April 2006 - Posts

Spell-checking HTML and ASP.NET page content within the VS 2005 IDE

Mikhail from the Visual Studio Web Tools Team just published a cool free plug-in for VS 2005 (that he built in his free-time) that provides support for spell-checking HTML and ASP.NET page content within the VS 2005 IDE:

You can download and learn more about it here

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Made in Express Contest

Win $10,000 with Contest-Winning Visual Studio Express Application. Find out more here
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Cross Posting

For all bloggers on SGDN, you can configure cross posting in by specifying this endpoint. Take note that our CS uses .text blog engine. And yes, this entry is from a cross post from my desktop.
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Improving your web application user experience with Atlas

Improving your web applications user experience with Atlas Shawn Burke, Agility Team Atlas allows ASP.NET developers to add great client-side richness to their web application using server-side methodologies using Extender Controls. Learn how the Agility Team is launching a project to leverage the power of the community to build a library of Extenders for all developers to use. Join Meeting
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Test Blogging from Desktop

Test bloggging from Desktop.
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Key to Successive Enterprise Application Performance

This is extracted from an article from SDA Asia on Performance Testing Methodology Best Practises, written by Steven Haines. Although the article is written for Java environments, I think it's pertinent for almost any software developers in order to ensure that the desired performance requirements of the final software be met.

Performance Testing must be conducted at phases within the development lifecycle, akin to building security into your product, and here's the recommended phases recommended by Steven Haines

  • Unit Testing
  • Application Integration Test
  • Application Integration Load Test
  • Production Staging Test
  • Production Staging Load Test
  • Capacity Assessment
  • More importantly, clearly defined performance requirements (or SLAs) must be available. I'll continue to blog about how to carry this out in a .NET environment in a later post. Back to work for now.
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List of ASP.NET planned for April 06

Quoting from Scott Guthrie's post, the current list of ASP.NET related things planned in April includes:

 

VS 2005 Web Application Project: As I mentioned in this earlier post, we are a few days away from shipping the feature-complete release candidate of the VS 2005 Web Application Project (see http://webproject.scottgu.com for more details if you haven’t heard of it).  This refresh supports auto-VS 2003 upgrades (just choose file->open project, select the VS 2003 project, and it will convert it to a WAP project for you), adds all missing features from the previous previews and a ton of new ones, and fixes all reported bugs.  We are looking to have it on the web for anyone to download early next week.  We'll then quickly turn around and fix any final bugs people find, and post the final drop on the web (this build will also be rolled into VS 2005 SP1). 

 

Atlas Refresh: We shipped our first go-live release of Atlas last week at the MIX conference (you can find tutorials and learn all about it here).  We will be shipping the next refresh of it in April, which will provide bug fixes and more features.  Note that all releases of Atlas will have the go-live license going forward – so this new one obviously will too, and support production deployments.

 

Atlas Control Pack: In addition to shipping the core Atlas framework and runtime, we are also going to soon release the first drop of a new Atlas Control Pack that leverages the Atlas framework to deliver a suite of cool re-usable UI controls to make common Ajax scenarios super easy (cascading dropdown lists, drag-panels, collapsible panels, etc, etc).  We’ll be posting more details on this project shortly.

 

CSS Control Adapters: One common request we get from developers is for them to have the ability to better customize the markup generated by the built-in ASP.NET server controls.  ASP.NET 2.0 actually includes an extensibility mechanism called “control adapters” that allow just this (basically you can build a class that replaces the rendering semantics of a control, and simply register it in your web.config file to override a control’s built-in rendering – no code or object model changes required in your app).  Our plan is to ship a suite of CSS control adapters (with full source) in the next few weeks for a number of the built-in ASP.NET 2.0 controls (including the treeview and menu controls) that demonstrate how to use this mechanism to enable pure CSS based styling (for example: the menu will generate <ul><li></ul> elements and allow a developer apply a CSS stylesheet to customize the rendering).  This will be available in a few weeks.

 

Data Tutorials: I started some popular ASP.NET 2.0 Data tutorials over Christmas that people really liked (you can read the two big ones I built here and here).  My original goal was to build a lot more of them – although unfortunately work got too busy for me to keep up.  The good news is that we are now working with Scott Mitchell (who is a much better author than me!) to create and publish a 38-part ASP.NET data tutorial series that covers all of the common data scenarios with ASP.NET 2.0, the ObjectDataSource control, and the data controls.  The first installment of these step-by-step tutorials will show up on www.asp.net and/or MSDN in a few weeks, and will be available in both VB and C# versions.

 

“How Do I” Videos: We’ve had absolutely awesome feedback on the ASP.NET “How do I?” video series we published last month.  If you haven’t watched them yet, I’d recommend spending a few minutes checking them out here.  They really provide a great way to come up to speed on the new ASP.NET 2.0 features, and to watch in action how things work.  We are going to be working on producing many more of these in the months ahead, and hope to have the next set of installments start showing up regularly on the www.asp.net site in April.    

 

RSS Tool-Kit Update: Dmitry beat me to this “coming soon” post and released an update to his great ASP.NET 2.0 RSS Toolkit this weekend.  If you haven’t checked it out yet, you definitely should.  I have some simple tutorials on using it here.

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