Visual Studio 2005 Community Technical Preview Available

Microsoft has now made the Visual Studio 2005 Community Technical Preview available
to MSDN subscribers and those in attendance at VS live. The download on MSDN is a
whopping 2.7gb DVD ISO image. I’m glad that it was put up as a single complete download.
Yes, it takes a while to transfer, but that just gives us extra time to do our real

On the topic of 2.7gb downloads, I can’t help but think back to the good old days
of modems, Bulliten Board Systems (BBS), and files over 100k being huge! Hmm… 2.7gb
at 2400 baud? if I started back in 1988, would I have the file yet? Heck, I
remember going all out and buy my first 100mb hard drive! Ahh… those were the days.

Oh ya… back to the real work.

New Whidbey Bits on their way!

Carl says that
Bill said (At VSLive) that a new version of the Whidbey bits are on their way. There
has been a lot of talk recently about these early releases of code. I think it’s a
great move to get the tools in the hands of developers as early as possible. As one recent
article quotes
Prashant Sridharan, lead product manager for Visual Studio, as
saying “Developers will install anything, whereas an IT guy in the data center
will not,”  While that’s probably true, I think the importance is in getting
developers comfortable with the tools as early as possible.

This new “community technical previews“ version will apparently be dsitributed
Thursday to… I’m not sure to who, but I’ll make sure I start checking my mailbox
that day.

I hadn’t noticed this before, but it also appears that Microsoft is officially referrign
to Whidbey as Visual Studio 2005 and the .Net Framework 2.0. They have an excellent
roadmap available here

April TRINUG Meeting: Doug Turnure on Indigo

April Triangle .Net User Group Meeting 4/14/2004

of Indigo

Service oriented
architectures are becoming the norm for enterprise systems in today’s distributed
world. The heart of SOA is messaging standards, and the defacto standard for messaging
is web services. Web Services are quickly moving to the forefront of corporate information
exchange, and XML is the most common messaging format to describe the data. Indigo
is the codename for Microsoft’s new messaging framework. It provides rich support
for SOA that is complementary to traditional object-oriented approaches. Indigo represents
the best of .NET Remoting, ASP.NET, .NET Enterprise Services, and web service Extensions
(WSE), rolling them into a unified programming and administrative model. Indigo supports
standards such as HTTP, XML, and SOAP, and delivers a mechanism for secure, reliable,
transacted messaging. Indigo will be included in the next version of Microsoft Windows,
code-named “Longhorn”, although it should be available independently at
some time before Longhorn ships.

This talk will provide an introduction and preview of Indigo. It will include both
the mechanics of using Indigo, and sufficient background as to address why Indigo
is so important. Come and learn how to take advantage of the coming standard for SOA
on the Windows platform.

Instructor Bio :

Doug Turnure is a Developer Evangelist with Microsoft Corporation, focusing on .NET
technologies. He serves numerous enterprise clients as a developer, author, trainer,
and occasional conference speaker. His specialties include .NET internals, memory
management, and distributed communication, although he enjoys anything pertaining
to .NET. Prior to joining Microsoft, he spent five years as an instructor and course
author with DevelopMentor and Aggelos, Inc. His primary topics of instruction include
VB.NET, C#, and ASP.NET. Doug is currently based in Atlanta, Georgia.  

For more information please visit the TRINUG

UPDATE: For some background
info, check out this

IssueVision Sample Code

If you went to DevDays make sure you take a look at the IssueVision sample code located
on the DevDays 2004 DVD. It has some great example code for all sorts of things ranging
from installation and deployment to using web services to update data in a semi-connected

it also seems that a new IssueVision 1.1 version of the code is going to be available
at some point in time to and will implement code using WSE 2.0.

// In IssueVision 1.0, this method returns an instance
of the web reference for

// the IssueVisionService, with credentials attached
as a custom SOAP header.
// In version 1.1, the section marked below will
be replaced with WSE 2.0 logic.

Stepping through code like this is a great way to learn how things are
done. I hope more application examples are on their way from Microsoft.



The New Microsoft Way?

The New Microsoft Way? Thursday, March 11, 2004 6:00 PM Today in an email response
to being forwarded a News.Com Link to a story about Yukon and Whidbey being delayed,
I started to think about what that really meant. I sense a new trend in Microsoft’s
approach to things and in the end, even with delays, I wonder if it will result in
a faster adoption rate of their new products.

Here’s my theory, and I stress MY THEORY, I have nothing official to really it on.

In the “Old Microsoft” way, a new product would be designed and eventually distributed
to a small private group of beta testers. By that point in the development cycle,
they really could only try to fix things, and would have a hard time to go back to
change or add any features. A short while later, the product would be released and
start to be really put through the paces. For many organizations the RTM would be
their first look at the product and some would be willing to move to it once a service
pack fixed any issues they found. The timeframe from announcement to beta to release
may seem quicker, but I think there is a large timeframe between product development
/ announcement to market acceptance.

In the “New Microsoft” way, if we take Whidbey as an example, they share it with a
small private test group at a very, very early stage. Then while the product is still
somewhere in Alpha they release it to a larger test group, in this case the 6000+
developers at PDC in Oct 2003 (and recently a number of additional developers at DevDays)
and ask them to put it through the paces asking for feedback. One thing to point out
is they are not just asking what is a bug, but rather what do you like, don’t like,
would like in this release. This is still an Alpha version! They have been receiving
an enormous amount of feedback about bugs and features that they would not get until
it was almost publicly released the old way. People are already testing and working
with Whidbey, and it’s far from done!

Beta 1 is hopefully going to have some huge improvements, many driven from early feedback
when it was possible to change things. By the time it’s released to market, it should
be solid, developers will know and understand it, and they can start using it immediately.

Robert Scoble’s response to
this issue that ship dates are often pushed back because “the quality isn’t good enough”.
Do we really want to force something that is not ready? Do we want to start hearing
“that feature or bug is a great suggestion, but we’ll have to get to it later because
of the ship date”? Are we angry about the ship date because we can’t use it in our
production apps, or because we can’t have the completed version of a new toy? I think
at this point in the game it’s important in the big picture that these major projects
including Whidbey, Longhorn, and Yukon be done right.

I think the New Microsoft way provides a more transparent process will provide a much
better product in the end, and will get it in the hands of users sooner, allowing
earlier testing which will build a higher level of confidence to use the release version
sooner, which I think in the end will result in a better product with better acceptance.

That’s my two bits worth anyway!


Created with Microsoft Office OneNote 2003 One place for all your notes

DevDays 2004 Raleigh-Durham

A big thanks to Doug and all the speakers for putting on a very enjoyable and informative
DevDays 2004 in Durham, NC.

Some of the key points that made it into my notes are:

    • Security – Care about, learn about it, deal with it
      Service Pack 2 – Be ready for it. See the “Windows XP Service Pack 2 –
      Security Information for Developers document on MSDN
    • Use stored procedures! At the very least, used parameterized queries. Dynamic SQL
      statements can be very, very bad. SPs are secure, fast, and easy to maintain.
    • Strongly Name your assemblies – Versioning doesn’t work unless the assemblies
      are strongly named.
    • Smart Clients – As defined by Todd Fine : “The best of thick and thin
    • Auto updating apps are super cool. Todd did a great demo of using MSI to deploy an
      application once and keep it updating automagically Check out the AppUpdater
    • Issue Vision, a sample source code application distributed at the event has
      some great smart client example code for handling semi-connected data access, threading,
      and much more.

The crowd was very excited by the Whidbey demos. Todd Fine and Ken Spencer did a great
job of showing off some of the great new features, including many time saving shortcuts
for developers. The Whitehorse modeling demos looked very slick, especially how it
reacted to code changes.

Overall it was a great event that I hope continues to happen frequently. Thanks to
everybody that stopped by the TRINUG user group table and said hello. On a semi-related
note, Doug Turnure from Microsoft that did the opening keynote will be presenting
Indigo (A must see!) at the April Triangle .Net Users
Group meeting

TRINUG – Guest Speaker Peter Debetta

Tonight at the Triangle .Net Users group we were
treated to the best SQL Server Yukon presentation I’ve seen since PDC. Ok, so it’s
the only one I’ve seen since PDC, but it was worth the wait! Peter
from Wintellect fame gave us an
excellent look at the new .Net technologies that will be a part of Yukon and lead
some great discussions on when and where using .Net code instead of T-SQL makes sense.

One of the key take aways from the presentation was that juts becuase you can .Net
code, it doesn’t mean it’s always the right thing. T-SQL still remains the method
of choice when simply dealing with the data.

Be sure to check out Peter’s Blog and watch for
his upcoming
. Thanks again from the group!


Blogging from DevDays in Durham

Devdays is here!

Doug Turnure and a cast of others have started the day with a keynote. Following a
couple video’s about the IRL and using .Net technologies to “do more with
less“, they are focusing on a number of new Microsoft products including Biztalk Server,
SQL Reporting Serivices, and Whitehorse. SQL reporting services is one of those great
looking tools that I really need to take a closer look at. It looks like a very effective
way to provide end users with reports on data. Whitehorse, shown by Ken Spencer is
described as an “Integrated model-driven set of design tools to increase productivity
and predicatability in design, development, deployment and maintenance of service-oriented
distrubted systems“. Translation: Very Cool! It’s far from just another code generator.

I’m going to be attending the Smart Client presentations and will post anything of

Greg and I will be at the TRINUG user group table
during the breaks meeting and hope to make many new .Net contacts.