The launch of Microsoft's latest and greatest development tool in the US tomorrow, Visual Studio .NET, might also prove a sales boon for software developer Crystal Decisions after a new version of its reporting tool was bundled with Visual Studio .NET.
Microsoft Visual Studio .NET is a rapid application development tool for building the next generation of Windows and Web-based applications. The many developers worldwide that will receive the development tool as part of their subscription to the Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) will also be receiving a special version of Crystal Reports to enable the generation of interactive reports for the enterprise applications they develop.
Crystal Decisions partner manager Rhody Burton said the special version is a sub-set of the latest version of Crystal Reports (v8.5). Although it is a new edition, not an upgrade, it cannot be sold as a standalone product and is only functional as part of the Visual Studio .NET tool.
Burton said she does not expect existing versions of Crystal Reports to be any harder to sell as a result of the deal. The Visual Studio .NET version does not have the standalone design function of version 8.5, nor the export functionality, nor connectivity to any ODBC-compliant database.
Visual Studio .NET will be released tomorrow in the US and will be launched in Melbourne on Tuesday February 26 and in Sydney on Thursday February 28.