The latest preview release of ASP.NET Dynamic Data is now available from CodePlex.  These previews give you insight into the feature set that will be available when .NET 4 is released; however, you can start using them right now with .NET 3.5 SP1!

I’ve done quite a few presentations on Dynamic Data (check out my screen cast for a taste of what it can do), so I’m looking forward to playing with the new bits.  This drop is specifically focused on integrating the coolness of field templates and validation into your existing sites, which is really where the true potential of Dynamic Data lies.

Here’s a blurb from Scott Hunter’s blog post:

When we look back and see how people view Dynamic Data we regret that people immediately think of it as scaffolding of data. This is something that it does do, and I think it does a pretty good job at it. But Dynamic Data is a lot more then that, providing a new templating mechanism called Field Templates which allow the default markup for many of our built in data controls to be more easily customized. These field templates also support validation by default (something our rich data controls did not) which can be customized by adding metadata to data objects.

In the past to enable Dynamic Data functionality in a web application the application needed to follow a couple of rules:

- It had to have a data model such as Entity Framework or Linq to SQL

- The data model had to be registered at startup in Global.asax

- The DynamicData directory had to exist in the web application

One of the new features this new preview release supports is adding field templates and validation to any ASP.NET web page without having to meet these requirements.