Developers say there's a dirty little secret about Longhorn that few Softies are discussing publicly: Longhorn won't be based on the .Net Framework. We're still expecting that the .Net Framework will ship with Longhorn–on the CD and/or "in the box" in some way. But the .Net Framework won't be at Longhorn's core, we hear.
And yep it is true. Windows Vista Beta 1 out-of-the box doesn't use the .NET Framework in any way! To prove it I took this screenshot of Sysinternals Process Explorer which highlights processes that have the CLR loaded in yellow:
Even worse "Avalon" and "Indigo" (or should I say "Windows Presentation Foundation" and "Windows Communication Foundation") and the rest of WinFX are not even installed! This is the "out-of-the-box" view of the .NET Framework directory. Note that the nice smooth big icons (in large icon view) for some files and folders were not produced using Avalon!
It seems the .NET Framework is only used for ASP.NET. Internet Information Server (IIS) is installed by default. The service is disabled by default but is easily enabled using the IIS management console plugin. It is not easy to determine the version number of IIS, but it seems to be a derivative of IIS 6.0 and not IIS 7.0. IIS is not configured to run ASP.NET by default and I found no other way to enable it than to run aspnet_regiis -i from the .NET Framework folder.
WinFX can be found on the Windows Vista installation DVD in the Support folder: