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Microsoft Releases ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions Preview

The Model View Controller (MVC) architecture is valued for its enforced separation of concerns in development. In Web development, MVC breaks apps into interfaces (views), business logic (models) and a controller that moderates the traffic flow. This approach is hugely useful for enterprise-scale development, where code maintenance and unit-level QA become paramount.

The MVC architecture has long been used in Web app frameworks like Ruby on Rails and Apache Struts. Now, Microsoft is pushing ASP.NET Web application development in the direction of MVC, with the release of the ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions.

As RDN Senior Editor Kathleen Richards reported Monday, the addition of MVC within ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions could plug a big hole in Microsoft's Web development story.

"ASP.NET is so easy to use for the rapid app developer, but for the enterprise folks, the people who need to build maintainable code, ASP.NET is a nightmare because of the design style that Microsoft did," said Don Demsak, a New Jersey-based .NET solutions consultant and blogger ( "It was originally designed for the original VB6 crowd -- using WinForms -- to switch over to the Internet. They did a lot of techniques to make it seamless for them but in taking those shortcuts, in dealing with that encapsulation there, it made it harder to maintain, especially for folks who like to use design patterns to build their code."

Microsoft's Developer Division GM Scott Guthrie said developers can continue to work in the Web Forms component control-driven model of ASP.NET, but with ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions, the option to adopt MVC design patterns is now there. Developers can even choose to use both in the same application, Guthrie said.

So what will you do? Is the MVC model in ASP.NET something you expect to move to in the coming months? E-mail me at [email protected].

Posted by Michael Desmond on 12/12/2007

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