Many of my current ISVs use C# and VB.NET as their main development languages but there remains a huge base of Visual C++ code deployed as part of ISV solutions (does this sound familiar?) and in turn there is plenty of Visual C++ development still happening. Microsoft is itself a great example of this - products such as Office and Windows were built as "native code" using Visual C++ long before the creation of .NET. ISVs have been asking me "when will Microsoft give Visual C++ some real loving?". The good news is the Visual C++ team have been thinking around this topic since the Summer of 2006 and shared some of their current thinking on Channel 9. Well worth a watch if your company has a large C++ codebase. Ultimately it boils down to:

  1. Increase our level of investment in native libraries e.g. MFC support for latest versions of Windows.
  2. Provide interop technologies that allow easy mixing of native and managed code e.g. marshalling data types between managed and native and STL for managed types
  3. Modernize the Visual C++ development environment e.g. working with very large native code bases

I know the team are interested in speaking with UK ISVs that have a significant investment in Visual C++. Please contact me if you would like to explore this possibility further.

UPDATED: Great link to more details http://blogs.msdn.com/vcblog/archive/2007/04/10/visual-c-orcas-feature-specifications-online.aspx (don't know why I didn't check there at the time!)