.NET Valley (PA) - Microsoft announced at the Microsoft MVP Engagement yesterday in Malvern, PA that they will be increasing their support for user groups. As part of this initiative, .NET Valley will be handing out a free copy of Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Beta 2. This year, Microsoft will release two of the most anticipated releases in the company’s history; Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 and Microsoft SQL Server 2005. The DVD includes Microsoft Visual Studio 2005, Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Developer Edition Community Technology Preview, and the newest edition to the Visual Studio 2005 family, Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Team System.

In addition to receiving Visual Studio 2005, everyone in attendance will receive other swag including a copy of the latest ASP.NET Pro magazine. Also, we will be raffling off three copies of Microsoft IT Professional software. The winner will have their choice of receiving Microsoft Project, Microsoft Virtual PC, or Microsoft Digital Image Pro.

In continuing these efforts, Microsoft will sponsor the .NET Valley events in June and July at Luzerne County Community College in Nanticoke, PA. More information about these events will be release at a later date and time.

SIGN-UP As a reminder, this event will be held at Keystone College in LaPlume, PA on May 25th, 2005 at 6:30pm. Click here for directions to the event.

For Consumers and Students: This event will feature two topics that will be useful for consumers of technology in the area. The second part of the main presentation will cover Visual Web Developer 2005 (VWD 2005). VWD 2005 is the future of FrontPage. With VWD 2005, home users, students, and hobbyists can easily create powerful websites or web applications to show off their family photos or small business. VWD 2005 comes with three starter kits to help you get started including a Personal Web Site, a Club Web Site, and a Time Tracker Web Site. After the main presentation, there will be an overview of a new Windows/Office support website called WindowsAdvice.com.

For Businesses: The main presentation will demonstrate how local small and medium sized businesses will be able to produce enterprise solutions in a short amount of time. Many of the new features to Visual Studio 2005 enhance rapid application development (RAD).

For IT Professionals: Though this event will not include a Windows/Office presentation, IT professionals will still benefit by attending. In many local businesses, IT professionals find themselves “wearing multiple hats.” Visual Web Developer 2005 will allow IT professionals to develop small web applications such as Internet or Intranet sites without learning to code ASP.NET pages in Visual Basic.NET or C# (c-sharp). In additional, IT professionals will get an overview of a new Windows/Office support website called WindowsAdvice.com.

For Developers:
Developers will have the most to gain at this session. You will see many of the new features, tips and tricks, and shortcuts in using Visual Studio 2005. Later in the presentation, we will shift course and begin to talk about web development with ASP.NET 2.0. Again, many of the new features, controls, tips and tricks, and shortcuts will be demonstrated.