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Visual Studio 2010 and .NET 4.0 Beta 1

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After numerous CTPs, Microsoft has released Beta 1 of Visual Studio 2010 and .NET 4.0. This long awaited release, initially available only to MSDN subscribers, includes ASP.NET 4.0 enhancements, improved SharePoint Development, better support for parallel programming and cloud development, and new application lifecycle management capabilities. After Wednesday May 20th, Beta should be publically available via MS downloads (not active until Wednesday).

Arguably the most anticipated component of .NET Framework 4.0, ASP.NET 4.0 will have many new features and improvements:

  • Core improvements: extensible output caching and session state improvements
  • Improved AJAX libraries, including a better JavaScript API
  • WebForms improvements: ClientID manipulation, more granular ViewState control, improved databound controls (ListView)
  • Routing
  • Dynamic Data

It should be noted that ASP.NET MVC is not included in VS 2010 Beta 1. "Right now, if you try and open an MVC project with VS 2010 Beta 1, you’ll get some error message about the project type not being supported. The easy fix for now is to remove the ASP.NET MVC ProjectTypeGuid entry."

Another goal for the next version of Visual Studio and the .NET Framework is to support emerging trends. Expect more integration with cloud development, specifically Windows Azure, and parallel multi-thread programming.

Parallel programming improvements include native C++ libraries that use lambda functions and align well with STL and Parallel Extensions to the .NET Framework offers support for imperative data and task parallelism, declarative data parallelism.

The .NET Framework 4.0 also provides the core framework support to build parallel applications through technologies such as P-LIINQ and parallel language semantics and framework components. Visual Studio 2010 provides integrated parallel development support. In Visual Studio 2010 the debugger is aware of the parallel nature of code and can present the state of the application execution during debugging across the different parallel execution units. The debugger also has custom displays for parallel code such as task & thread windows and a “multi” or “cactus” stack view window that graphically shows the execution path of the individual tasks.

The Visual Studio UI shell has been rewritten in WPF with a focus on removing clutter, providing richer action feedback, and improving floating documents and windows.

SharePoint development in Visual Studio 2010 will also see improvements through enhanced customization abilities with new templates, designers and explorers; integrated management of workflows association and initiation; F5 deployment and debugging for SharePoint apps; and improved SharePoint site navigation with Server Explorer

Visual Studio Team System also has many new features including improved application lifecycle management, the Microsoft Test Runner allowing historical debugging, realtime code modeling tools, test impact analyzers, and enhanced version control capabilities with gated check-ins, branch visualization, and build workflows.

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