Novell has announced the release of Mono version 1.2, a new version of the Mono project to create an implementation of the Microsoft .Net Framework for open source.
Mono 1.2 enhances the open-source effort and is a major step toward compatibility with the .Net Framework 2.0, Novell officials said. Novell announced the new version on Nov. 9 at the Microsoft TechEd Developers conference in Barcelona, Spain.
The new version of Mono adds support for the Microsoft Windows Forms API to more easily port .Net client-side applications to Linux. Other enhancements in the new release include virtual machine upgrades and enhanced Java support, as well as performance, memory consumption and stability improvements.
Moreover, Novell said the support for the Windows Forms API makes it easier to port .Net client-side applications to Linux. And Novells SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 operating system features several new Mono-based desktop Linux applications such as the Banshee music player, F-spot photo management tool and the Beagle desktop search tool, the company said.
"With this release, weve solved an important issue by making it easier to translate the Microsoft user interfaces to Linux, an important contribution in increasing the number of client-side Linux applications," said Miguel de Icaza, vice president of developer platforms at Novell and maintainer of the Mono project, in a statement. "Now feature complete, Mono has matured to the point that we believe the migration from ASP.Net and Windows Forms to Linux is easier than ever before and gives developers access to all the added benefits of Linux."
Meanwhile, Mainsoft, of San Jose, Calif., continues to work with Novell to contribute to the open-source framework to offer .Net/J2EE (Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition) interoperability solutions to IT organizations that want to run .Net Web and server applications on enterprise-class J2EE servers. Recently, Mainsoft released its Grasshopper 2.0 Technology Preview, which includes support for Microsofts Visual Studio 2005 integrated development environment and the .Net Framework 2.0.
According to Novell, the Mono Project is an open-source initiative sponsored by Novell to develop a Unix version of the Microsoft .Net development framework. Its objective is to enable Unix developers to build and deploy cross-platform .Net applications. The 1.2 release of Mono is compliant with and provides full support for .Net 1.1 and partial support for .Net 2.0.
In addition to Window Forms API support, Mono version 1.2 includes numerous feature upgrades including full support for C# 2.0, generics and significant updates to the .Net 2.0 API. The Mono framework supports a variety of platforms, including Linux, Mac OS X, Solaris, BSD and Windows, and a variety of hardware options, such as x86, AMD 64, IA- 64 (Itanium 2), EMT 64, PowerPC, ARM, s390 and S390x, SPARC and SPARC v9, and numerous languages.
Developers can download the Mono framework at www.mono-project.com/downloads.
The recent interoperability agreement between Microsoft and Novell will not impact Mono development from a code-base perspective. In a recent blog post, Novells de Icaza said Mono would not be integrating any code that uses Microsoft patents.
"Although it is possible, we will not integrate such code, as Mono is a community project," de Icaza said. "And we will also continue to keep the Microsoft and Mono stacks separated, as there is no need to add dependencies between them ...."