If you have used any of the software factories from patterns & practices and are interested in using them in Visual Studio 2010, this post is for you. Get the latest releases of the following projects:

  • Guidance Automation Extensions (GAX) 2010. Allows guidance packages to be run inside Visual Studio. Because the other factories are implemented as guidance packages, this is a required dependency. Download GAX 2010.
  • Guidance Automation Toolkit (GAT) 2010. You should install this if you intend to build your own guidance package, or want to build any of these factories from their source. Otherwise, you won't need it. Download GAT 2010.
  • Smart Client Software Factory (SCSF) 2010. Build smart client applications according to a pre-defined set of patterns and templates. Download SCSF 2010.
  • Web Client Software Factory (WCSF) 2010. Build Web applications according to a pre-defined set of patterns and templates. Download WCSF 2010.
  • Web Service Software Factory (WSSF) 2010. Build ASMX or WCF Web services using a modeling environment based on a domain specific language according to a pre-defined set of patterns and templates. Download WSSF 2010.

What's new?

Even though the goal of this work was to make sure you didn't have to wait any longer than necessary to use these in VS 2010, we were still able to fit in a number of nice changes. Many of the known bugs and work-arounds have been addressed. Here are a few of the changes that were made across all of these projects:

  • VSIX Deployment. All the new releases install and uninstall very quickly and cleanly. They also integrate with the new VS Extension Manager so you can manage them from inside Visual Studio. This also permits the 2010 versions to work side-by-side with the 2008 versions.
  • Enterprise Library 5.0. Each of the factories use EntLib and even though we didn't have time to leverage very many of the new EntLib features, we were able to update all of the references to 5.0 so you don't have to.
  • Documentation. All of the documentation, API references, QuickStarts, and Getting Started docs have been checked, updated, and tested. We also included topics on how to migrate your existing solutions to VS 2010.

Where to go for more?

patterns & practices on MSDN is a great place to start. Consider these pages home for these projects even though they also have resources on CodePlex and the Visual Studio Gallery.

If you have questions, or are interested in the source code or CHM documentation, each of these factories has a site on CodePlex.

Web Service Software Factory on CodePlex

Web Client Software Factory on CodePlex

Smart Client Software Factory on CodePlex

GAX Extensions Library on CodePlex

Discussions about GAT/GAX happen on the Guidance Automation Toolkit Forum on MSDN. If you're just not sure where to ask the question, please use the patterns & practices General Discussion Forum on MSDN. We're looking forward to hearing about your experiences.

Don, p&p team member