Microsoft sharpens .NET Core tooling, Visual Studio 2017 Release Candidate warms up

This blog post is part of our Essential Guide: .NET programming language tutorial: Making more with .NET development

Microsoft continues to ‘openly’ (in all senses) tinker (Redmond would prefer we said refine, augment, extend and finesse) with the mechanics of .NET Core and ASP.NET tooling right now — and it does so in specific reference and regard (we may reasonably suggest) ahead of the forthcoming Microsoft Visual Studio 2017 IDE release later this year.

For reference then…

Microsoft .NET Core is a cross-platform fork of the Windows-only .NET framework… it represents what many agree to be a healthy progression from the ‘monolithic clunkiness’ of purely proprietary .NET, which was hampered (or at least often slowed down) due to its many internal dependencies.

Microsoft ASP.NET is an open source web framework for building web apps and services with .NET and it is used by developers to create websites based on HTML5, CSS and JavaScript. The name ASP was originally chosen to denote Active Server Pages.

The clue is in the name

We know that Visual Studio 2017 is slated for release later in, well 2017… the clue is in the name.

In recent weeks, Microsoft has been working to fix bugs in the Visual Studio 2017 Release Candidate… specifically these have been focused on areas which include setup process functionality.

Visual Studio director of program management John Montgomery noted recently that the .NET Core and ASP.NET Core workload is no longer in preview.

“We have fixed several bugs and improved usability of .NET Core and ASP.NET Core tooling,” he wrote, on the webpages.

Team explorer

In keeping with a generally open approach here, Microsoft has also updated its Team Explorer function which is designed to enable software application developers to source, find and connect to other projects and code repositories as they expand out their current programming ventures.

Delivery plans (ALM)

Let’s also make reference to developments on the preview release of the Microsoft Delivery Plans tool — a technology base being created to help coordinate team member work efforts… so, yes, basically an Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) tool, but one that builds on existing Kanban boards and Backlogs functionality.

Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services program manager, Derrick Fu has said that when developers are planning and tracking work, it’s often necessary to see that work across teams and projects.

He reminds us that Visual Studio Team Services already provides customisable Kanban boards and Backlogs to help teams get their work done, but it’s often difficult to assemble the data from all those Boards and Backlogs into a comprehensive view.

According to Fu, “Delivery Plans changes all that. A Delivery Plan is a view of the work from multiple teams (and multiple projects) laid out on a calendar with each team’s iterations. Each row in the view represents the work from a team’s backlog, with each card corresponding to a work item — user story, feature, or epic. As you horizontally scroll through the calendar, work in future (or past) iterations comes into view.”

Wash your mouth out!

What’s happening now could be described as ‘granular control development and improvement’ happening at the same time as ‘total platform extension’ by Microsoft… and it’s all being done with the company’s open approach to open source methodologies which (for some commentators) have been more progressive than the (and this is a term that is being used) “bureaucratic community-driven processes” of traditional open source.

Microsoft does open source better than the community? Wash your mouth out now and don’t even say it… surely not, who’d a thunk it?