Microsoft Abandons Expression Web which is now FREE

Expression Web is available FREE!

This announcement appears on the Microsoft site:  Microsoft Expression Changes. While expected by many of us, it is sad that MS is abandoning Expression Web in favor of Visual Studio 2012! From the MS announcement:

The proliferation of rich interactive web applications across the cloud and mobile devices continues to create new opportunities for creative design and development. As these technologies evolve, Microsoft is committed to providing best-in-class tools for building modern applications. In support of these industry trends Microsoft is consolidating our lead design offering — Expression and Visual Studio — to offer all of our customers a unified solution that brings together the best of Web and modern development patterns.

I urge you to read Microsoft Abandons Expression Web and Front End Web Development by Morten Rand-Hendriksen.

Expression Studio 4 Ultimate and Expression Studio 4 Web Professional are no longer available for sale. For customers who previously purchased these products, all components within Ultimate and Web Professional will be supported through their support lifecycle which I believe is:

  •  Expression Web 4 mainstream support until September 8, 2015 and the support end until September 8, 2020

Expression Design 4 and Expression Web 4 are now available for download at no charge. Technical support will NOT be available for these free versions except through the Expression Community.  

You can download the free version of Expression Web here

Download the free version of Expression Design here

While the download indicates it is the trial version, it is a fully functional program NOT the trial version and does contain a couple of bug fixes. One of the bug fixes is that you can now see the editable regions which were grayed out in EW4 SP2 but in EW4 SP2a (the free download) has been fixed.

Blend will be fully integrated with Visual Studio 2012. Blend for Visual Studio 2012 provides a rich design-centric environment for building Windows Store apps and Windows Phone apps. In addition, WPF, Silverlight and SketchFlow support is available today as a preview and will be released in Visual Studio 2012 Update 2.

Frequently Asked Questions (Answers from Microsoft)

What’s the difference between the free and paid versions of Expression Web and Design?

The features and functionality are the same between the free download and paid versions. The key difference is that the free versions are not supported, meaning they come as-is and no Microsoft technical support is available (these products are supported via the community).

How do I get technical support for Expression products?

If you purchased Expression Studio Ultimate, Expression Web Professional or Expression Encoder Pro: you’re eligible for the same support as today via assisted support, self-support, and the community. Support is available on the Expression support webpage.

If you did not purchase Expression Web or Design and are using a free version: these products are supported via the community.

  • Expression Web – Please remember that these folks are VOLUNTEERS and do NOT work for Microsoft.
  • Expression Design – Please remember that these folks are VOLUNTEERS and do NOT work for Microsoft.

I recently purchased Expression Studio 4 Ultimate or Expression Studio 4 Web Professional and would like a refund.

Contact the retailer you purchased it from to see if your purchase is within their return policy. If your purchase is not within the retailer return policy:

I have Expression Studio 4 Ultimate and/or Web Professional through a MSDN, MPN, BizSpark, WebsiteSpark, or DreamSpark subscription. Will the supported versions of the software be available to me?

You will continue to have access to the same software and support for Expression.

Expression SuperPreview Remote Beta will continue running as a service through June 30, 2013.


  1. I seldom leave a response, however after browsing a lot of remarks on this
    page Microsoft Abandons Expression Web which
    is now FREE. I actually do have 2 questions for you if it’s okay.
    Could it be just me or does it give the impression like
    a few of the responses appear like they are coming from
    brain dead individuals? 😛 And, if you are writing on additional social sites, I would like to follow you.
    Would you post a list of all of your public sites
    like your twitter feed, Facebook page or linkedin profile?

  2. Al Conterra says:

    Well, my “free version” started asking for money. I wanted to see what happens when I follow the “purchase the product online” button. It takes me to the page that says it is free…

    I later chose “continue to us the product free for 24 more days” option.

    Let’s see what happens in 24 days…


  1. […] of December 20, 2012, Expression Web 4 is available as a FREE download. See Expression Web 4 is FREE for more […]

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