I'm feeling a little under the weather today (have been all week - probably something I picked up on my travels) but noticed that Gary has posted a quick what's new in Expression Web 2 Beta. Embarrassingly I didn't know it was out there (I should have realised though having just been to Mix where Beta releases of other Expression products were announced). I've installed it but haven't had a chance to play with it yet.
Big changes seem to be PHP support, Silverlight 1.0 support, insertion of Flash and Windows Media files (including Flash preview in Design mode), Photoshop psd format support, ASP.NET AJAX support and support for the new ASP.NET 3.5 controls as well as improvements to FTP publishing. It now has a theme more akin to other Expression products (Blend, Design. Encoder) so it feels more like the others in the family. It's not a WPF application but it does require .NET Fx 3.5 and the Beta expires on 1/7/08.
You can download the beta here. All the Expression Product betas are available here. And I notice we now have Expression Forums where you can discuss and get assistance with the range of Expression products.
yes these features are all great but once again we are still waiting for Source Control Integration - just keep getting told it's coming at some point - this is a dealbreaker for many still :-(. I posted a comment to the Exp Web Team Blog - but still no response - http://blogs.msdn.com/xweb/archive/2008/03/05/expression-web-2-february-2008-beta.aspx#8094781
Hi Andy. Yes, I know that's an issue for many people. And I know the EW team know that too. Unfortunately I don't have any insider knowledge on when they will incorporate SCC into EW. Mike
I think there is some happy refinement in Beta 2 - and from what I am seeing, the major changes for me are not Microsoft's stated changes.. except for the Version 2 'feature' of ftp improvements. (The marketing department obviously decided to call what was a major annoyance in Version 1 into a version 2 "feature".
But besides that, what really matters is how it performs in everyday work. And I think here that Microsoft made some improvements that they simply haven't or don't want to talk about it. What I am seeing is a program that simply seems to respond quicker when I go to the various menus and dialogs. It feels 'tighter'. Maybe they used a new compiler to build the program, or maybe they just did indeed tightened up the code a bit. At any rate, I like how the program performs for everyday tasks now.
On the down side, they are still building just enough ASP.net functionality to do some of the more basic kinds of things - most of the time. Still missing is a query builder and the system that VS 2005/2008 has for instantly creating page events, e.g, on_inserted, etc.
Yes.. I know these are in VS 2008 etc but it simpply wouldn't take much more functionality in Expression Web to make life simple for many users - who must jump back and forth between programs. Yes, it can be done, but with just a tiny bit of functionality increase, Expression Web can be all it can be.