The Road to PDC - .NET Framework 4.0 and “Dublin”

We’re within a month of this year’s Professional Developer’s Conference, and like a lot of folks, I’ve bought my ticket and booked my hotel. We’ll unveil a lot of new technology there, but I’d like to provide an early look today at a couple things. You may have already seen some of the news this week about Visual Studio 2010. Today, we’re providing a deeper look into some of the new functionality developers can expect with the next version of the .NET Framework, now officially dubbed “.NET Framework 4.0”. We’re also announcing some important technology enhancements to the app server functionality within future versions of Windows Server, codenamed “Dublin”.

Each of these pieces is interesting by itself, but together we think they significantly simplify the effort required to build, deploy and manage composite applications. As developers are broadly adopting the use of web services to build applications (using a spectrum of both advanced WS-* services as well as lighter weight RESTful services), they are reusing services that can live disparately across their enterprises, or on the web. The best part of composite applications is that they can improve productivity and efficiency on the dev side and give more power to end users for accessing and managing data that’s most critical to the business. As a result of the growing popularity of composite apps, developers require new levels of sophistication for building distributed, long-running, and workflow-centric applications.

This is where today’s news comes in. Updates to the next versions of Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) and Windows Workflow Foundation (WF) are focused on reducing complexity for developers by providing better support for Web 2.0 technologies like REST, POX and ATOM, and increasing performance and scalability in the process. In fact, early tests show these improvements to WCF and WF are, at a minimum, enabling 10X the perf and scalability—and to think we’re still fine tuning here! Second, “Dublin” makes it easier to deploy, manage and scale these next-generation applications. For a more detailed look at improvements and enhancements in the .NET FW 4.0 components WCF and WF 4.0 as well as “Dublin”, check out this site for additional product details and a Microsoft sponsored Web cast.

We’ve had the opportunity to present an overview of these updates to some of our community members over the last couple weeks, in fact, we already have a variety of partners, including AmberPoint, Eclipsys, Frends Technology, Global 360, RedPrairie, SOA Software Inc., Epicor Software Corporation and Telerik working to take advantage of WF, WCF and “Dublin” in future technologies. Equally important, an internal ISV, Microsoft Dynamics, is also leveraging “Dublin” for future versions.

The fun doesn’t stop here. Next week, you’ll hear more from us on how “Oslo” fits into the picture…