Microsoft has rolled out a pilot program in which certain hotfixes for the Visual Studio 2005 product line will be made available via download. The fixes and associated Knowledge Base articles can be founds here.
So far there are nine fixes posted above on the above site. Four address Visual Basic 2005 -- two deal with performance issues, one fixes corrupted Web Site Project deployment files and one remedies Visual Basic compiler error messages.
"The goal of this pilot is to provide you with direct access to the most requested hotfixes that are produced for our developer tools," Microsoft wrote on the hotfix page. The company also said the fixes had not gone through complete testing and should only be installed if the specific issue they address is the issue that a developer is experiencing.
One benefit of the pilot program is that developers will not have to call Microsoft to receive hotfixes. This could be a cumbersome process, especially for developers outside the United States, Frans Bouma, a Dutch developer, writes here in his blog.
"Let's hope this turns out to be a great service and therefore will make it into a solid program for all the hotfixes they release," Bouma concludes.