Microsoft today announced that it has released a fork of the Windows Live Writer software for creating and posting blogs under an open source MIT license. Microsoft engineers no longer actively develop Windows Live Writer, so Microsoft volunteers elected to make it freely available for anyone to download and even build on.
Windows Live Writer first became available in 2006. It was based on a product called Onfolio Writer, which Microsoft picked up by acquiring Onfolio in 2006. Back then Microsofties imagined that one day people could use Windows Live Writer to write and publish many kinds of written content for the Web, not just blogs, but it really never took off beyond blogs, including Microsoft SharePoint blogs and LiveJournal accounts.
The new Open Live Writer software supports blogging services like WordPress, Blogger, and TypePad.
In a blog post on the news today, Scott Hanselman, principal program manager for Microsoft Azure, ASP.NET, and Web Tools at Microsoft, warned people up front that the code isn’t the freshest thing out there:
Much of the code in Open Live Writer is nearly 10 years old. The coding conventions, styles, and idioms are circa .NET 1.0 and .NET 1.1. You may find the code unusual or unfamiliar, so keep that in mind when commenting and discussing the code. Before we start adding a bunch of async and await and new .NET 4.6isms, we want to focus on stability and regular updates.
That said, the software works perfectly well on Windows. And now there’s an active community where users can go to make it better, or just find out how their favorite old blogging software worked from the inside out.
VentureBeat's mission is to be a digital town square for technical decision-makers to gain knowledge about transformative enterprise technology and transact. Learn more about membership.