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Visual Studio 2012 and .NET 4.5 Release Candidates are now available for download.
Windows has made also available a Windows 8 Release Preview. Please visit the Building Windows 8 blog for the official announcement by Steven Sinofsky. You can download the Windows 8 Release Preview bits here.
The complete list of Visual Studio 2012 RC features is available on MSDN, and you can get a summary of new features from Announcing the Release Candidate (RC) of Visual Studio 2012 and .NET Framework 4.5.
You’ll notice that we’ve updated our product branding from the “11” version number to the 2012 year.
We’ve enabled upgrade from beta to RC, so if you’re using the same product edition (e.g. Professional, Ultimate, etc.), you do not need to uninstall the beta first.
The performance work done between beta and RC was extensive and covers just about every aspect of the product.
The RC includes a series of improvements to the overall user experience (UX). See Visual Studio team blog for details.
The IDE improvements in RC focus on responses to customer feedback, polishing features, and performance improvements, including Quick Find and Find-in-Files, improved Solution Explorer, improved the Quick Launch performance.
Visual Studio 2012 RC includes a new feature for the analysis of Coded UI Test playback logs, which filters and logs important information for you in a more readable format.
Architecture Tools include new facilities for understanding the structural relationships between elements of the code.
If you plan to build Metro style apps, make sure to install Visual Studio 2012 RC on a machine with the Windows 8 Release Preview. There are a number of enhancements for building Metro style apps in the RC release.
ASP.NET Web Forms has been updated to fully support the new async “await” keyword. Page events and control events can now be marked as “async” and utilize the new async support added in .NET 4.5”.
For LightSwitch projects, there are several new features that we’ve lit up in RC.
You’ll also notice some IDE improvements. For example, we now support the ability to run an app from Visual Studio in multiple browsers, through a more discoverable UI.
As with the beta, Visual Studio 2012 RC ships with a “Go Live” license. This means that you can use the product to build apps that run in production. For more information on the “Go Live” terms and how to get support if you need it, please visit the Visual Studio 2012 RC website.
Here’s some resources to help you get started with the RC:
Install and try Visual Studio 2012 RC today and seize the future of development.
MSDN subscribers can also download from MSDN Subscriber Downloads.
Bruce D. Kyle Technical Evangelist | Microsoft Corporation