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Thread: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

  1. #1
    John Butler Guest

    Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    Ok....just read the article by Don Box, "Is COM dead"
    (http://msdn.microsoft.com/msdnmag/is...om/com1200.asp) and parts of
    my brain are still short-circuiting....

    Within the context of VB , can someone please explain the following to me:

    I understand now, how wonderfully the CLR handles/disguises/simplifies the
    intricacies of COM...but where Dumbo here is missing it is: How do I build a
    DLL or something in Visual Fred and then move it onto a Win2000 server for
    object pooling, use MSMQ etc etc.

    In other words, I am failing to see the (real world) tie in between the
    wonderful (?) new benefits of the CLR and how it treats COM, and how things
    currently work. ie I create a DLL in VB 6, test it etc, then install it on a
    Windows 2000 server and use it. How in the new world of the CLR does this
    work? Does the CLR have to be installed on a Win2000 server and does it then
    somehow manage the COM+/CLR communication or what?

    I apologize if this is a frightfully stupid question...but sometimes...one
    doesn't get it...and right now...I for one, don't! I haven't had the luxury
    of working my way into Beta 1 yet, so this question might be quickly
    answered if I had...

    rgds
    John Butler

    PS This question might be more suitable for the technical discussion
    forum....but I am posing it within the context of: How dead is COM
    really?...which makes it slightly more discussion-oriented...





  2. #2
    Rob Teixeira Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?


    Well John,
    a professor once told me "There are no stupid questions!"
    Seemed like words of wisdom at the time, but I've finally come to believe
    that yes, there are indeed VERY stupid questions!
    Rest assured though, your question is very valid

    The truth is that in a "perfect" .NET world, you would no longer need COM.
    The reality is that a lot of system services provided by windows and 3rd
    parties, as well as components and controls, are still COM-based. In fact,
    I don't see COM really dying anytime soon. But let's go back to our "perfect
    .NET world" for a minute. In this .NET world, you write assemblies. If you
    want to use assemblies from other assemblies, you simply "Import" them the
    same way you reference and import Framework classes. You're probably wondering
    what else you have to do. Well, nothing, that's it.

    How about all that RPC and DCOM crap? Well, .NET has a bunch of System classes
    for "Remoting" (there's a chunk on this in the Beta documentation). This
    ties in with all that Web services stuff because you can also Remote objects
    by using HTTP and/or SOAP. In order to activate an object and/or run some
    of it's code, you could simply call a URL on a server machine and the rest
    is history.

    Remember when I said that some system services are still COM-based? Well,
    that holds true for MSMQ and MTS (COM+).
    .NET has several classes in the Framework that allow you to use MSMQ and
    wrap MSMQ functionality pretty transparently.
    In order to work with COM+, you need to fake windows into thinking your classes
    represent COM classes. The Type Library Exporter tool and/or Services Registration
    tool help you do this.

    If you want to consume COM-based components, .NET provides COM interop wrappers.
    There's a big section on this in the beta docs "COM Interoperability Specification".

    -Rob

    "John Butler" <jrbutler@btclick.com> wrote:
    >Ok....just read the article by Don Box, "Is COM dead"
    >(http://msdn.microsoft.com/msdnmag/is...om/com1200.asp) and parts

    of
    >my brain are still short-circuiting....
    >
    >Within the context of VB , can someone please explain the following to me:
    >
    >I understand now, how wonderfully the CLR handles/disguises/simplifies the
    >intricacies of COM...but where Dumbo here is missing it is: How do I build

    a
    >DLL or something in Visual Fred and then move it onto a Win2000 server for
    >object pooling, use MSMQ etc etc.
    >
    >In other words, I am failing to see the (real world) tie in between the
    >wonderful (?) new benefits of the CLR and how it treats COM, and how things
    >currently work. ie I create a DLL in VB 6, test it etc, then install it

    on a
    >Windows 2000 server and use it. How in the new world of the CLR does this
    >work? Does the CLR have to be installed on a Win2000 server and does it

    then
    >somehow manage the COM+/CLR communication or what?
    >
    >I apologize if this is a frightfully stupid question...but sometimes...one
    >doesn't get it...and right now...I for one, don't! I haven't had the luxury
    >of working my way into Beta 1 yet, so this question might be quickly
    >answered if I had...
    >
    >rgds
    >John Butler
    >
    >PS This question might be more suitable for the technical discussion
    >forum....but I am posing it within the context of: How dead is COM
    >really?...which makes it slightly more discussion-oriented...
    >
    >
    >
    >



  3. #3
    John Butler Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    Thanks Rob
    "Rob Teixeira" <RobTeixeira@@msn.com> wrote in message
    news:3aa5d5fc$1@news.devx.com...
    >
    > In order to work with COM+, you need to fake windows into thinking your

    classes
    > represent COM classes. The Type Library Exporter tool and/or Services

    Registration
    > tool help you do this.
    >
    > If you want to consume COM-based components, .NET provides COM interop

    wrappers.
    > There's a big section on this in the beta docs "COM Interoperability

    Specification".
    >


    I'll have a look at said docs...it seemed to me to be crazy, after all the
    work that MS has put into Windows 2000 Com+ services, to simply toss the
    baby out with the bathwater....They've done so much work to counter CORBA
    etc at the enterprise level and now........?

    Even after your explanation, I'm still drawing a blank on where the
    "enterprise" functionality of COM+ fits into Ander's new
    sonOfDelphiJAva....If you have to "fake" windows into something...seems to
    me that you'd be better off sticking with a tool(s) that is specifically
    geared towards building solid Com components...ie VB6 or C++ ...rather than
    Visual Studio.netand kludging it. In my simple mind, that's like designing
    a good power socket, then bringing out a new plug that doesn't fit without
    three adaptors....

    Oh well....time to RTFM I guess....

    Thanks for the response.
    Rgds
    John Butler

    PS (and yes, I'm aware of all the bad things about COM and registry blues,
    but my analogy _still_ holds....<takes another sip of wine> ..I think, if
    you're solidly grounded in the real world, not simply looking forward to the
    future of programming and nice "fluffy" conceptual thinking about
    CLR's/DF/etc etc. To me, MS finally got COM to the point where it could hold
    it's own in terms of scalability at an enterprise level, we all bust our
    asses learning about vtables and whatnot and now it's all yesterday's
    news....hmmm maybe there's an alt.dinosaur.COM.programmers newsgroup I can
    subscribe to??







  4. #4
    Tom Barnaby Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?


    "John Butler" <nospamjrbutler@btclick.com> wrote:
    >Even after your explanation, I'm still drawing a blank on where the
    >"enterprise" functionality of COM+ fits into Ander's new
    >sonOfDelphiJAva>


    Hi John:

    Click on this to get the opinion of the guy who is in charge of the COM+/MTS
    group:

    http://discuss.develop.com/archives/...OTNET&P=R55490

    Personally, I believe that COM is dead. The COM+ story is different, however.
    The key COM+ services such as messaging and automatic transactions are or
    will be built into .NET. The fringe COM+ stuff like queued components and
    loosely coupled events are gone as far as I can tell.

    Tom Barnaby
    www.intertech-inc.com



  5. #5
    John Butler Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    Tom

    Thanks very much...that was most helpful. I did a deja search before I
    posted this thread, but with google owning deja now...it's all messed up and
    I missed that discussion.

    rgds
    John Butler




  6. #6
    Joe \Nuke Me Xemu\ Foster Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    "Tom Barnaby" <tbarnaby@intertech-inc.com> wrote in message <news:3aa6f28d$1@news.devx.com>...

    > "John Butler" <nospamjrbutler@btclick.com> wrote:
    > >Even after your explanation, I'm still drawing a blank on where the
    > >"enterprise" functionality of COM+ fits into Ander's new
    > >sonOfDelphiJAva>

    >
    > Hi John:
    >
    > Click on this to get the opinion of the guy who is in charge of the COM+/MTS
    > group:
    >
    > http://discuss.develop.com/archives/...OTNET&P=R55490


    Pah. That isn't COM: that's COM.NOT. Where is the DF mentioned in the
    ads? Bait and switch! Bait and switch!

    --
    Joe Foster <mailto:jfoster@ricochet.net> Space Cooties! <http://www.xenu.net/>
    WARNING: I cannot be held responsible for the above They're coming to
    because my cats have apparently learned to type. take me away, ha ha!



  7. #7
    Mike Mitchell Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    On Thu, 8 Mar 2001 00:18:56 -0000, "John Butler"
    <nospamjrbutler@btclick.com> wrote:

    >........................ To me, MS finally got COM to the point where it could hold
    >it's own in terms of scalability at an enterprise level, we all bust our
    >asses learning about vtables and whatnot and now it's all yesterday's
    >news....hmmm maybe there's an alt.dinosaur.COM.programmers newsgroup I can
    >subscribe to??


    Yes, and in ten years' time, Sjoerd, Zane, et al *will* be older and
    Microsoft will completely change again, leaving .NET a relic in the
    dust and for them to feel the pain for a change.

    MM

  8. #8
    Zane Thomas Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    On Fri, 09 Mar 2001 00:03:58 GMT, kylix_is@hotmail.com (Mike Mitchell)
    wrote:

    >Yes, and in ten years' time, Sjoerd, Zane, et al *will* be older and
    >Microsoft will completely change again, leaving .NET a relic in the
    >dust and for them to feel the pain for a change.


    Uh, scuse me Sonny, but I've been porting since VBXes. And glad of it,
    the market has expanded each time as I'm confident it will do with .net.


    ---
    Ice Z - Straight Outta Redmond

  9. #9
    Sjoerd Verweij Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    > Yes, and in ten years' time, Sjoerd, Zane, et al *will* be older and
    > Microsoft will completely change again, leaving .NET a relic in the
    > dust and for them to feel the pain for a change.


    Erm... I distinctly remember Visual Objects. For some, change isn't
    painful -- especially if it's for the better.




  10. #10
    Rob Teixeira Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?


    kylix_is@hotmail.com (Mike Mitchell) wrote:
    >On Thu, 8 Mar 2001 00:18:56 -0000, "John Butler"
    ><nospamjrbutler@btclick.com> wrote:
    >
    >Yes, and in ten years' time, Sjoerd, Zane, et al *will* be older and
    >Microsoft will completely change again, leaving .NET a relic in the
    >dust and for them to feel the pain for a change.
    >
    >MM


    The only difference is that they will be expecting change (as it's naive
    to think that nothing will) and will probably be welcoming it. After all,
    if technology is doubling every 20 years, .NET will look like punch cards
    by then.

    -Rob

  11. #11
    Zane Thomas Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    On 8 Mar 2001 19:09:26 -0800, "Rob Teixeira" <RobTeixeira@@msn.com> wrote:

    >After all,
    >if technology is doubling every 20 years, .NET will look like punch cards
    >by then.


    Hmmm, well or at least like a TRS 80. :-)

    Wow! I mean imagine what we're going to have to play with in another 5 or
    10 years. I can hardly wait.

    I was lucky in the mid 70s to get a job with a minicomputer manufacturer
    and so had some pretty leading-edge equipment to play with. A 300lb 5mb
    hard-disk drive that dimmed the lights when turned on.

    And then shortly there were 75mb Trident drives with a magnet so huge you
    could magnatize screwdrivers with it. Put that together with a dual 8x11
    inch set of cards which used 4 2901s to implement a 10mhz CPU and you had
    one cranking system!

    Let see, ten years ago, where were we? Time flies. 33mhz 486s perhaps
    and maybe a couple hundred megabytes of disk, 512kb of ram? Something like
    that. Oh, and forget the screaming graphic's processor cards.

    My present system: Decent graphics, dual 750mhz processors, 512MB of ram,
    50GB of disk storage. **** yeah! I can't wait for the next 10 years to
    pass. Change is good, give me more!!!!






    ---
    Ice Z - Straight Outta Redmond

  12. #12
    Jason Bock Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    Zane Thomas <zane@mabry.com> wrote in message
    news:3aaa4dc2.345232515@news.devx.com...
    > My present system: Decent graphics, dual 750mhz processors, 512MB of ram,
    > 50GB of disk storage. **** yeah! I can't wait for the next 10 years to
    > pass. Change is good, give me more!!!!


    Kylix and Delphi .

    Regards,

    Jason



  13. #13
    Zane Thomas Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    On Fri, 9 Mar 2001 09:26:53 -0600, "Jason Bock" <jrbock@nospam.execpc.com>
    wrote:

    >Kylix and Delphi .


    Hahah. Throughout the 80s I took a look at each new thing Borland came
    out with. Somehow I was never impressed and stuck with MS tools, a fact
    I've never regreted.


    ---
    Ice Z - Straight Outta Redmond

  14. #14
    Sjoerd Verweij Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    > My present system: Decent graphics, dual 750mhz processors, 512MB of ram,
    > 50GB of disk storage. **** yeah! I can't wait for the next 10 years to
    > pass. Change is good, give me more!!!!


    Let's see... 10GHz CPU, 5GHz FSB, 4Gb MRAM, 2Tb disk?



  15. #15
    Joe \Nuke Me Xemu\ Foster Guest

    Re: Is COM Dead now: Huh?

    "Sjoerd Verweij" <nospam.sjoerd@sjoerd.org> wrote in message <news:3aa91d1a$1@news.devx.com>...

    > > My present system: Decent graphics, dual 750mhz processors, 512MB of ram,
    > > 50GB of disk storage. **** yeah! I can't wait for the next 10 years to
    > > pass. Change is good, give me more!!!!

    >
    > Let's see... 10GHz CPU, 5GHz FSB, 4Gb MRAM, 2Tb disk?


    And only 29 seconds for Office 2010 to start up?

    --
    Joe Foster <mailto:jfoster@ricochet.net> Space Cooties! <http://www.xenu.net/>
    WARNING: I cannot be held responsible for the above They're coming to
    because my cats have apparently learned to type. take me away, ha ha!



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