Launch: SQL 2005, Visual Studio 2005, BizTalk 2006

22 days after the big party in San Francisco, I was finally able to attend the local SQL Server 2005 / Visual Studio 2005 / BizTalk Server 2006 launch event here in Seattle.  While not exactly a party, it was a good day of marketing and demos.  And hey, the swag wasn't too bad either.  There are about 300 of these launch events going on around the globe, with an estimated 200,000 participants.  About 3,500 of those were registered for Seattle.

Since I have already seen many of the features of SQL Server 2005 at the PASS Community Summit, I decided to take the Developer Track and see what Visual Studio 2005 had to offer.  At work, we have recently been talking about implementing a new issue-tracking system, some hassles with Visual Source Safe, and looking at the new Visual Studio Team System as a possible route to go.  From what I saw today with the many different editions, using Work Items, and the new source control, I definitely think it's worth checking out.  One interesting feature they demo'd today was that you could create Work Items in an Excel Spreadsheet and have that populate back into the system.  I also found out that the Team Foundation Server is sort of a package-install.  It includes a copy of SQL Server Standard (to be used only for the TFS), and SharePoint bundled with the Team System features.  It really should be a stand-alone server, especially in a large development environment.

Of course the new features in .NET 2.0 were cool, such as Master Pages, the new GridView and DetailsView controls, and the built-in Login and Register controls for forms authentication.  Apparently I sneezed at the wrong time and missed half of the demo on the Site Map DataSource, so I'll have to research it a little more, but they used it to create a quick navigation menu that they put on the Master Page.  Oh, and don't forget the new Page_PreInit handler where you would need to put code if you were dynamically changing which Master Page that page is based on.

Plenty of new things to check out, which is why I'm glad they gave all of us SQL Server 2005 Standard Edition, Visual Studio 2005 Standard Edition, and a coupon for BizTalk Server 2006 when it actually ships (we did get the latest CTP).  There was also a copy of the Release Candidate 1 for Windows Server 2003 R2, and of course the event resources DVD.  Now, if I just had a spare month or so to dive in and really play with all this stuff, I'd be set!

posted @ Tuesday, November 29, 2005 11:28 PM

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