Microsoft's Silverlight 3 beta released

As we mentioned earlier, today will kick off the annual Microsoft MIX conference in Las Vegas, NV. MIX is for designers and developers who build innovative web sites. Attendees are coders, strategists, information architects, visual designers, UX professionals and digital marketers. They represent top web sites, web start-ups, interactive agencies and other organizations that do business on the Web.

In a few hours the keynote will start with ScottGuthrie, corporate vice president of Microsoft's .NET Developer Division, and Bill Buxton, Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research. As highly expected, we are going to hear about the companies' upcoming release of Silverlight 3 beta. Ars Technica has already spotted some Silverlight 3 beta bits on the Microsoft Download Center which is now available for download.

  • Microsoft .NET RIA Services March '09 Preview
    (4.1 MB): Microsoft .NET RIA Services simplifies the traditional n-tier application pattern by bringing together the ASP.NET and Silverlight platforms. RIA Services provides a pattern to write application logic that runs on the mid-tier and controls access to data for queries, changes and custom operations. It also provides end-to-end support for common tasks such as data validation, authentication and roles by integrating with Silverlight components on the client and ASP.NET on the mid-tier.
  • Microsoft Silverlight 3 SDK Beta 1
    (9.6 MB): The Microsoft® Silverlight™ 3 SDK contains online documentation, online samples, libraries and tools for developing Silverlight 3 applications. Usage of the SDK is subject to the SDK License (included in the package).
  • Microsoft Silverlight 3 Tools Beta 1 for Visual Studio 2008 SP1
    (31.3 MB): This package is an add-on for Visual Studio 2008 SP1 to provide tooling for Microsoft Silverlight 3. It can be installed on top of either Visual Studio 2008 SP1 or Visual Web Developer 2008 Express with SP1, and it provides a Silverlight project system for developing Silverlight applications using C# or Visual Basic.
  • The Microsoft Silverlight 3 beta runtime
    (6.23MB) v3.0.40307.0

Silverlight 3 is going to be the highlight of this year's conference, and we're excited to see what Microsoft has in store for us. Stay tuned, the keynote is scheduled to begin at 9:00 A.M. PDT, a little over two hours away.

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55 Comments

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the demos and stuff from MIX09 about silverlight 3 today were really cool. incredible to see some of the stuff theyre doing. the out of browser idea looks nice too. looking forward to next year NBC streaming the olympics live in 720p HD using SL3.

also, anyone going to try out playboyarchive.com when it launches tonight?

I absolutely love Silverlight 3...especially the out of browser, caching, hardware acceleration support etc. The KEXP demo was very cool. Maybe I'm wrong but I see Silverlight overtaking WPF.

why bother with flash or silverlight when you can develop with something that every (modern) browser supports without the need of plugins ... javascript+html+css.

xfodder said,
why bother with flash or silverlight when you can develop with something that every (modern) browser supports without the need of plugins ... javascript+html+css.

Let me know when you've done a game in javascript, html and css.

xfodder said,
why bother with flash or silverlight when you can develop with something that every (modern) browser supports without the need of plugins ... javascript+html+css.


Because not everybody is a masochist.

Because these rubbish and horribly dated open standerds are plagued by variation between browsers , and are for all essental purpaces dead / not under asctive development .

good riddence to a failed concept

ricknl: I guess i might have been to some sub pages of microsoft.com, but i don't recall being asked to install Silverlight and I've never been to netflix (don't rent movies and I'm in Canada)

Rolith: not into sports so never been to these sites

jren207: isn't that a UK thing?

^
adobe didnt build x64 verison of flash yet

browser support ?? well SL support IE Firefox safari etc....

platform independent ? it is to some points SL for windows mono-lite for *nix, you cant play SL content on mobiles yet thro AFAIK .

Silverlight is better compared to flash but still needs several features like

*Platform independent
*64 bit version
*Browser support

I also feel bad that Microsoft has entered the game a bit late... Flash is so popular and dominant everywhere on web today that its way too tough to replace it with silverlight. May be a silverlight version for iPhone ? :P

rakeshishere said,
Silverlight is better compared to flash but still needs several features like

*Platform independent
*64 bit version
*Browser support

I also feel bad that Microsoft has entered the game a bit late... Flash is so popular and dominant everywhere on web today that its way too tough to replace it with silverlight. May be a silverlight version for iPhone ? :P


There is a 64 bit version, and works flawlessly on Windows Vista and Windows 7.

It already runs on Windows and Mac in IE and FireFox, and Moonlight 1 (open-source implementation of Silverlight for Linux) was released recently with Moonlight 2 soon to follow.

You should find an article that isn't 2 years old and isn't based on info that is 4 years old (aka 6 year old data). Pretty much every point he brings up is no longer valid.

Flash can now use C classes
Flash can now be developed in the exact same MS dev tools (flash visual studio plugins)
Flash shapes can be defined purely in text
Flash compilers can directly embed fonts from the font files
Flash animations can be defined programatically
Flash can play industry standard H.264 video

Well, this strategy of MS worked years for them when they enter a market where there is a dominant player. Do you remember Netscape with more 90% of market share?

skynetXrules said,
imagine SL become part of windows .... it will assure the crappy flash destruction

no, it won't. Flash is available on almost every OS. Silverlight isn't. Why would I as an company want to make something in Silverlight, if it will work only on Windows (and osx)? Even if it's easier to make something in Silverlight, end users don't care about that.

...the same reason people write plugins for active X even though it'll only be supported by IE? The same reason people build stuff for direct X 10 even though it'll only run with a graphics card?

Because they offer easier, better, more powerful environments to develop in and only limit their market microscopically.

The2 said,
no, it won't. Flash is available on almost every OS. Silverlight isn't. Why would I as an company want to make something in Silverlight, if it will work only on Windows (and osx)? Even if it's easier to make something in Silverlight, end users don't care about that.

There is also linux support through Moonlight. And whoever said it was just IE is also incorrect. There is a Firefox version as well if i remember correctly.

Rolith said,
...the same reason people write plugins for active X even though it'll only be supported by IE? The same reason people build stuff for direct X 10 even though it'll only run with a graphics card?

Because they offer easier, better, more powerful environments to develop in and only limit their market microscopically.

True! But we are not talking about games, or specific purpose ActiveX, we are talking about something for wide audience.

How is Flash crappy, while the technology that's been trying to imitate Flash while never reaching feature parity not crappy?

skynetXrules said,
imagine SL become part of windows .... it will assure the crappy flash destruction

i can imagine SL as part of windows and another antitrust cases with US gov. and EU commision as main casts

geoken said,
How is Flash crappy, while the technology that's been trying to imitate Flash while never reaching feature parity not crappy?


You are so right, that cool feature where Flash hangs your browser, Silverlight still doens't have that. Or an install that is so crappy Adobe had to release a removal tool. Or security issues every release. Yea, Silverlight is missing some cool features.

geoken said,
How is Flash crappy, while the technology that's been trying to imitate Flash while never reaching feature parity not crappy?


Flash is one of the most poorly written pieces of code you can find. Its security and crash/hang issues are endless, so much that browsers like Chrome and IE 8 are taking huge steps to insulate themselves from Flash as much as possible.

Silverlight is the exact opposite. Not only that, but it offers MORE features, and competes with Adobe AIR - while being a MUCH smaller download.

geoken said,
How is Flash crappy, while the technology that's been trying to imitate Flash while never reaching feature parity not crappy?

In addition to the above rebuttals, SilverLight is not attempting to imitate Flash.

The2 said,
no, it won't. Flash is available on almost every OS. Silverlight isn't. Why would I as an company want to make something in Silverlight, if it will work only on Windows (and osx)? Even if it's easier to make something in Silverlight, end users don't care about that.


Actually SL is available on every OS. (not sure about SL 3)

The2 said,
no, it won't. Flash is available on almost every OS. Silverlight isn't. Why would I as an company want to make something in Silverlight, if it will work only on Windows (and osx)? Even if it's easier to make something in Silverlight, end users don't care about that.


lol, yes it does work on almost every os. it is a multiplatform setup just like Flash.

bob_c_b said,
You are so right, that cool feature where Flash hangs your browser, Silverlight still doens't have that. Or an install that is so crappy Adobe had to release a removal tool. Or security issues every release. Yea, Silverlight is missing some cool features.

It's funny you bring up the removal tool. It only exists because the IE6 > IE7 upgrade caused IE to forget what version of the flash plugin it had installed. Javascript based embedding scripts that tried to query the player version would fail because IE would report nothing for the version. The removal tool was created so IE could be returned back to it's default state before the flash plugin was re-installed from scratch.

I don't understand how you guys are comparing flash's stability and security to silverlight's. 8 out of 10 sites a regular user will visit have flash on them. Conversely, most people don't even have silverlight installed.

As for security, their install base is larger than IE's install base and they have less exploits than IE.

geoken said,
It's funny you bring up the removal tool. It only exists because the IE6 > IE7 upgrade caused IE to forget what version of the flash plugin it had installed. Javascript based embedding scripts that tried to query the player version would fail because IE would report nothing for the version. The removal tool was created so IE could be returned back to it's default state before the flash plugin was re-installed from scratch.

It still stands that flash is an awful piece of software - whether its on Windows, MacOS X or Linux. I can't think of a single redeeming feature; infact, I have used Moonlight on Linux and have not experienced any of the problems I saw when using Flash.

I'm all for, quite frankly, giving Flash a damn good thrashing in the marketplace, then Adobe might give a damn about the quality of their applications and supporting them - rather than the current situation which makes Apple operating system support policy appear as awesome.

Macalicious said,
It still stands that flash is an awful piece of software - whether its on Windows, MacOS X or Linux. I can't think of a single redeeming feature; infact, I have used Moonlight on Linux and have not experienced any of the problems I saw when using Flash.

Did you actually go to the silverlight showcase with moonlight? All I got was the 'you need silverlight' message. (8.10 + Firefox)

geoken said,
Did you actually go to the silverlight showcase with moonlight? All I got was the 'you need silverlight' message. (8.10 + Firefox)

Nope, I went to the fox trailer site; what is the minimum version required on the show case; IIRC you need at least version 2.0 where as moonlight is over version 1.0 compatible. Apparently 2.0 will be coming out soon.