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What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

VileReynard
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What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

I've received a question from a friend, who is using Windows Lips are sealed and always applies all Microsoft updates.
He is on dialup...
He writes:-
Quote
My Windows Automatic Update tells me I need a 248.3 Mb service pack updated on my home computer called the NET framework 3.5 servicepack.

I`ve somehow traced a screen on Microsoft Update to submit comments/feedback and asked Microsoft to clarify this giant size downlaod

Out of pure curiousity, would you know anything on this issue ?  Do you think Microsoft have mistakenly tried sending an Update to domestic home computer users that might actually have been meant for professional programme writers only, who deal with the  NET  framework.

PS. A 248.3 Mb download requires 14 hours over a dial-up connection.    That would do wonders for my phone bill !

I`ve gone to the internet and searched on Google, which directed me to the Microsoft website ..... which had a dedicated page for the servicepack but it didn`t make sense to me.

The feedback box I used for my message was on a page accessed via a hyperlink in the original notification box that opens when double-clicking the yellow shield icon in my toolbar (the shield that appears when theres a Windows update for my computer).  It all appeared "normal" to me.

I shall wait to see if Microsoft answer me.

I don't know what NET does, or why anyone would want it - obviously I could do the download for him onto CD,
but then we would face the problem of doing the update from CD  Smiley
The page that M$ have on this service pack seems to just consist of explaining how to fix all the ways it might not work.
Please could a Windows expert advise?
I'm pretty sure he's still on XP.
Thanks.

14 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

99% certain he does not need it.
.NET framework is a set of M$ written libraries that allow programmers to write windows applications that have a small size. In effect, instead of including a load of window libraries in the .exe, the program will use the .NET libraries that are already on the system.
This is a microsoft propriatory runtime environment and very few applications actually use it, and those that do probably only use V1 or V2 of .NET framework anyway.
He would know if he needs it as any app relying on a particular .NET version will complain and not run if it is not installed.
Lurker
Grafter
Posts: 1,867
Registered: 23-10-2008

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

To add;
Peter is absolutely right, (as it the norm!) and if an application requires a specific minimum level of .NET framework, it is often included as an installation option (with the installer present on the disk if the software is installed from physical media, or prompting for the download if its detected that the level required isn't present and the software was an installer which had been downloaded.)
p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Although I agree with all of the above, if .NET 3.5 is already installed then your friend may be missing out on potentially important security and reliability updates by not installing it. The obvious answer is to check (making sure "Show updates" is checked in Add/Remove programs) if .NET 3.5 is installed and if it is ask a friendly IT person to download the stand-alone installer onto CD for him.
It is of course possible that it was installed by Windows Update to start with but checking each of the applications installed to see which (if any) .NET libraries they use isn't worth the effort compared to simply installing the service pack.
Don't forget to recommend the user switches to PN Option 1!
VileReynard
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Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

I'm trying to get him to see that BroadBand would be cheaper and better for him.
I think all this media coverage has him scared of the internet - so he is always running
anti-virus, anti-spam, ant-spyware...
If I succeed (one day), I'll obviously get him signed up for PlusNet.  Smiley

p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Diverging a bit from the original (to my mind answered) question, but surely any NAT router broadband is safer than dialup?
VileReynard
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Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

I have told him this.
I have also told him that with broadband it's physically impossible to dial out to any super-premium rate numbers.
I have told him he won't be tieing up his phone line.
He won't listen though.  Cheesy

StickyMick
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Posts: 325
Registered: 29-11-2008

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

One reason to invest a little hard-drive space in the .NET framework is the brilliant freeware image/photo editing software called 'Paint.NET' (Surprisingly enough) Wink http://www.paint.net/
VileReynard
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Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Nice picture - have you seen "The Gimp" port for Windows at http://www.gimp.org/windows/
No .NET required  Smiley

Denzil
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Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Quote from: axisofevil
I have told him this.
I have also told him that with broadband it's physically impossible to dial out to any super-premium rate numbers.
I have told him he won't be tieing up his phone line.
He won't listen though.  Cheesy

Maybe a print of this thread might persuade him, what with all us knowledgable people saying the same thing Smiley? He still needs to run the protection software, of course, but a modern broadband router with a built in firewall has much better protection than a dialup modem. All that anti-whatever software needs to be kept updated, as well. I hate to think how long that must take on dialup. It will all be so much easier and faster with broadband. He will kick himself for not doing it sooner.
N/A

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Axis - if it is any help, I have an older friend who was on dialup light for a very long time and strongly resisted broadband (she does have a bit of a stubborn nature). We kept chipping away at her resolve, probably because I look after the computer and it was a real pain when updates, etc were required.
Eventually (last summer), PN had an offer on Option 1 which meant that for 3 months the cost was the same as dialup.
By then, she came to the conclusion that she ought to have broadband and before she could change her mind we had it installed and working. She has never looked back and is delighted with it, particularly as she loves the telephone and is now not blocked from calls when online. She is a bit of a technophobe but she is getting more pleasure from the 'puter now, and tends to use it more. Mention this to your friend and see if it changes his mind.
With regards to the massive download, I was doing work on said friend's computer yesterday (re-applying the updates after a repair of XP) and I too was alarmed to see the size of this. Anyway, I thought it best to get all the updates possible as then I would know everything was done and downloaded it. Not sure after reading this that it was necessary, but it did say that it was an important one (I think) so who am I to judge?
If there is anything that would get me using Linux, it is this sort of thing. If I could get a cheap laptop with no OS I would try it tomorrow!
VileReynard
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Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Linux also has it's regular downloads.
They are all optional  - although some are for identified security problems.
Also most software is supplied via the internet as with about 20,000 free packages,
it's impossible to keep the software dependencies up-todate using any other method.
Because Linux doesn't have a registry or similar set-up, it's quite hard to seriously breal anything,
especially as system-wide configuration files can only be accessed by a administrator status user.
Linux will tell you which downloads are security downloads and which are bug fixes etc.
You can elect to only receive the security fixes.
The big downloads are replacement kernels (at least 30MBytes) - these will require a reboot,
ordinary updates don't require a reboot.
There aren't any virus / firewalls / spyware definitions to download, unless you have Windows on your network.  Smiley
Why not get that cheap laptop - or even a proper PC?
Perhaps ebay would do as resource requirements are no more than XP (and can be made to be a lot less than XP).
The slowest PC I have (I'm waiting for it to die, but it won't) is eight years old and has a 600MHz processor + 384MBytes.
It runs slowly - but reliably, a full graphical desktop.

Community Veteran
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Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

I got broadband with PlusNet in 2002 (I think), so have had it a while.
A friend of mine though has only just recently got broadband.
Apart from the speed, I don't know how anyone can put up with it now. Trouble is everyone expects you to have it now, and the size of everything has increased.
Gone are the days when a download would only involve a MB or two.
N/A

Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Axis - I check on e-Bay from time to time for a laptop but worry in case it is faulty. I no longer have peripherals for a desktop - if I had, I would go down the desktop route as these can be picked up for a song.  Regarding the download business, if, as you describe with Linux, you are told what the downloads are you can then choose whether to have them or not.
I find with Windows (particularly the .net mentioned above), I don't have a clue. Then unless you go into the Microsoft update site and amend it, you find it downloading massive files for Office update. Got caught out with this yesterday as I forgot to disable Office updates and found loads of them on the computer.
Trouble is if you disable automatic updates Vista keeps nagging you - can't win!
VileReynard
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Re: What does a NET framework 3.5 servicepack do?

Have you considered Open Office - runs on Linux and has a Windows port and is free.