Scott Hanselman

Microsoft ASP.NET MVC 1.0 is now Open Source MS-PL

April 02, 2009 Comment on this post [23] Posted in ASP.NET | ASP.NET MVC
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iStock_000003337699XSmall The source for ASP.NET MVC has long been available up at The source has been "Available" so I usually call this "Source Opened" as opposed to "Open Source."

ASP.NET MVC has been "Free" as in "Gratis" since it started. That means, "Free like Beer." As ScottGu just blogged about moments ago, today, it's also "Libre" as in "Free like Speech." You can do what you want with the source. 

Today, ASP.NET MVC is now Open Source and licensed under MS-PL. That means you can change it, redistribute your changes, even fork it if you want. MS-PL is an OSI-Approved Open Source License and you can read the legalese on their site.

"The Ms-PL contains no platform restrictions and provides broad rights to modify and redistribute the source code."

As a reminder, MEF (Managed Extensibility Framework) is another .NET Framework component that's MS-PL, as is the DLR (Dynamic Language Runtime) and IronRuby. The Ajax Control Toolkit and Silverlight Toolkit is also MS-PL.

These are all baby steps, but more and more folks at The Company are starting to "get it." We won't rest until we've changed the way we do business.

If you like, you can download and install ASP.NET MVC 1.0 from inside of the Web Platform Installer 2.0 directly.

Congrats to ScottGu and PhilHa and the team for making this happen. Now, go bask in the source as the ASP.NET MVC 1.0 download has been updated with a zip of the source. I hope Miguel is dancing today.

If you have any questions about the future, legal stuff, etc, I'll defer them to ScottGu (leave them in his comments).

(This is not an April Fools joke. It's for reals.)

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About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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April 02, 2009 5:59
whoa! Sweet! Thanks to The Gu, Mr. Haack, SoccHa, RobCon and the team.
April 02, 2009 6:06
That is pretty sweet.

That oughta shut up those fuddy duddies that say MS doesn't care about open source. This is a fantastic milestone.

Good work team.
April 02, 2009 6:07
Nice and congrats on getting that out so quickly.
April 02, 2009 6:10
Suh-weet! Whoot! Whoot! Wow these are definitely exciting times we're living in. Web technologies are growing faster than we can create acronyms for them, and then MS drops this beautious bombshell! *applaudes while ASP.NET Team takes their appropriate bow* This is just great news. Great news.
April 02, 2009 6:11
Huge news. Many props to you folks at MS who've pushed through this fundamental change in culture. Sure, there's plenty of work still to do, but all this is really terrific.

April 02, 2009 6:13
April 02, 2009 6:23
This is great news, thanks a lot!!!
April 02, 2009 6:26
Does this also mean the community will be able to submit patches for Microsoft to approve and put incorporate into future versions?
April 02, 2009 6:27
Sweet! Mono support here we come? Legally?
April 02, 2009 6:59
ekampf - Not yet, but you can fork it and patch it and redistribute it. From what I hear (you'll need to ask The Gu) they're still working on things like Patches. I think IronRuby takes Patches, so anything is possible.

Adam - Yes, Mono should be able to do whatever they like, as I understand it.
April 02, 2009 7:42
I'm really happy, it's a great step towards the open source community, I hope the Mono guys to be very happy and that MS keeps this pace, or a little bit quicker :)

April 02, 2009 8:08
This is what I call "Shock and Awe!"
I know ASP.NET MVC just been released, but I can't seem to wait for the next improvements.

Keep up the good work.
April 02, 2009 9:29
I've heard this from ScottGu, it is really a good news!
April 02, 2009 10:00
awesome news! lovely!
April 02, 2009 10:04
Excellent.... A great step towards Opensouce. It makes sense to pay for visual studio and get AjaxcontrolToolkit, ASP.NET MVC etc free which are cool tools which makes development faster and attract corporates to invest more on MS Products... Kudos to Scott Gu and his team!!

April 02, 2009 10:50
This is outstanding. It's encouraging to see MS start to turn the corner on these issues. It's a big ship and will take a while to turn. (remember to add jQuery to your list).

The key thinking that needs to change at Microsoft is not so much that Open Source is good, but that doing the right thing for customers and community is of equal or higher value than doing what's right for Microsoft. That is the only way any software company is viable long-term. Because they got this so backwards for a decade, they have drawn good competition from many different angles.

Thanks to folks like you for fighting the good fight.
April 02, 2009 11:54
Incredible news! Congrats to all of you :)
April 02, 2009 13:50
Good news on the open sourcing, perhaps I can build my RESTful web service extensions into the core MVC more tightly.
April 02, 2009 14:55
Great news!

Would you have a link somewhere that specifies which licenses MS-PL is compatible with, can I redistribute as GPL? Can I include MS-PL code in a BSD project? Etc ...

April 02, 2009 15:54
Scott, while the subject of MS source release is in the air, can you find out what's happening to the framework source and RSCC? After a brief period of promotion by the likes of you and the Gu back at the beginning of 08, it seems to have become moribund.

Pages like are as broken as the promises which were made to fix them (months ago) at

The blog at is apparently abandoned - though that might just be despair at being on its knees the whole time - actually there's a general sense of abandonment about

If things like RSCC and are really just personal side-projects, subject to the same loss-of-attention that most of us experience for things, then fine. But when they're promoted as significant steps for MS (RSCC was hugely puffed in this fashion), it's not very reassuring to your customers when they fall on the floor so soon after.

We all know what long-term neglect by MS looks like - we get to see it (sometimes, eventually, perhaps) every time we press F1.

It's not enough for you guys to be great at cool new stuff like MVC and reference source (and I love it, don't get me wrong), you have to look like you're in it for the long haul - how many releases is JQuery intellisense annotation going to last for, do we all think?

April 02, 2009 18:01
Absolutely great news as it instantly provides more value to all of our ASP.NET MVC applications as it now has the potential to run cross-server-platform.

Now if you can only lift the remaining FUD, patent and litigation cloud over the mono opensource .NET stack, there would be very little reason left not to use .NET for most applications.
April 03, 2009 2:08
Sweet, the source is up on github:

One question, where are the tests!?
April 08, 2009 13:50

Thank you for doing this. I definitely appreciate Microsoft's work here in .NET. It is just so much nicer than everything else out there. Now with MVC, I can put away my Django book and focus on my C#.

Alex Birch

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.