MS .NET Framework - wots it for?

What is the purpose of Microsoft .NET Framework, apart from forcing you to use Windows log-on screen and a host of other irritating & unrequested administrative controls?

I don't want any of the apparent modifications it makes to the XP setup on my various PCs, but "Windows Update" now lists ver 1,2 & 3 stacked up ready to be installed. Even more irritating, MS are now trying to slip it in by the back door: installed a cheapo game (Warhammer 40,000) and found that it auto-installed .NET Framework and a host of other MS utilities, including stuff that trashed my Outlook (I uninstalled the .NET to recover my XP, and found that the game can't work without it. Game binned as well...).

I usually wait a few months before installing any "Windows Update" feature, as MS seem to take that long to produce a version that can be trusted not to screw things up (waited nearly a year before SP2 was modified enough to stop trashing my laptop). It seems that MS is pushing .NET harder and harder - so whats it for, and are we going to get a point where XP will not be supported unless it is installed?
Microsoft .NET is used for programming. It provides pre coded content that you can use. For example, Visual Basic .Net

If you were to program in Java, a libary is the same concept.

Only really helps if you understand Java I suppose?
Thanks. So why is it being forced onto XP users? If its just a programming tool, why does it interfere with user account settings?
4(T) said:
Thanks. So why is it being forced onto XP users? If its just a programming tool, why does it interfere with user account settings?
It means that all of the programmers out there working for all of the different software companies can use a common set of tools for things like opening files, linking to web pages, etc, without each of them having to reinvent the wheel. Oh, and because lots of people use them, they should be better tested and more reliable than any home-grown version.

(So, by uninstalling .NET, you basically ripped out a chunk of the guts of the game.)

This means that they will take less time/resource to roll out their shiny new Warhammer game, and are thus less likely to decide to write their programs for Linux instead (or more likely to produce their Microsoft XP version first).

Microsoft thus gets to make lots of loot selling MS Visual Studio to developers, and increases the chance that they will remain the market leader for people spending cash on operating systems.

Easy, innit? :)
It isnt forced onto you. If you use the "Express" version of MS update, it will be installed by default as you are allowing Microsoft to decide whats best to update on your computer.

If you use the "Custom" version of MS update, you can chose whether to install it or not. I'm not sure about forcing you to use the windows logon screen - that functionality is available in XP Home and Pro via the control panel User Accounts icon and the Administrative Tools/Local Security Policy. Installing .net framework shouldnt enable this functionality.

It wouldnt surprise me if MS were using third parties to install various windows features via their software however as you point out the game required .net, so thats why it was installed. We are unlikely to reach a point where XP wont be supported because you havent installed .net, like a previous poster said, its a programming framework not an integral part of the operating system. We're more likely to reach a point that XP isnt supported in the same way that NT/2K/ME/98 etc are not supported anymore, simply because the're obsolete in Microsofts view.

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