Thursday, September 22, 2011

Published today: Microsoft Visual Studio LightSwitch Business Application Development

This book was published today (Sept 21, 2011).

Visual Studio LightSwitch or simply LightSwitch is the latest addition to Microsoft's VS Suite. I believe this is game changing software when it comes to data-centric applications for the Desktop, or the web, or for the Microsoft Cloud Platform.

I started writing this book during the Beta 1 period and finished soon after the RTM. Before RTM there was a Beta 2 which was almost a finished product.  Similar to my other books, each chapter builds upon the previous, and by the time you finish, I believe you will have learnt a lot about LightSwitch. Instead of taking a real business application and explain away how LightSwitch implements the application - a top-down approach, I have taken a bottom-up approach building bit by bit from scratch. Another reason for this approach was the fact that there are already very many online resources which utilize the top-down approach.

Of course, similar to my other books, this book is also replete with screen shots, and you can find codes both in VB and C# for most of the chapters. The projects created to describe the contents of the chapters can be downloaded from Packt site.
Here is the table of contents:
  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: Getting Started with Microsoft LightSwitch
  • Chapter 2: Microsoft LightSwitch IDE and Architecture
  • Chapter 3: Accessing Data from a VSLS Application
  • Chapter 4: Screens in VSLS application
  • Chapter 5: Working with Entities
  • Chapter 6: Querying and Filtering Data
  • Chapter 7: Writing Code in Microsoft LightSwitch
  • Chapter 8: Authentication and Authorization in Microsoft LightSwitch
  • Chapter 9: Deploying LightSwitch Applications
  • Chapter 10: Troubleshooting, Debugging, Custom Controls, and Extensions
  • Index
A sample chapter is available here.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Would you miss this great opportunity of a great buy?

Packt has published a number of extremely useful and focused books, both Open Source and Microsoft besides others. You can get a list of over 90 Microsoft books here.

In fact I authored four of them:

This month Packt is giving great discounts on Microsoft books, an opportunity you should not miss. Here is a screen shot of Packt's ad on their site here.

Good luck

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

You want to become a CloudMASTER or even a CloudGuru?

You can visit NJIT  which offers these courses after which you get the certificates. Well even universities are getting on the band wagon. We will have to look at the faculty which teaches these courses.

I suppose martial arts schools will start their CloudBelt program for the Cloud Ninjas.

Another alternative, quite simple, if you know already a little bit of SQL and Visual Studio is to read these books from Packt which will make you as good a CloudSomething as any other alternative paths.

Of course you can read other books as well and you can find them on amazon.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Visual Studio 2010 does support LocalDB provided...

Visual Studio 2010 does support  LocalDB provided the new SQL Server Developer Tool (SSDT) is installed. After installing SSDT you need to create a SQL Server Database project  as shown.

The SQL Server Database that is used within the project is the LocalDB. Here you can call up the table designer using Add Table as shown.

This document was edited to remove the error which gave the impression that this is a C# project. It is actually a SQL Server project.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Visual Studio 2010 does not support Data designer for LocalDB

LocalDB is a feature of Denali CTP3 SQL Server Express. While you can connect to LocalDB, a file based database file, the designer data designer which is invoked from Data | Add New shown below does not support creating objects in SQL Server versions beyond SQL Server 2008 within the VS 2010.

It is interesting however; one can create database objects in SQL Server Express 2011 (presently Denali CTP3 Express) as seen in this image.

One can conclude therefore that VS 2010 SP1 needs some kind of upgrade before it can provide UI support for designing database objects in LocalDB.


The LocalDB has to be created directly in the application that uses the application instance of this database and not via the the connection in the Server Explorer.

As the next post shows - you can use the table designer UI provided you have installed 'Juneau'

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

My book on Microsoft LightSwitch will be released soon

Microsoft LightSwitch holds great promise in application development. A great deal of effort has gone into this, crystallizing the many diverse Microsoft technologies such as SilverLight, Microsoft .NET Frame work, the Entity Model, the WCF RIA Services, LINQ to name only a few.

It is a quick and easy way to develop applications without writing a line of code in most cases. Once developed, the application can be deployed to desktop, web and Microsoft Azure Cloud platform under the expert guidance of well-designed deployment wizards. It has the same robust, ironclad security model based on ideas of securing ASP.Net applications.

 The extensibility frame work gives developers and third parties to develop extensions which enormously enhance the usability of this software in a myriad of ways. Extensibility offers and extends the idea of 'not writing a line of code' even more as developers write extensions to support this premise thus giving the users a painless way of developing applications.
I started writing this book during Beta 1 and completed it around March-April of 2011. It became apparent that I had to rewrite the book as Beta 2 appeared immediately in May. It took another three months of rewriting as Beta 2 was considerably different and what was written using Beta 1 would have been of little use. And as the Beta 2 came to an end and was released (Microsoft LightSwitch 2011), I was relieved to find that the projects built using Beta 2 compiled and worked without any problem in the release version. There were a few small changes that I incorporated in an appendix. All in all this was a difficult writing assignment as I had also some personal problems that needed urgent attention.

I will write more about the book as soon as it is released. I would like to thank Packt publishing in giving me this opportunity and generous help. I take this opportunity to thank  Microsoft, Microsoft employees and the members of the Visual Studio LightSwitch forums who educated me in more ways than one.
Read all my LightSwitch related posts here:

Read about LightSwitch Extensions here:   

Friday, September 02, 2011

Another SQL Express on the horizon

It is Denali CTP3 Express from none other than Microsoft. A lightweight edition of Denali CTP3 which will eventually be released as SQL Server 2011 Express (I guess) like the other express editions of this great software. This is a 'made for web developers and developers" edition and make sure you download and enjoy working with it.
From the MSDN link here, you can download Denali CTP3 Express edition which takes you to where you can make your choices as to version and language. Of course you need to register. The options are the same and one of the choices includes the tools as well.

The top features from the MSDN site are copied over here:

• Same database engine as other versions of SQL Server.
• Supports 10 GB of storage per database.
• Backup and restore with ease.
• Compatible with all editions of SQL Server and SQL Azure.
• Designed to work with Visual Studio and ASP.NET.
• Available with a graphical management tool.
• Offers reporting capabilities, full-text search, and spatial support.
What else do you need to test drive exccept the will? Protection Status