What information do you need when you consider purchasing a component?

UPDATE (2006-May-18): I am no longer running Xtras.Net

As many of you know, my company produces a printed catalog called Xtras.Net which we subtitle Your Source for Quality .NET Tools. However, we are revising the design for the next printing, and also adding features to our website to coordinate with some of the changes.

For example, we’d like to include icons for 100% managed code vs.Managed Code calling unmanaged DLLs vs. a wrapped ActiveX.  Another might be to denote if royalties are required.  Yet another would be WinForms vs. WebForms vs. Windows Services vs. IDE add-ins.

For the general case, are those sufficient?  Are there other things you’d like to see when consider a component purchase?


7 Replies to “What information do you need when you consider purchasing a component?”

  1. These certainly sound good! I would get a lot of value out of just the ones you listed above. You might also want to consider a ‘source code available’ icon of some sort.

    – Eric.

  2. Source available is one.
    Site license is another.
    Server licensing vs. developer licensing would be another. This kind of falls into royalties but not quite.

    We have decided against a component more than once based on painful licensing terms

  3. We’d planned to include the licensing on a per SKU/item basis, but hadn’t thought about incorporating into an icon/attribute about the product itself. Cool, thanks!

  4. How about providing an RSS feed of your component catalog? This way we can integrate it into some corporate portals and provide upto date information on the latest components and their versions.

    — Dorai

  5. >> RSS Feed

    Actually, we are planning an RSS feed for "what’s new" and "special offers" very soon. We have 95% done, we just need to finish it.

    As for the entire catalog, if you can email me and we can discuss more specifics on what you’d like to see, it is a high possibility we can do that.

    BTW, didn’t we meet at VSLive several years back?

  6. The entire catalog need not be published as an RSS stream. Let us say I am developer of VB apps. And I am looking for a certain type of components. It will be cool if I can come to your online catalog, perform a couple of queries and save them. You can generate an RSS stream from these queries and I will be able to syndicate it. Now whenever a new component gets added that satisfies my query (network components or some such thing), I will receive a notification.

    It is kind of publish/subscribe model. Even if you do it for certain categories, that may be ok. Must be easy to do.

    — Dorai

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