Partner Network - it is really, really complicated - but we should be able to help you grok most of it.
The competencies are essentially your way of demonstrating to Microsoft that you have the chops to do one or more activities off of a prescribed list. The way you demonstrate capability is a combination of having qualified people on staff, getting customer references, passing tests and so on. From the list of available competencies , there are those related to deployment of Microsoft products e.
However analysis of the whole list is out of scope of for this article. A silver competency earns you 25 internal use licenses, whereas a gold competency earns you internal use licenses. You don't get 25 Exchange Server licenses Most Microsoft products are covered you can find the list here , and a more helpful calculator here , but "internal use" is a key operator. Loosely it means that you cannot resell them, nor can you use them for direct revenue-generating activities, commercial purposes, personal purposes or customer training.
An important wrinkle is that you can only use the latest version, so you cannot run Windows XP on this programme - you'd have to upgrade to Windows 7. This makes sense: Microsoft wants you to be out there flogging the latest and greatest. You get five MSDN subscriptions on the silver level, and ten on the gold. However, weirdly, with silver and gold competencies you get MSDN subscriptions that you cannot use for direct revenue generating activities examples they give include developing bespoke software for a fee, or customisation as part of deployment , but you can use them to develop a commercial application which partners sell - emphasis on "sell" is mine, it's unclear how this works if you're giving stuff away free.
You should note that you can "top up" the amount of licenses you get by getting more competencies. Refer to the calculator linked above for more information on this.
All in all, the silver and gold competencies in the Partner Network give you most of the software needed to run a decent sized IT solutions business, and all of the software needed depending on how you actually make money from the software that you write. You also get advisory hours i. What these do is get you licenses for cash without the heavy involvement of the Partner Network via the demonstration of competency through obtaining "competencies". It should be said that with both of these offer elements of the support and sales and marketing help as the full programme - again, Microsoft's payback in this is that you will shift more licenses.
Both subscriptions have the same rules about to internal use - i. Although, weirdly, they also include the rule about not allowing custom software development.
An important wrinkle is, like the silver and gold competency benefits, you have to be running the latest and greatest. You can pay a little extra to get physical media. MSDN is the granddaddy of Microsoft developer programmes.
It's basically "everything". Would you like Windows 3. That is fine. Access 2. Dyanamics AX? MapPoint ? BizTalk ? There's line items on the a spreadsheet that you can download here - although, remember, I said "spreadsheet".
There are eight current MSDN levels. All of them have that lovely, labourious naming that we have come to love from Microsoft. MSDN Essentials is the level that you get when you buy Visual Studio at retail see the blog entry here , and so we'll ignore that. Importantly with the full silver and gold competency levels on the full Partner Network, you get the Visual Studio Premium with MSDN licenses five on silver, ten on gold. On the other two you get the more esoteric read "pricey" products, e.
There are some differences in the software that you get as part of the core subscription, although the core OS and server stuff you are likely to need is there. I'll leave the "Test Professional" edition for a moment. The version of Visual Studio that I use on a daily basis is Professional, and I must admit I've never hankered after anything in the other versions. The key differences are that in Premium and Ultimate have more debugging and profiling tools.
Professional has standard unit testing, whereas Premium includes a few more tools and Ultimate has a whole raft of testing and profiling tools. Next, Premium and Ultimate both have a collection of frankly irrelevant database tools. On the modelling side, with Ultimate you get all of that but not in Professional and Premium and if you're into modelling, why would you not use a stand-alone tool? Ultimate also gives you something called "Lab Management".
In summary, it's not obvious what you get with Ultimate or Premium that's so amazing, or that certainly can't be filled with, as alluded to, third-party tools. This gives us three remaining MSDN variants to look at.
Visual Studio Test Professional is designed for testers who are "embedded" into the test cycle. We haven't spoken much about TFS here but there's a shared toolset for managing the quality aspect of development. Like Test Professional, if you're in this area you're pretty specialised. What web these by can buy microsoft visual studio professional with msdn premium. Just then so as, can even is can have online either very. Now was such plus good so make. Na are only free are is different at all most data.
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