Mono Project Announces Mono 2.0 for Cross-Platform Microsoft .NET Development

Developers can now run .NET applications on Linux, Solaris, Unix & Mac platforms

6 October 2008

The Mono® project, an open source initiative sponsored by Novell, today announced the availability of Mono 2.0, an open source, cross-platform .NET development framework. Mono 2.0 provides all the necessary software to develop and run .NET client and server applications on Linux*, as well as other operating systems. The new Mono 2.0 release is now compatible with the desktop and server components of version 2.0 of the Microsoft* .NET framework and features the Mono Migration Analyzer (MoMA), an analytical tool for .NET-to-Linux migrations.

According to an IDC study (1), nearly 50 percent of IT decision makers, developers and architects surveyed, reported that they use Microsoft .NET as the application technology platform on which their mission-critical applications (excluding email) run. With Mono 2.0, developers can leverage their existing investment and skill sets to build .NET 2.0 applications for deployment on a variety of platforms, including Linux, Solaris*, Unix*, and Mac OS X*.

"Mono 2.0 gives .NET developers the freedom to run their applications on a wide variety of operating systems, including Linux, Mac OS, and Unix," said Miguel de Icaza, vice president of Development Platforms at Novell and maintainer of the Mono project. "Mono 2.0 benefits a wider range of developers, ISVs and end-users by allowing them to write their applications once and run them on any OS platform, dramatically increasing portability and expanding their market reach."

More than 2,000 .NET applications are Mono 2.0 compatible with no code changesMono 2.0 now includes MoMA, the Mono Migration Analyzer. MoMA, which runs natively on .NET or on the Mono framework, helps developers quantify the number of changes required to run their .NET application in a Linux environment. In an analysis of 4,600 .NET applications using MoMA, 45 percent of the applications required no code changes to work with Mono. An additional 24 percent of the applications were shown to require fewer than six code changes to run on Mono.

Mono project enables cross-platform development
One of the most recent successful uses of the Mono framework is the rapid development of MoonlightTM, an open-source, Mono-based plug-in version of Microsoft Silverlight, which is used to create and host next-generation, rich interactive applications. Linden Lab uses Mono in the development of their Second Life project to improve the stability and speed of scripts – particularly calculation-intensive ones.

"Deploying Mono as the primary scripting engine on the Second Life Grid has had enormously positive effects for our Residents," said Jim Purbrick, technical director, Core Platform, Linden Lab. "In fact, some of the internal benchmarking we’ve done has shown that scripts running on Mono run up to 220 times faster. The speed and reliability that Mono provides opens up new possibilities for content creators and improves the experience of even causal users."

Unity Technologies, a leading 3-D game development tool provider, uses Mono for its game development system.

"We chose Mono because of its performance and cross-language capability," said Joachim Ante, CTO and co-founder at Unity Technologies. "Mono provides Unity's diverse developer community the ability to work in such languages as JavaScript, C# and Boo, resulting in a very short learning curve and immediate familiarity with scripting in Unity. The latest version of Mono represents significant improvements in stability and performance and makes it even easier for us to develop feature-rich cross-platform applications that run on the Web, Windows, OS X, Nintendo* Wii* and soon the iPhone*."

Mono 2.0 streamlines development of .NET-based applications
New features available in Mono 2.0 include:

  • Easy installation – A one-click install feature for SUSE® Linux Enterprise and openSUSE®, as well as easy-to-use installers for many of the other supported platforms, including Windows and Mac OS X.
  • Comprehensive platform, hardware and API support – The Mono framework supports a variety of platforms, including Linux, Mac OS X, Solaris, BSD and Windows; a variety of hardware options, such as x86, AMD 64, IA-64 (Itanium 2), EMT 64, PowerPC, ARM, S390 and S390x, SPARC and SPARC 9; all Microsoft .NET 2.0 APIs, including ASP.NET, ADO.NET and Windows.Forms; and C# 3.0 compiler with Language Integrated Query (LINQ) support.
  • Performance upgrades – Improves scaling and performance for ASP.NET, ADO.NET and Mono runtime.
  • Useful downloads – A virtual machine image that comes with a ready-to-use development environment, as well as many open source Web and desktop .NET applications, including the ASP.NET Starter Kits and other demos. An updated version of the MoMA tool, with improved reporting, is also available.

ISV support for Mono 2.0
"With the inclusion of Microsoft .NET 2.0 desktop components in the Mono 2.0 release, we will now be able to deliver the same graphical administration experience across over 125 platforms," said Krishna Ganugapati, vice president of Engineering at Likewise Software. "Giving customers a common way to view and manage all of their systems in a heterogeneous enterprise environment helps conserve valuable people resources, improves security and makes auditors much happier which translates to goodness for everyone."

Steve G. Bjorg, chief technology officer at MindTouch, said, "MindTouch built their open source enterprise collaboration and integration platform, Deki, on the Mono framework. MindTouch Deki enables customers to 'webify' legacy applications, bridge multiple applications with a common interface and provide a more usable interface to systems and databases. Since the core of MindTouch Deki is implemented in C# and deployed to Linux using Mono, we are excited to see Mono 2.0 adding C# 3.0 compiler support, including support for Language Integrated Query (LINQ)."


Mono 2.0 is available now and can be downloaded at For more information about the Mono project, visit

About the Mono Project

The Mono Project is an open source initiative sponsored by Novell to develop a UNIX* version of the Microsoft .NET development framework. Hosted at, the Mono project provides all the necessary software to develop and run .NET client and server applications on Linux, Solaris, Mac OS X, Windows and Unix. Mono has an active and enthusiastic contributing community and is positioned to become the leading choice for development of Linux applications.

About Novell

Novell, Inc. (Nasdaq: NOVL) delivers the best engineered, most interoperable Linux platform and a portfolio of integrated IT management software that helps customers around the world reduce cost, complexity and risk. With our infrastructure software and ecosystem of partnerships, Novell harmoniously integrates mixed IT environments, allowing people and technology to work as one. For more information, visit

(1) Source: IDC Survey Sponsored by Microsoft, 2007 Mission Critical North American Application Platform Study, August 2007

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