All examples in this book are with regard to version 5.0 of the C# language and the .NET Framework 4.5 platform, which is the latest as of this book’s publishing. All examples of using the Visual Studio integrated development environment are with regard to version 2012 of the product, which were also the latest at the time of writing this book. 

The Microsoft Visual Studio 2012 integrated development environment (IDE) has a free version, suitable for beginner C# programmers, called Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Desktop. The difference between the free and the full version of Visual Studio (which is a commercial software product) lies in the availability of some functionalities, which we will not need in this book.

Although we use C# 5 and Visual Studio 2012, most examples in this book will work flawlessly under .NET Framework 2.0 / 3.5 / 4.0 and C# 2.0 / 3.5 / 4.0 and can be compiled under Visual Studio 2005 / 2008 / 2010

It is of no great significance which version of C# and Visual Studio you’ll use while you learn to program. What matters is that you learn the principles of programming and algorithmic thinking! The C# language, the .NET Framework platform and the Visual Studio integrated development environment are just tools and you can exchange them for others at any time. If you read this book and VS2012 is not currently the latest, be sure almost all of this book’s content will still be the same due to backward compatibility.