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MSDN Reader is now available for download!


Have you ever wanted to read development-focused content through the slick NY Times Reader experience? Me too! The MSDN Reader provides offline caching/reading of MSDN Magazine articles, content annotation, and content sharing through an intuitive user interface. The source for this application is provided in the releases section. Feel free to play with the code provided here or check out for more information on building Syndicated Client Experiences.


MSDN Reader installer is located here:

Last edited Jan 17 2008 at 9:49 PM  by GazSam, version 15
JeffreyRennie wrote  Jan 30 2008 at 1:50 AM  
The installer crashed when I tried to run it.

(f98.5f8): Access violation - code c0000005 (!!! second chance !!!)
eax=00000001 ebx=00000001 ecx=00000467 edx=7c90eb94 esi=00000000 edi=7e4191c6
eip=00000001 esp=0012feec ebp=0012ff18 iopl=0 nv up ei pl zr na pe nc
cs=001b ss=0023 ds=0023 es=0023 fs=003b gs=0000 efl=00000246
00000001 ?? ???
0:000> k
ChildEBP RetAddr
WARNING: Frame IP not in any known module. Following frames may be wrong.
0012fee8 004013b9 0x1
0012ff18 004010da DotNetInstaller+0x13b9
0012ff28 0041286f DotNetInstaller+0x10da
0012ffc0 7c816fd7 DotNetInstaller+0x1286f
0012fff0 00000000 kernel32!BaseProcessStart+0x23

BharatGodha wrote  Jan 30 2008 at 9:01 PM  
The installation when through smoothly for me.
However its saving all the articles to desktop and I couldn't find the setting to change the default location.
Any suggestion?

GazSam wrote  Jan 30 2008 at 10:18 PM  
Thanks for the comment.
I'm assuming that you are asking about the behavior when a user clicks the 'Save' button on an article. Unfortunately, there isn't a setting that allows you to change where the article is saved. Since we provided the code, however, you can make this change yourself. I believe this functionality is actually in one of the DLLs that the project references so you might have to do a bit of digging through the SCE Starter Kit (beta) in order to change this functionality.

Jun1st wrote  Jan 31 2008 at 10:48 AM  
do I need to subscribe something first before I can read it throw the reader?

Bespi wrote  Jan 31 2008 at 1:02 PM  
Please add proxy support.
The remote server returned an error: (407) Proxy Authentication Required.

Javierdj wrote  Jan 31 2008 at 9:47 PM  
Please!!!! add proxy support
In MSDN Reader.MsdnReader.subscription.template file there's no entry for Proxy!!!!
Thanks in advance,

FusionGuy wrote  Feb 6 2008 at 8:53 PM  
Could you please update to include proxy support, or at least the ability to automatically obtain proxy settings from IE? Those of use behind ISA servers or other proxies are out of luck at the moment. Thanks!

GazSam wrote  Feb 7 2008 at 10:24 AM  
Thanks for the comments guys...Adding proxy support makes sense, I'll definitely look into it.

Zubairdotnet wrote  Feb 10 2008 at 8:21 AM  
The installation went fine but I'm getting a Server unavailable error.

vRITHNER wrote  Feb 15 2008 at 9:54 AM  
Setup crashed when installing on my Dell XPm1710 on Vista 64bits (I suspect Synchronization Fwk or SQL Ce to not work on x64)
Setup worked fine on my Vista 32bits version on my other pcs

dgcarter wrote  Feb 18 2008 at 10:13 PM  
If you're working as a software developer, c an I suggest dustbin emptying as a more appropriate career?

elzingap wrote  Feb 25 2008 at 11:49 AM  
Nice work, I like the interface and smooth reading of the articles.
However, when I add something to the reader list, it disappears the next time I start up. Is there a fix for this?

pliebrand wrote  Feb 27 2008 at 5:59 PM  
Is it just me, or does the information received via the reader appear to be out dated?

mcp111 wrote  Mar 6 2008 at 10:55 PM  
Some suggestions:
1. We should be able to create sub-folders in the Reading List
2. When we click on an article, there should be a status message like "Working..." so we know something is happening
3. We should be able to sort articles by date and the latest articles should appear at the top by default

mcp111 wrote  Mar 7 2008 at 8:48 PM  
We should be able to search by article date so we can quickly get the newest articles.

sergei_shaikin wrote  Apr 1 2008 at 9:23 AM  
Nice work. Would be great if Technet Magazine could be integrated with MSDN Reader. Name it something like Technet Magazine Reader.

mcp111 wrote  Apr 3 2008 at 1:29 AM  
I installed MSDN Reader and it has a "Subscription center". Currently it only shows MSDN Reader. What other applications are planned?

rcunday wrote  May 20 2008 at 5:37 PM  
Why was so much space in the user interface given to the static MSDN reader bitmap banner? Is seems like branding overkill and the available space should be given to the MSDN content material instead.

mcp111 wrote  May 20 2008 at 7:52 PM  
MSDN Reader gives visual studio exception dialog when starting up with Windows.

mcp111 wrote  May 28 2008 at 5:24 PM  
When I click on any article in MSDN Reader I just get a blank page. I've uninstalled and reinstalled MSDN Reader several times. Any ideas???

wpilgri wrote  Jun 9 2008 at 5:11 PM  
I also get a blank page when I try to click any article. Uninstall/re-Install doesn't fix anything. Looks like it has potential....if it only worked.

si wrote  Jul 16 2008 at 5:46 AM  
As per comments made by mcp111 and wpilgri, I'm afraid it's all style and no substance...looks great but blank pages on any article I try to read. I'll stick with Google reader and RSS.

GazSam wrote  Jul 22 2008 at 7:30 PM  
Hi folks. Sorry for the delay in responding. The blank page issue is caused by a change in the way MSDN magazine publishes their article content. We're working on rebuilding the feed to accommodate for the changed schema and hopefully will post a version that pulls in content from 2001 to May of 2008 shortly. I will post a comment here when the new version is available.

SSSikora wrote  Aug 25 2008 at 5:26 PM  
Is there still no update for this project to correct the blank page problem?

GazSam wrote  Sep 22 2008 at 9:20 PM  
I believe the blank page issue has been corrected. I've installed the applications from on a clean Vista machine, let the application synchronize for about 20 minutes (it pulls down lots of content on the first run), and confirmed that all articles are available for viewing. Please respond back if you are still having issues.

JPC wrote  Oct 9 2008 at 8:43 PM  
After downloading and installing the application, I am not even able to start the MSDN Reader (With or without the subscription manager). As soon as I click on the icon to run it, it shows "MsdnReader.exe has stopped working" and I have to close the app. Any solution? I'am running Vista 32bit.

devcube wrote  Oct 9 2008 at 10:00 PM  
Yeah, I have the same issue as JPC and vRITHNER). Subscription manager starts fine but if I open it and click msdn reader it crashes with "MsdnReader.exe has stopped working" and then just after that I get "SubscriptionManager.exe has stopped working". If I try to start subscription manager and then msdn reader from the start menu or just msdn reader without subscription manager from the start menu I get the same error.

So I can't start it and I would really like to use it :S Running Vista x64 Ultimate with all the latest updates from WindowsUpdate of course.

hippo wrote  Nov 5 2008 at 3:22 PM  
:o( I have the same problem as devcube and JPC, however there is an interesting behaviour -
1. when I run the MSDN reader after installation - it crashes
2. When I open the surcecode (solution) and run it from VS - it runs OK.
3. When I rebuild the solution and run it from bin/Release - it crashes...

hmmmm.... where is the difference?
I am using Vista Ultimate 32bit.

GazSam wrote  Nov 19 2008 at 12:52 AM  
Ok, sorry for the delay guys. Looks like the app installs and runs fine on a box with .NET Framework 3.0 (plain old Vista) and should run with .NET Framework 3.5 RTM. Can you guys confirm the version of the framework you've got installed?

I believe there is some conflict with SQL CE in 3.5 SP1 that is breaking this app. I’ve been able to fix this problem by removing all references to SQLCE dlls from the project:

<Install location>\MsdnReaderSourceCode\MsdnReaderSourceCode\References\


I’ve also replaced these with the newest versions for good measure (should be installed on a 3.5SP1 machine):
C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server Compact Edition\v3.5

The compiled binaries (\Debug, \Release) run fine with this fix. The current installer will probably still lay down the old dlls so you might need to jump into your appdata folder c:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Apps\2.0\<guid>\msdn..exe and remove/replace these files to get the app to stop crashing from the default install.

Please give this a shot and let me know if it works.

JMitchem wrote  Dec 8 2008 at 6:38 PM  
Yes, that worked.

I deleted all 4 of the files from the AppData folder, where you mentined. It didn't work at that point.

Then I copied in 3 of them (couldn't find SQLCE35EN.dll) from C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server Compact Edition\v3.5

It worked then.

murpheux wrote  Jun 3 2009 at 8:45 AM  
This is a very cool tool. Like the idea so much just like the Architecture Journal reader. Unlike the architecture journal reader, this one is so buggy (sorry MSDN reader team). Just wondered why so much of it's problems has not bee fixed since the last release. Is this an abandoned project/product?

sudhirgg2 wrote  Jan 18 2010 at 7:37 AM  
I am not able to view any article. Whenever I click on any article, I get blank page and following error in log file:
2010-01-18T12:42:02+05:30,Error,WebRequest: Get response failed. URI ''. Error: 'The remote server returned an error: (403) Forbidden.'

butzda wrote  May 21 2010 at 8:42 AM  
Unhandled exception at 0x06511902 in MsdnReader.exe: 0xC0000005: Access violation reading location 0x00000000.
This happend after I start the MSDN reader. Any solutions?

DigiPug wrote  Feb 21 2011 at 4:38 PM  
The installer worked (at least it claims it worked), but the app just crashes on launch attempt.

Demeter wrote  Jul 18 2013 at 5:32 AM  
Dear Microsoft, and Developer GazSam:
You could have won over so many "high-end" users if you had adapted MSDN Reader as a replacement for Google Reader when it shut down on 1 July 2013. I realize that that wasn't what MSDN Reader was intended to do, but RSS feeds shouldn't be that different, especially if they aren't paid subscriptions. It sounds like MSDN Reader even had folders!

It isn't too late, especially if MSDN Reader could accommodate OPML formatting to port existing Google Reader data. I am certain that Microsoft could even charge for a Google Reader replacement. Google+ is full of sorrowful developers, researchers and academicians, mourning the passing of Google Reader. Think of the goodwill and future customers! I would be an advocate. MSDN Reader has a similar look as Google Reader. I was a devoted user too....

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