Wednesday, May 2, 2012

ASP.NET Test Drive

In the upcoming versions of Microsoft Web development tools, ASP.NET makes data binding more flexible while ASP.NET MVC makes creating AJAX applications and building mobile applications easier, among other goodies in both environments.

Before the end of the year, Web developers will have a new version of Visual Studio (11), ASP.NET (4.5) and ASP.NET MVC (4). Here's a look at what's new in ASP.NET, followed by new features in ASP.NET MVC. There are enough new goodies that this article will just concentrate on what's new in the presentation layer in both toolsets.

There won't be room, for instance, for any discussion of the new features available for developers who are creating their own HttpHandlers. (Note that these are beta products, and could change before official release.)

In ASP.NET 4.5, one of the first things you'll notice if you use the Web Application template project is that the content for the default.aspx page is now completely useless. I've never been a big fan of the pages added in the default Web Application template, because most developers (I suspect) will need to replace them with their own pages almost immediately. However, the new default.aspx page (see Figure 1) doesn't even pretend to be supporting an application. Instead, the page now offers advice to the developer as to what to do next -- no detail on how to do it, mind you, just good advice (such as "Configure membership"). To be fair, the default login and change password pages are probably useful (you might be able to keep them), and the default master page is relatively innocuous.

1. HTML- and Client-Side-Related Changes
2. Simplifying Binding
3. Filtering Data
4. ASP.NET MVC 4 and Single Page Applications
5. Creating Mobile Applications

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