Free Microsoft developer tools for Aussie university students

Microsoft's DreamSpark program, which offers free copies of its developer software to students, has been extended to Australia. Registered university and TAFE students (there's a verification process) can download free copies of numerous MS developer tools, including the big hitters Visual Studio and Expression Studio. Of course there's a not-so-hidden agenda here — encouraging students to develop skills with MS platforms help ensure a corporate appetite for those tools. Nonetheless, those are good skills to have on your resume. (Those tools aren't small, so download them on campus or near the end of your ISP billing month to avoid chewing up too much of your cap.)


    And for those who aren't uni/TAFE students, but still want their Visual Studio fix, search for "express editions" on your favourite search engine.

    Wait... they count Tafe students? I didn't see the Bremer tafe( step 3 process bit :( so um.. yeah.. does it? lol as I wouldn't mind giving XNA a try

    When I was at TAFE a few years ago, they offered an MSDN pack with Visual Studio, Access, SQL Server, Office, Visio and all sorts of other goodies for about $25 per student with full individual registration keys in our names. Might be worth looking into if you can get this.

    Heads up - actually, Microsoft has long had something better called the MSDNAA (if I recall the acronym aright) which also operates in Australia.

    Under the MSDNAA, for I guess the same reason, students and perhaps staff of subscribing academic institutions can receive practically anything Microsoft you can dream of free and legal - NOT just developer software - as long as you don't use it for any business or commercial purpose...

    As a poor student at one major University studying IT, I got Windows XP Pro, all their .NET developer products, and much more lent to me to copy with keys by the IT Dept.'s Sys. Admin. (even legacy OS and Microsoft's virtualisation software, $Office$ and the academically useful OneNote were available, as I recall).

    Ironically, even though money was paid annually? by the IT folks to subscribe to the MSDNAA, I learnt from someone in the know that the link to the MSDNAA info/request form was deliberately hidden away in an obscure location on the Dept.'s site - and noone advertised the fact the MSDNAA was available to students - because the Dept. was suffering from a dearth of funding, and even looked like it might finally perish.

    This is so not on. I originally got an Hons. in Arts and was dismayed to see how whole swathes of education were gradually dying the death of a thousand cuts because they were not deemed "economically viable" (i.e. money makers like Engineering and Science)...but those areas being bled were the very ones that were historically the basis of the modern Western "University" - the "human" or "liberal arts"!

    It's reprehensible that some students unnecessarily stress and run around trying to find ways to legally access software and hardware effectively needed for their full-time study, because our govt./community does not value and sponsor some sorts of education enough.

    In my case (and I am not alone; e.g. consider Australian govt. student assistance still remains lower than jobsearch assistance and ***30%*** below the ***poverty line***) the sense of ironic injustice was marked since I sometimes could not eat; had no furniture; and could not afford textbooks without me applying my brains and doing a lot of work to find help from a range of agencies like St. Vincent de Paul's (for what you did, thanks).

    Plus I was actually trying to finish my studies in order to be employable in IT, and so cease to be a burden on the community purse.

    To top it all off, I had chosen my University because it had enjoyed a reputation as "the" technical / IT University in our State - at least when I did my first degree in the 90's; Australia was also discussing its critical shortage of skilled workers in areas like IT, and having to "import" workers; and IT is not "unlucrative" like, say, Classical Languages (*cough*)- and yet here was this University underfunding its own IT Dept.!

    I'm so going to have to ask about it Christian.

    I've already started this years ImagineCup entry in express, but I'll grab the full version if it's free!

    If you cannot download from dreamspark now it could be because MS is charging institutions a license fee and if the institution has not paid then no download.

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