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Visual Studio 2010 and .NET 4.0: Winning the Name Game

If no news is good news, then the news we got from Microsoft last week was very good news indeed. Microsoft, you see, has released the official names of the upcoming versions of .NET Framework and Visual Studio.

Don't get me wrong, sometimes a name can be news. Like when Microsoft revealed to us that the name for WPF/E would be "Silverlight." Or when we all learned that two of Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin's children are named Trig and Track. That last example, I suppose, provides some comfort as we learn that Microsoft is working to launch Visual Studio 2010 and .NET Framework 4.0.

"We've got a name called Visual Studio 2010 and that's about all we've got right now," said Dave Mendlen, director of developer marketing at Microsoft, in our meeting. "We're not saying much more about schedule at this point."

As reported by RDN Senior Editor Kathleen Richards, we're learning more about Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) 2010, which until now was known by the codename "Rosario." For instance, there will be three editions -- Architect, Developer and Test -- of VSTS, each tuned to a specific role. Notably the Database edition, present in VSTS 2008, has been folded into the Developer edition of VSTS 2010.

"Developers are more hybrid today than they were in the past. This need to work not just with the core source code but also with the database is becoming more and more important to them," Mendlen told RDN.

Microsoft working to provide cross-role functionality in its IDEs is hardly surprising; we were all awake for the Expression suite launch, after all. What was a bit surprising was the decision to discontinue Team Foundation Server "Rosario" support for SQL Server 2005. VSTS lead Brian Harry, in a blog post, cited the greatly improved Report Server functionality in SQL Server 2008 as the reason for the move.

What we can expect to see is more sophisticated and dynamic integration across these role-based editions of VSTS. So architects can create and manipulate dynamic models that then may be used to perform "architectural validation" of code at check-in. Or testers can capture code and system interactions during the test process -- what Microsoft calls TiVo for test -- so developers can essentially recreate and replay the issue in Visual Studio. Could it be the end of the scourge of "It works on my box"?

Obviously, this is just the first trickle in what is likely to become a steady stream of news regarding the next versions of Visual Studio and .NET Framework from Microsoft. What new features or capabilities do you most want Microsoft to concentrate on for these products? E-mail me at [email protected].

Posted by Michael Desmond on 09/30/2008

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