At long last, the Visual Studio 2008 feature matrix is available.
I was mainly interested in the differences between Standard and Professional. For my own use to play around with at home, it looks like Standard would be plenty good enough: the only thing it’s missing that I find even remotely interesting is Object Test Bench.
(Now I just need to find the cash to buy it, since they refused to honor my certificate that was supposed to be good for employee pricing.)
Things that are only in Professional
- Object Test Bench
- 64-bit C++ compiler
- Crystal Reports
- Server Explorer (explore remote databases and services)
- Extra templates:
- “Database Project” template: a “project template for direct manipulation of database objects and data”. I’m not sure what they mean — what does it mean to make a database “project”?
- SQL Server Project template (I think this is for .NET stored procs. You should be able to create them without the template, though.)
- Office 2003 Add-in support:
- Office 2003 Add-in project templates (Standard does have the Shared Add-in template, but not the Excel-, Outlook-, etc.-specific ones)
- Action Pane designer
- Outlook Form Region
- Ribbon designers
- Windows Mobile development tools
- Visual Studio Team System stuff (Microsoft’s test framework, etc.)
Things that are only in Standard
- MSDN Express Library (the one tailored for the Express SKUs). Is this a typo? They do say that the full MSDN Library is also available.
- Database Explorer (presumably Professional’s “Server Explorer” is meant to be a superset of this)
- Professional’s installer is supposed to give you more control over which optional components you install. It’s not clear whether this is just marketing-speak for “there’s more stuff so there are more checkboxes”.