Create a full entity class diagram with a T4 template

March 26, 2008 05:42 by garrymc

I've just released another sample for the Database Explorer API, this time using the built in features of Visual Studio 2008 (should work with VS 2005 with a download of the SDK). Visual Studio 2008 comes with a built in code generator known as T4. While the built in editing experience leaves a bit to be desired the free T4 editor by Clarius Consulting goes a long way to making it workable. If you download the editor, it indicates that the time bomb expires in Jan 1, 2008; this however isn't the case as they're still working on the next release.

This sample creates a fairly decent (not perfect by any means) set of entities which you can then easily drop on to a class designer and get a good feel for how your domain model looks. It has support for all but the recursive relationship type, which could be added as the API does support this. This sample is provided to show how much you can do with both T4 and the API in only a small amout of code. I've included a screen shot from the Adventure Works sample, which as you can see supports many relationship types. The sample download includes the results run against the AdventureWorks sample database.

To download the new sample visit the projects CodePlex page.

Remember to provide as much feed back on the samples and API as you can. Enjoy!

Entity Model

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Learning DSL tools with Videos!

March 21, 2008 08:35 by garrymc

I'm in the process of getting up to speed with DSL tools, and while there's a whole lot of info out there, at the end of a long day I'd prefer to watch a video on a new subject rather than pour over the written docs, but trying to locate all the video's can be difficult, and even more if you want to view them in the right order. Well this is my effort to make things a little easier. Unless otherwise stated these videos's relate to Visual Studio 2008 edition of DSL tools, as I discover more DSL video's I'll add them to the list. If you know of a good one I've missed, leave a comment and I'll get it added. More...


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Visual Studio Extensibility (VSX) gets serious!

March 13, 2008 02:51 by garrymc

I went along to the .NET developers association in Redmond on Monday where Ken Levy demonstrated the extensibility tools of VS.NET 2008 (which also relates to VS 2005 to some extent). It seems that MS have decided to offer the VS 2008 shell license free! If you're anyone who's looking at providing third party tools (related or not to Visual Studio) and need a good IDE host, you've just saved yourself a bucket load of time. Also, it runs in two modes, integrated (merges with your instance of VS 2008) or isolated where it acts as its own (customisable too I was led to believe) IDE without the need for VS 2008. More...


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