Free Windows .net Programming Development Tool

Does your school have a requirement to teach a programming language, if so you will most likely choose Visual Basic as the development tool of choice.  This is because it is easy to learn and easy to get results quickly.  However, it isn’t free and can eat quite a bit of your budget just satisfy a small need.

If you have been put off teaching programming because you can’t afford the software, then perhaps this application could help.

The application is called SharpDevelop and is an IDE to the Microsoft .Net framework that is installed on most computers these days.  The application is totally free and is released under the GPL license agreement.

It has a powerful interface almost like the one created for Microsoft Visual Studio and is quite easy to learn.

Because it is a front end to the .Net framework, it gives you the flexibility to program in either native C# (sharp) or using VB .net.

You can find out more about SharpDevelop and download the 8Mb installer from the offical website.

Here are some more of the program features;

  • Forms designer for C# and VB.NET
  • Code completion for C# and VB.NET (including Ctrl+Space support)
  • Folding
  • Code AutoInsert (Alt+Ins)
  • C# to VB.NET converter, as well as VB.NET to C# converter
  • Completely written in C#
  • Compile C# and VB.NET in the IDE out-of-the-box
  • Open source, GPL licensed
  • ILAsm and C++ backends
  • Integrated NUnit support
  • Assembly Analyzer ("FxCop on steroids")
  • Xml documentation preview
  • User interface translated to many languages
  • Everything templated: add new project or file types, or even compilers to SharpDevelop
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