Gavin Greig (ggreig) wrote,
Gavin Greig

Milestone passed

After more frustrating delays than I want to think about, today was my first day focussed on mainstream development in Visual Studio 2005. I've been pushing for a move to .NET development since before VS2002 came out three years ago, and we figured if you're going to wait that long to make the jump, better do it properly and totter on the bleeding edge.

It's not quite the first .NET development we've done, as we did a trial project last year in VS2003 in order to dip our toes in the water. We did OK with that, and acquired the Designed for Windows Mobile logo. My first task was to upgrade that project to VS2005 and see how it went.

Mostly OK. The handling of source controlled files seems to have changed a little, so that a setup project that referred to files under source control in other projects caused some confusion, resulting in the other projects becoming unbound from SourceSafe, and it took a while to detect what the problem was and rebind them. VS2005 seems to be taking a slightly stricter approach to project structure, which requires us to take an extra step to copy files from one location to another. I guess it's tidier, which in principle I'm all in favour of - it's just sometimes my idea of tidy doesn't mesh exactly with the tool.

The next obvious hurdle is that, running in a Virtual PC with VS2005, NAnt is broken. I could correct this simply, by upgrading NAnt to a version that runs on .NET 2.0, but now seems like a good time to start checking out MSBuild as an alternative. Since it's the native project file format for most of VS2005, removing the reliance on the third-party NAnt before we get too heavily committed to it has some appeal.

As we'll be making use of safe C++/CLI as well as C#, it's a shame that the C++ project files aren't MSBuild. It is a bit of a disappointment, and I understand that the C++ team may be kicking themselves a bit at missing the boat, but they seem to have done so much else right this time that it's hard to be too upset. I definitely want to see MSBuild C++ projects in Orcas though...

Hi to new non-LJ reader, JL - josh ledgard - who must be mad! However, hopefully knowing someone at Microsoft may be reading will motivate me to raise the bar on technical writing.
Tags: software development, work

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