Novell Delivers First Commercial Solution to Build .NET Applications for Linux with Microsoft Visual Studio

November 10, 2009

Mono Tools for Visual Studio add-in lowers development costs and reduces time-to-market for non-Windows .NET applications


Novell today announced the availability of the first commercial solution to facilitate the development of .NET applications for Linux*, UNIX* and Mac* OS X within Microsoft* Visual Studio*. A revolutionary new add-in module for Microsoft's Visual Studio integrated development environment (IDE), Mono® Tools for Visual Studio allows Microsoft .NET developers to utilize their familiar Visual Studio environment to design, code and maintain multi-platform applications. By significantly reducing the time and costs of multi-platform development, Mono Tools enables corporate developers, independent software vendors (ISVs) and development services providers to quickly and easily expand their market opportunities and deployment options.

"Microsoft Visual Studio is an integrated environment that helps simplify the entire development process from design to deployment," said Cyrill Glockner, director of Business Development, Platform and Tools, Microsoft Corp. "With the Microsoft Visual Studio Industry Partner program (VSIP), we support the development of tools that seamlessly integrate with Microsoft Visual Studio and help our customers achieve success. Mono Tools for Visual Studio enriches the Visual Studio ecosystem, making it possible for the over six million engineers targeting .NET to gain additional value from their Microsoft tools and skills."

Mono Tools for Visual Studio is a commercial solution that enables C# and .NET developers trained in Microsoft Visual Studio to stay within their preferred IDE, and use their existing skills and extensive .NET ecosystem of code, libraries and tools to develop or port applications to Linux, UNIX or Mac OS X. Prior to Mono Tools, .NET application porting required developers to invest heavily in learning new programming tools and rewriting/re-architecting applications. With Mono Tools, developers trained in the popular Visual Studio IDE can utilize their existing skills and expertise to build multi-platform applications and identify related issues, isolating and fixing them directly within Visual Studio.

"While Linux presents software vendors with a host of new opportunities, developers familiar with .NET tools can find Linux application development tools challengingly different and unsuitable for their needs," said Al Hilwa, program director, Application Development Software at IDC. "Products like Mono Tools that enable .NET developers to better leverage the Linux platform increase their market opportunities and ultimately strengthen the reach of the .NET environment itself."

Pablo Santos, CEO at Codice Software, said, "Our customers want options for Linux, as well as UNIX, Mac OS X and Windows, so multi-platform support is a critical feature for us to offer in our product. Plastic SCM, our flagship software configuration management product, is largely implemented in C# because we find it to be the most productive language. By using Mono Tools for Visual Studio, we can now develop and debug on Linux quickly and easily using our preferred programming language and development environment."

Unique multi-platform development from within Visual Studio
Mono Tools is an add-in module to Microsoft Visual Studio. It is built by many of the engineers who develop and support Mono, an open source project sponsored by Novell. Through a pull-down menu and other integration points in Visual Studio, Mono Tools enables developers to leverage the multi-platform coding, testing and debugging functionality of the Mono platform, all while staying within Visual Studio.

Key features of Mono Tools for Visual Studio include:

  • Development and porting of .NET applications to Linux, UNIX and Mac OS X with analysis, testing, debugging and deployment all from within Visual Studio. Using Mono Tools for Visual Studio, ISVs, corporate developers and development services providers can dramatically cut the costs of multi-platform application development and save time in porting existing .NET applications to non-Windows platforms.
  • Creation of turnkey virtual appliances and software appliances for .NET applications using integrated appliance building functionality. Mono Tools for Visual Studio delivers out-of-the-box integration with SUSE® Studio Online, an innovative, easy-to-use hosted tool that enables users to rapidly build and test appliances based on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server or openSUSE®. ISVs and development services providers can immediately fulfill demand for appliance versions of their existing applications, thus increasing revenue opportunities while simplifying application support and accelerating sales cycles.
  • Integrated porting analysis tools that provide .NET developers a road-map to Linux, Mac OS X and UNIX. Many .NET developers today lack an approach or even an idea of where to begin an application port to non-Windows platforms, a challenge quickly solved with Mono Tools.
  • Ability to run and debug applications in Mono within Visual Studio to isolate incompatibilities between Mono and .NET and between Linux and Windows* - issues which may affect cross-platform application development.
  • Automated packaging for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and openSUSE to prepare applications for immediate deployment on Linux.

"With Mono Tools for Visual Studio, we are bridging the gap between Visual Studio, one of the world's leading development platforms, and Linux, one of the world's leading deployment platforms," said Miguel de Icaza, Mono project founder and vice president of Developer Platforms at Novell. "Customers have been asking us for an easier, more simple and streamlined process to port their .NET applications to Linux, UNIX and Mac. By integrating our tools right into Visual Studio, we are enabling developers familiar with Windows and .NET to quickly bring their applications to the Linux market, and ISVs to offer their software as ready-to-run appliances."

Mono Tools Pricing and Availability
Mono Tools for Visual Studio is available now. Three product editions are available: Professional Edition (individual) for $99, Enterprise Edition (one developer in an organization) for $249, and Ultimate Edition for $2,499 which provides a limited commercial license to redistribute Mono on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X and includes five enterprise developer licenses. All product versions include a one-year subscription for product updates.

To learn more about Mono Tools for Visual Studio and download a free 30-day trial visit To learn more about the Mono Project visit

About Novell

Novell, Inc. (Nasdaq: NOVL) delivers the best engineered, most interoperable Linux platform and a portfolio of integrated IT management software that helps customers around the world reduce cost, complexity and risk. With our infrastructure software and ecosystem of partnerships, Novell harmoniously integrates mixed IT environments, allowing people and technology to work as one. For more information, visit

Novell , Mono, openSUSE and SUSE are registered trademarks of Novell, Inc. in the United States and other countries. *All third-party trademarks are the property of their respective owners.