Free Pro Developer and Designer tools

Now, for the first time, Microsoft is giving its valuable software developer and design tools directly to students worldwide at no charge*! This site enables students to download professional-level Microsoft developer and design tools to unlock creative potential and set students on the path to academic and career success, by supporting and advancing learning and skills through technical design, technology, math, science and engineering activities (according to themselves).

Who can get this right now?

Microsoft are kicking this off in 11 countries/regions, giving DreamSpark to millions of students in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, China, Germany, France, Finland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Belgium. If you are not residing in one of the countries listed keep checking back, more countries will be added throughout the year.

* In order to get this software from Microsoft at no charge, you will be asked to establish or verify your student status once every 12 months. This process is built into this DreamSpark site itself. Verification of valid student status will enable students from around the globe to download Microsoft developer and design tools at no charge. Note: You must be at least 18 years old or have otherwise reached the age of majority in the place (province, state or country) where you live, or if not, your parent or legal guardian must accept the Microsoft DreamSpark software license terms on your behalf, in order for you to download and use the software.

So what does this mean?

Unless you are a student you wont get anything. On the other side students probably have these products already via P2P or bit torrent. I assume Microsoft are doing this to try and capture students before they turn to the free (and better) open source solutions. What’s your take on this?

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