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Microsoft Offers Free E-Learning Courses

Press Release

Well folks, Microsoft is at it again. They're taking perfectly good online training that lots of people pay good money for and they're giving it away for free!

Now I know a lot of you are saying to yourselves "Don't they always do that?" and in a way you're right. You can always get tons of free webcasts and such. Right now the place to find those is over at the Explore Web Development with ASP.NET 2.0 page. But this isn't just some webcast... this is the good stuff right out of the Microsoft E-Learning catalog. Honest to goodness online training with labs and self tests to be sure you were paying attention.

At the moment there are four courses related to developing with Visual Studio 2005 available for free. They are:

  • Course 2913: Creating Your First Microsoft® ASP.NET 2.0 Web Application

    Summary: This three-hour online course covers the entities that form the foundation of Web applications written with ASP.NET 2.0. This course is a great starting point for anyone who has not worked with Visual Studio 2005 or ASP.NET 2.0 before.
    Audience: Developer
    Available Offline: Yes
    Price: $44.99 NOW FREE, 1-year subscription

  • Course 4336: Upgrading from Microsoft® Visual Basic® 6.0: Introduction to the Microsoft .NET Framework

    Summary: This three-hour online learning course teaches the Visual Basic 6.0 developer about the .NET Framework 2.0 including the Common Language Runtime, the Common Type System, Garbage Collection and COM interoperability. The course also introduces the .NET Framework namespaces and base classes. This training is designed with the Visual Basic 6.0 developer in mind to allow for a simple transition to the .NET Framework.
    Audience: Developer
    Available Offline: Yes
    Price: $44.99 NOW FREE, 1-year subscription

  • Workshop 4249: Performing Asynchronous Tasks by Using Multithreading with Microsoft® Visual Studio® 2005

    Summary: This 2-hour workshop describes how to create Windows® applications that can run tasks in the background. It also describes how to use asynchronous methods and other features of components that support the Asynchronous Pattern for Components. In the lab, you will create an application that loads a bitmap asynchronously and performs arithmetic calculations on a background thread.
    Audience: Developer
    Available Offline: Yes
    Price:$39.99 NOW FREE, 1-year subscription

  • Workshop 4260: Building and Consuming a Simple XML Web Service with Microsoft® Visual Studio® 2005

    Summary: This 2-hour workshop describes the functions, components and usage of Web Services and reviews some of the optional technologies. In the lab, you will create a Web service and client, modify Web method attributes and create a proxy class manually, deploy a Web service, debug and handle exceptions in a Web service.
    Audience: Developer
    Available Offline: Yes
    Price: $39.99 NOW FREE, 1-year subscription

They've also got free courses in some other categories (like SQL Server 2005 and Exchange 2007) so be sure to check out the "Discounts and Special E-Learning Offers" section on the Microsoft E-Learning Home Page if you're interested in any of those.

Even if you don't have time to actually complete the courses right now, if you've got any interest in them at all you should sign up for them while they're free because Microsoft gives you access to them for a whole year.

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