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I have several open-source projects, but I no longer have a license for Visual Studio.

I heard that Resharper has some kind of deal for open-source project contributors. Is there something similar for Visual Studio?


ps: The main project I'm concerned about is DotNetZip. I use an open-source text editor now to modify the code and project files; and the project is hosted at CodePlex, which I can get to via the "free" Visual Studio TFS command-line tools.

My main problem is that I can no longer design or run the tests I've put into the code. I know there is Nunit and other alternative testing frameworks, but the code is already instrumented for MSTest (I guess that's what it is) and I'd like to keep the testing stable if possible.


I know about DreamSpark but I am not a student. Just a developer of an open-source project.


I guess a better question might be, what's the lowest-cost option for me, an individual open-source developer, to license Visual Studio so that I can run tests on my project?

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closed as off-topic by Jim G., MichaelT, GlenH7, psr, Robert Harvey Jul 7 '14 at 20:29

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Sadly, the cheapest option to get full blown VS is to get nominated by something to become a MVP, get a MVP, and with that comes a MSDN. –  Travis Jun 9 '11 at 19:47
that's the most expensive free software I have ever acquired :-). BizSpark rocks and more folks should know about it. –  Kate Gregory Jun 9 '11 at 20:16
You can use the Visual Studio Community Edition, which is essentially a free Visual Studio Professional with a couple of licensing restrictions. –  CodesInChaos Feb 4 at 7:44

3 Answers 3

I don't know about deals for open-source-contributors FROM Microsoft, but I know there is VS express for free and the free license for VS-PRO using sparks dreams website for college students as well. If you are using the sparkdream option, make sure you read the legal conditions for using VS-pro for free.

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Yes, see my answer to a similar question at Can a developer get volume discount for Microsoft products?

To summarize, if you're a student, or work for a startup, you can get Visual Studio free. Everyone can use Express, though testing might not be included.

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There is also (or were, I don't know if they have been discontinued) BizSpark (requires you to have a startup, may not be suitable) and WebsiteSpark (Requires you to be an independent web developer consultant, I think) programs besides the Dreamspark for students.

Other than that I'm not aware of any discounts except the Express versions.

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