.Net For shareware

Nick Bradbury blogged recently saying “.NET runtime is suicide for most downloadable shareware apps”. That might be true *today*, but will that be true next month ?


When XP SP2 rolls off the presses, rumour has it that CD’s will be wide spread. Let’s hope that is true, and that on those CD’s will be the .NET runtime. Microsoft has been slow to distribute the runtime to date, and part of that reason may have been because of legal rulings instigated by Sun to stop MS distributing the .NET runtime and/or Java runtime. But once those CD’s are as wide spread as those AOL and MSN cd’s, the runtime distribution won’t be a real issue. I agree it’s a shame it has taken so long, but at last it looks like we are getting there.


That’s the negatives, but what about the positives ?


.NET and click once style of deployment means that customers can trust applications downloaded from the web not to mess with their system. Sure Microsoft made a mistake in making .NET exe’s “exe”, but that was a legacy API thing 😉  Still, by using the Web, .NET  downloads should be distinguishable from other software, and users can safely let an exe run on their machine.

For administrators it means they can lock down machines and still give users freedom to download and run shareware apps.


.NET really is a good step forward for shareware, and a giant leap forward for users. Finally they can safely download and run software, rather than hope the author doesn’t mess with their system or screw up shared dlls etc, etc.

1 Comment so far

  1.   Robert on October 3rd, 2004          

    I use .net for "freeware" and have had no problem with acceptance. I get about 100 downloads a day each for my 3D software


    and my web-spidering image download software


    and have had few complaints. From my "register" log, about 80% of the people who download the software run it!