I downloaded and installed Visual C++ 2005 Express Edition today.
The install went very smoothly. It downloaded and installed everything from the Internet without any problems. I would have prefered to have the whole thing as one download, so I can just save a copy to disk and reinstall it whenever I want, without having to waste more time downloading the same thing again though.
The UI is very nice, although it appears to simply be an updated version of the old Visual C++ 2003 UI. The UI has some odd bugs involving tooltips though. If you bring VC++ over another window and hover over a tooltip, it doesn't display the part of the tooltip that overlays the window beneath, but it does show the part of the tooltip that is outside of the range of the window below it. Very odd.
I'm not happy with the choice of projects available though. It does not give you the option of creating a GUI Windows application without using .NET and it does not give you the option of creating a basic DLL. This makes the program basically useless to me. Microsoft seems to be really pushing .NET to the point that they are almost pretending that you can't create applications without it! I'm looking forward to trying the full blown version of Visual Studio 2005 soon. I'm sure this functionality will return in that version. I suspect Microsoft is discouraging basic Windows GUI apps and DLLs in favor of .NET because .NET is much easier to program in, and these more complicated programming systems would drive off people new to programming.