Upgrade to Visual 2003 or not?

Posted on 2004-04-14
Last Modified: 2010-04-17
I currently have Visual 2002.

I've been on the MS site, but can't seem to find any info on the new features in the 2003 version.

Is it worth upgrading to and does it have online activation?
Question by:ecentrik
LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 10826038
There are essentially NO differences between the two versions - If you must pay for the upgrade, then it is NOT a good idea.  The differences are in such areas as:

in VS 2003, when you type If...Then  and press the Enter Key, VS will automatically add the closing End If line for you.

Similarly with "For x = 1 to 10"    the Next line will be inserted for you.

Thses are essentially cosmetic differences, and not worht paying anything extra for.  


Expert Comment

ID: 10826719
arthur, can you write applications for the 1.1 version of the .net framework in vs 2002?
LVL 27

Accepted Solution

Dabas earned 125 total points
ID: 10826833
Hi ecentrik:
I did not get to program much in the 2002 environment before I switched over so I cannot speak out of first hand experience.
I do know that a program written in 2003 is NOT backward compatible with 2002.
Something similar to what happened when VB switched from VB4 to VB5. A VB4 program converted to VB5, but once written in VB5 there was no way back.
So to answer your questions: If you need to share code with other programmers, then 2003 probably will eventually become a must. I assume there are more changes than what Arthur has mentioned, and having VS automatically write the closing command really is a nice feature... but not worth spending $1000 extra either.
There might also be an issue with distribution. As Diego has pointed out, VS2002 will create Framework 1.0 executables.
I am not sure, but I think that it means that the end user, who probably already has Framework 1.1 installed, will have to install 1.0 on top of it!

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Expert Comment

ID: 10826943
Diego good question.  We have had strange issues here where we cannot get 1.0 Framework solutions to compile and work in VS 2k3.  (This is even with tweaking the compiler settings!)  To get around the problem we had to dual install both 2k3 and 2k2.
LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 10827878
"can you write applications for the 1.1 version of the .net framework in vs 2002?" Yes, absolutely.

Make sure that you have the Framework Version 1.1 installed, and off you go.


Expert Comment

ID: 10828130
do I have to change anything when creating my project to tell VS that should use 1.1?
I ask you because I moved to VS 2003 only to use some new namespaces of 1.1 framework
LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 10829502
when you install the version 1.1 of the framework, VS 2002 will 'automatically' make use of the newer version.  I know this for a fact, as that is what I did, before my company purchased a UNIVERSAL MSDN subscription, which then allowed us to upgrade to VS 2003, 'for free'.


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