Post-Novell, Xamarin readies Mono upgrade for developers

Aimed at Windows developers, Mono 2.12 offers benefits for multicore PCs and for creating mobile and Web apps

Xamarin, formed in May to take over Mono software development technologies from Novell, plans to roll out an upgrade to Mono this fall. The new version will feature a parallel garbage collector and a C# 5 compiler, as well as offer performance and programming improvements, the company says.

Mono is an open source platform enabling developers to leverage Windows application development skills in building software for other platforms, such as Google Android, Apple iOS, Mac OS X, and Linux; version 2.12 is due early this fall. "Mono will run faster on machines with multiple cores," thanks to the addition of parallel garbage collection, said Miguel de Icaza, CTO at Xamarin. He formerly headed the Mono project at Novell. C# 5 accommodations, meanwhile, will benefit programmers in dealing with asynchronous programming. Developers will have an easier time building "high-quality mobile and Web apps," de Icaza told He emphasized Xamarin's focus on mobile technologies.

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Also on the agenda for Xamarin are improvements to Moonlight, a version of Microsoft's Silverlight rich Internet client technology for non-Windows platforms. Moonlight is of interest to developers because it lets them share Windows code with major mobile platforms, including Android and iOS, said de Icaza.

Mono and its related technologies were deemed expendable by Attachmate after completion of its acquisition of Novell this past spring, resulting in layoffs of personnel working on the project. On Monday, Attachmate today is formally announcing Suse's granting of perpetual licenses for Xamarin to take over development of tools, including Mono, MonoTouch, Mono for Android, and Mono Tools for Visual Studio. Xamarin also will support Mono users on the Suse Linux platform. Suse became part of Attachmate as part of the Novell acquisition.

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