Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Important releases from Microsoft you may have missed

If you've not been keeping-up with the Microsoft blogs lately, there's a good chance you have missed some pretty cool releases from the folks up in Redmond. Microsoft's been busy releasing betas and CTPs and altogether new tools for developers, and primarily web developers at that. In typical "Microsoft of today" fashion, all of these releases are free, and most of them are available with source code on CodePlex.

What have you missed?
  1. ASP.NET AJAX 4.0 Preview 6 - This is the client-side portion of ASP.NET 4.0 that includes all of the cool news things like client-side templates, client-side data context, and client-side "controls." I've been using and demoing these bits since Preview 4, and I think they are one of my favorite new features in ASP.NET 4.0. You can use them today, though, since all you need are the new JavaScript files. Download on CodePlex.
  2. Microsoft Ajax Minifier - One thing that jQuery has bested Microsoft on for quite some time is library size. jQuery is about 50 KB in its commonly distributed "minified" format, Microsoft Ajax is about 100 KB. The new MAM tool helps close that gap by providing build-time support for minifying any JavaScript file, including Microsoft's Ajax libraries. It's not the first JavaScript minifier, but MSFT is claiming it is one of the most efficient, and the MSBuild scripts don't hurt its likability, either. Download on CodePlex.
  3. ASP.NET MVC 2 Preview 2 - The second update to the ASP.NET MVC v2 project is now available. Preview 2 adds support for things like "Areas," model validation providers, and client-side input validation. Phil does a better job elaborating. If you're an ASP.NET MVC convert (or fan) and you want to get your hands on the latest and greatest, the source is now available (as usual) on CodePlex.
  4. ASP.NET MVC 2 Upgrade Tool - Just squeezing-in before the bell for this blog post, Microsofty Eilon Lipton has also just released a simple tool that helps you upgrade ASP.NET MVC 1 projects to ASP.NET MVC 2. Simple tool, but helpful perhaps for any of you ready to upgrade your MVC 1 sites to a preview framework...Download from his blog.
  5. Ajax Control Toolkit - Do you use the Microsoft Ajax Control Toolkit? If so, you might want to check out their latest release (published earlier this month). It contains a few new controls- SeaDragon control (for Deep Zoom images) and AsyncFileUpload- and a lot of bug fixes. The controls and the source are...everyone now...available for download on CodePlex.
  6. Visual Studio 2010 Beta 2 - Last but certainly not least (and just publicly revealed), Microsoft is finally releasing a broad, public beta of Visual Studio 2010. Beta 2 will be broadly available tomorrow (Wednesday) and it will be your chance to start playing with all of the goodies in .NET 4.0. VS 2010 also sports a pretty nice visual makeover (new logo below), so unlike the upgrade experiences from VS.NET to VS 2008 ("Okay...looks...the same..."), you'll instantly notice that VS 2k10 is a major upgrade. Details on Hanselman's blog. Download from Microsoft.
And I think that's all for October. I could be wrong. Microsoft is updating at a furious pace as we head towards PDC, so it is tough to keep-up. At the very least, this is a great collection of updates any ASP.NET developer should check-out. Grab the updates from Microsoft and try them out this week...because in a few weeks, you'll have lots of new Telerik code to play with!


Anonymous said...

nice article, thxs

Remco Ros said...

Microsoft Sync Framework 2.0 just got released too

rtpHarry said...

I didn't really stop and think just how much has been released recently until I saw this post.

The best bit about the AjaxControlToolkit was the new feature which allows you to master user friendly data of birth selection with the calendar extender.