Visual Studio is one hell of a package, but it carries one hell of a price tag. I don't know about anyone else, but I work in an SME company who can ill afford to buy the 2005 batch of products - nor is willing to - until the technology has proved itself, service packs have been released and it has produced a stable platform. This leaves me in the unfortunate position that I will not be able to develop my .NET 2.0 skills until my employer senses the time is right.
As with any big MS release, they give us plenty of warning in way of a complete Product lifecycle from Press Release to Release Candidate, I've had plenty of time to save up. So I dished out the cash and bought Visual Studio 2005 for myself. This also came with SQL Server 2005 Developer - which I thought was a bonus.
But my question is:
The massive price tags attached to these products for a personal-use basis is prohibitive to existing .NET developers who want to hack around before they are able to do it "professionally" and I would guess prohibitive to any new students. I know that the .NET Framework does not requires Visual Studio of any kind to work, but new users and existing well-versed users like myself, will prefer to use an IDE of some form.
So what is your take on this? Should we have a "Personal use" license for Visual Studio 2005, or is Visual Studio Express sufficient? Which one have you gone for?
I've turned comments off due to spamming.