Monday, August 13, 2007

VS 2008 Beta 2 Quirks Log

I finally bit the bullet and installed Visual Studio 2008 Pro Beta 2 on my development PC.  Couldn't resist anymore with all the buzz in the ASP.NET blogosphere and I thought it would be safe enough since

  • You can install it alongside VS 2005 (in theory - it is a beta)
  • With VS2008 "Multi-Targeting" you can use VS2008 to work on ("target") a ASP.NET 2.0 web application, even using ASP.NET AJAX 1.0 extensions.  Supposedly, you can still get most of the cool features of VS2008 to work while targeting .NET 2.0.

Well, the install went smooth enough for me, but I've had a heck of a time actually using any of the new features I should be able to use.  I mean, the big feature list goes: Multi-Targeting Support, Web Designer CSS intellisense support, Javascript Intellisense, Javascript Debugging, and all the LINQ stuff.  Notice I underlined the features I was personally interested in utilizing on my current project.  Multi-targeting support was the only thing I have had great success with so far.  :-(

Javascript Intellisense

I did manage to get Javascript Intellisense working the way I think it should.  I was using the AJAX Control Toolkit version of the ScriptManager control <ajaxControlToolkit:ToolkitScriptManager> and VS2008 wasn't picking up on this to give me stuff like "$get" and "Sys.Browser" in my javascript intellisense.  Temporary workaround: replace it with a standard ScriptManager.  I was only using the ToolkitScriptManager for its CombineScripts attribute, which lets you combine all the toolkit scripts to be sent to a page into one super script automagically (which I'm still not convinced is so great, not knowing much about how or if browsers cache javascript files generated by ASP.NET AJAX).

<asp:ScriptManager ID="sman" runat="server">
       <asp:ScriptReference Path="~/scripts/protos.js" />

I'll update this post if I figure anything else out along the way.  I really should be getting a paycheck from Microsoft.  :-)  But then, that is the brilliance of the community driven development that Microsoft is tapping into so heavily now - and I can't be angry at them for that, since I have benefited from that a lot more than I have contributed.

CSS Features

I got CSS intellisense almost completely working.  I was using a declaration in the System.Web.Pages section of my Web.Config to bring in the App_Theme\default information from my project, including default.css; this was not working for the CSS features.  I had to create a manual <link rel="stylesheet" /> in the <head> of my master page, and then it started working slowly but surely.  Another thing I'll have to remember on deployment.  Good thing I have this all written down somewhere.  :-) 

The one thing that doesn't work is typing class="   doesn't bring up an intellisense box like it is supposed to when a StyleSheet and classes are present for a page. Ctrl+Space doesn't help either of course.

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