back to article Microsoft .NET updates include C and C++ code in Blazor WebAssembly, release date for Visual Studio 2022

Microsoft has come up with its usual monthly splurge of .NET news, including the ability to compile native dependencies into Blazor WebAssembly, and a release date of 8 November for Visual Studio 2022. The .NET 6 wave – significant since it is a long-term support release – is close to release, with the launch expected at the …

  1. Filippo Silver badge

    Maybe not everyone will think as I do, but I don't consider WPF "dead"; I consider it "done". Put simply, it has all the features I want and then some, except for those that would require an entirely different design. It also has enough inertia that, although they may stop developing it further, Microsoft will be forced to keep it working for the foreseeable future, at least on Windows desktops (which I expect are the main target of most WPF developers). It's thoroughly documented, there's sample code for nearly anything you might want to do, and it doesn't even have many bugs left.

    Given all of that, I don't care much if it doesn't get any further development. To be entirely honest, I have worked with frameworks that get an update every week and have loads of enthusiasts, and although they do tend to have very clever designs and lots of potential, they also tend to be buggy as all hell, poorly documented, and lacking critical features. There's also always a decent chance that new shiny framework will not catch on, and have development stopped before it gets debugged, documented, and completed. Then you'll be in a bad place indeed.

    It's great that work is being done on UI frameworks. God knows the field needs it, and as I mentioned earlier, some of the shortcomings of WPF cannot be addressed with anything but an entirely different design. But I wouldn't look down on mature frameworks as "dead".

    I wouldn't welcome random "improvements" on WPF made just for the sake of changing something. Sometimes you stop working because the work is done.

    1. AndrueC Silver badge
      Unhappy

      I don't consider WPF dead either. We use DevExpress libraries so for most things as long as DE continue to roll-out updates we're happy. We can view WPF as the scaffolding that underpins things in which case updates aren't needed.

      But it's another sad indictment of MS developers. How many UI frameworks have they now developed, and still they can't get it right. And that's despite them being in the driving seat for their targeted platforms.

      I've said this of MS all along - they are very poor at producing future-proof output. I don't know if it's poor leadership, poor design/implementation or a deliberate view-point of 'make them switch away' but whatever the reason it's irritating.

      1. Filippo Silver badge

        There's truth in that. But, on the other hand, compare with the vast majority of web development. How many HTML+JavaScript UI frameworks are there, and how many actually get to the point where WPF is now?

        1. AndrueC Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          I have to admit that very much puts it in to perspective. My #1 reason for wanting nothing to do with JS is because of the plethora of libraries and how so many are created, developed then dropped because the developer got bored.

        2. captain veg Silver badge

          Re: How many HTML+JavaScript UI frameworks are there

          Just the one that matters. Sometimes called "the web platform" or just HTML5. You can add your own utility functions to cover the boilerplate stuff.

          -A.

    2. elsergiovolador Silver badge

      I was hoping they would port it to Linux and macOS. It's probably one of the few frameworks that you can quickly get up and running and get something useful running.

      It's a shame. Probably that's why got shelved.

      1. AndrueC Silver badge
        Happy

        Xamarin covers all our non Windows platforms and while it's not the same it's very similar. MVVM means we mostly only need different XAML views for desktop/mobile. Sometimes it requires a platform specific viewmodel but not often and we can always inject common code via a shared service.

        We currently use Syncfusion+Xamarin for our mobile solution and it works well enough. We are in the process of looking at switching to DevExpress+Xamarin in the hope that it brings a bit more cohesion between desktop and mobile. It will also reduce our licensing costs.

        A single framework across all platforms would be nice for us but we're pretty happy with using Xamarin and WPF at the moment.

        1. Lyndon Hills 1

          Cross-Platform wpf-alike

          You could look at Avalonia. Not used it but it looks like a possible cross-platform substitute. If you're a heavy user of toolkits like DevExpress, then maybe they would not be compatible, though.

      2. BrownishMonstr

        > you can quickly get up and running and get something useful running

        I've heard people say the same thing about WinForms, but I much prefer WPF with its databinding. I miss WPF, prefer it over Web Development.

  2. Maximus Delfango
    IT Angle

    Another week...

    ...and another product from Microsoft that will be definitely* supported come what may.

    (* possibly definitely**)

    (** maybe possibly definitely***)

    (*** blogged about for a few weeks§)

    (§ ominous silence±)

    (± what product?)

    1. karlkarl Silver badge

      Re: Another week...

      Heh, very true.

      The rest of the tech is pretty much dead on arrival. However Emscripten (C++ to ASM.js/WASM transpiler) is a very cool piece of technology. It works best without any of Microsoft's additional mess.

      I have made an initial port to OpenBSD and it really is just a Clang compiler with a bunch of scripting. However the functionality is fantastic.

      Actually, since Emscripten is under heavy development, you are better off getting it from the upstream vendors rather than Microsoft's obsolete Visual Studio.

      1. Dagg
        Facepalm

        Re: Another week...

        cool piece of technology

        I've been in this industry a looong time and when I see or hear that phrase I run, I don't walk I run... as far away as I can.

        I see this new cool technology being used to solve problems that don't actually exist it becomes like a hammer and every problem is a nail.

        A couple of years pass and we still have this technology in production. It is no longer mainstream and the person who thought it was coool has left and this stuff is still being maintained and no one has any idea how the hell it works and the original developer name becomes a swear word especially for bad or stupid coding.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Another week...

          ^^^ aka the WebLogic Syndrome.

        2. karlkarl Silver badge

          Re: Another week...

          Haha. True.

          Though considering the alternative was Adobe Crossbridge (formerly Alchemy) to bring C and C++ programs to the web (via the Flash VM). Emscripten certainly is cool in comparison.

          Yes, the question does always stand "why run everything through a web browser?". That I can't answer, all I know is that I would rather not have to rewrite anything in a different language per platform.

  3. BART BARFSALOT

    YAPL / Yet Another... : Reinventing the Wheel

    "...there are plenty of developers of business applications who would rather see...Windows Forms improved than dive into WinUI or MAUI."

    No kidding.

    Microshaft's YAPL/UI/etc. extrapolations have been a waste of mankind's time. No one but a self-congratulating weirdo subset gives a Fk about obtuse, limited-scope crap like WPF.

    Sorry, weirdos. Your moms still love you.

    1. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

      Re: YAPL / Yet Another... : Reinventing the Wheel

      I'd also add to that the fact that WebAssembly is just another reinvention of Flash / ActiveX / Java applets, whatever you want to call it.

      The chances I'll be allowing any sites to run any WebAssembly code in my browser are pretty much zero.

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: YAPL / Yet Another... : Reinventing the Wheel

        "Another flash etc" doesn't describe it very well. WASM allows compliation of C++ or RUST code to run in the browser. It still depends on javascript to do anything with the DOM and has a pretty clunky interface between the two.

  4. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    C++ desktop?

    For those of us who have to get real work done, have Microsoft decided what C++ users are supposed to use for desktop apps this time?

    Or do we just stick to nice cross-platform Qt ?

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: C++ desktop?

      Qt or wxWidgets, depending on which fits your way of thinking better.

      Qt has better documentation, but worse governance.

      Everything from Microsoft directly is to be avoided because it'll break next year.

  5. StrangerHereMyself Bronze badge

    Fuming

    I have the feeling that Microsoft's UI offerings are never done. Even Xamarin Forms, which was released almost a decade ago doesn't feel like it's finished. Some of the bindings to the native platforms feel clunky and unnecessary. Google's Flutter feels much more integrated and hides a lot more of the platform's underpinnings from the developer.

    Even MAUI still has the iOS plist and Android's AndroidManifest in there for you to edit by hand. Why can't they just hide this stuff?

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: Fuming

      Can't hide the native because Apple and Google change it too fast for any framework to fully keep up.

      So those platform-specific guts have to stay hand-editable to give you a fighting chance of keeping your application working.

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