The Microsoft Developer Network has delayed shipment of a CD-ROM containing software toolkits and documentation, angering some developers who were expecting the tools earlier. The MSDN Library CD-ROM includes documentation on the company's Visual Studio tool bundle and software updates for its BackOffice suite of servers.
The Library CD-ROM is delivered quarterly to more than 130,00 paying subscribers. Subscribers have come to expect this quarter's disc in mid-April, but Microsoft delayed shipment for a couple of weeks to work on a performance glitch with its InfoViewer portion.
According to Eric Rothenberg, MSDN business manager, the disc should reach most subscribers late this month or early next. "Sometimes we have to decide to ship a bit later and make [the CD] better for our customers," Rothenberg said.
One software developer said he was frustrated by the delay, adding that he hasn't received a software toolkit for creating "push" technology components for the Internet Explorer 4.0 Active Desktop, either. Rothenberg said developers should have received the Explorer 4.0 disc earlier this month.
"Microsoft's programmers are well on their way to creating code for their own technology," said Matthew Pease, chief executive of Full Screen in Atlanta. "It means that they have a step up on the technology."
Another developer posted a message in a public newsgroup complaining that he was promised an MSDN CD within 40 days after paying his subscription fee and that he still hasn't received one.
"Maybe [Microsoft] can really justify a delay," the developer wrote. "Maybe it is reasonable. What is not reasonable is to pay in advance for a subscription and then wait 120 days for something to be delivered when I was told by MSDN people I would wait for 40 days only."
"After all, in the software business, time is money--and why would I want a late shipment?" he wrote.