[Mono-list] Just a simple question

Jonathan Pryor jonpryor at vt.edu
Wed Mar 29 06:31:43 EST 2006

On Wed, 2006-03-29 at 11:59 +0200, Norbert Berzen wrote:
> Yesterday, while doing some dumb fitness training, one question came
> into my mind. What if microsoft decides not to support the native
> executable (PE) format any longer? What if they say: "The one and only
> executable file format we support is the CLR/CLI (PE) format".

Imagine Microsoft putting a bullet through its collective brain.  That's
what removing unmanaged support would do.

In short, it would be the end of *every* unmanaged application --
Microsoft Office, SQLServer, PhotoShop, all internal business apps,

It would *kill* Windows overnight, because the market isn't going to
wait for EVERY piece of Win32 software to be re-written (never mind all
those company-internal VB6 apps).

Remember the point of .NET's excellent COM interop and DllImport
functionality?  To permit integration with existing code -- Microsoft
doesn't intend to ever fully rewrite Office in managed code, there would
be little benefit.  The same is true for most other large pieces of

Microsoft would have to be insane to even consider something like this,
as it would remove most backward compatibility, effectively removing the
existing software base.

In short, this won't happen.  Ever.

On the bright side, you'd see Apple and Linux users rejoicing if this
ever occurred, because it would instantly make more commercial software
available on their platforms...

 - Jon

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