Pick Up the Scissors and Run

I've had VS.NET 2005 and SQL Server 2005 installed for a couple of days now. Thanks to the MSDN subscription site. So far, I'm very impressed. The question remains how and when do we make the move. I say, run with the scissors.

The cutting edge, if you can define this as cutting edge, is not quite as sharp as one might think given we've been through beta one and two and the community technology previews (CTP). But for those of you who did install the betas (and by what I've read and heard there are thousands of you), be warned! The SQL Server install is a pain if it detects any whiff of beta. I was finally successful after uninstalling even the previous .NET frameworks.

That said, I'm still recommending running with the scissors. Okay, well, walk quickly anyway. Plan to migrate as quickly as possible without totally disrupting your current development paths. Here's my list of reasons to do it. I'm sure there's many more, but it's a start.


  • Bulk updates: 1,000,000 row insert for 1.1: 30 minutes; for 2.0: 45 seconds
  • Dataset binary serialization in remoting: faster DS over the wire (up to 6 times smaller)
  • DataTable now supports XML read, write, schema, merge, load
  • DataView.ToTable method allows creation of a new DataTable from a view

C# 2.0

  • Generics: generic class later cast to a specific type. Collections are the best example: a list of some type: List<someType>
  • Anonymous methods: allows code to be passed as a parameter rather than requiring a delegate
  • Partial classes: allows a class to be defined and worked on in two or more files


  • AJAX: direct support for asynchronous javascript calls to the server with javascript generation automated and easy event handling in the code-behind code of the page.
  • Master pages: allows visual inheritance or a base class page
  • DataSource & ObjectDataSource allow easier binding to data aware controls

Visual Studio .NET 2005

  • Click-Once deployment of smart client
  • Editor: improved color coding and intellisense
  • Debugger will suggest potential problem areas
  • Warnings suggesting specific replacements for code that uses deprecated or obsolete framework objects
  • Debugger allows data visualization: view a dataset in a grid while debugging
  • Conversion of previous VS.NET projects easy, automated, informative reports

SQL Server 2005

  • PIVOT/UNPIVOT allows rows and column rotation
  • APPLY allows use of a UDF in a FROM clause to create a result set with calculated columns
  • TRY/CATCH allows more granular exception handling
  • CTE (Common Table Expressions) allow the creation of a recursive query to produce a hierarchical resultset
  • CLR integration allows stored procedures to be written in C#