Visual Studio 2008 SP1 is icing, and more cake

Going far beyond bug fixes, Service Pack 1 to Visual Studio 2008 and .Net Framework 3.5 adds many important new features

Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 (VS08) Service Pack 1 (SP1) took eight months to arrive. Considering the capabilities that have been added, eight months might not seem so long. In some ways, SP1 feels like the completion of what Visual Studio 2008 was supposed to be. It's certainly not just the collection of bug fixes that you'd expect from the term "service pack."

As I said in my original review of Visual Studio 2008 in January, VS08 is the premier IDE for developing applications with the Microsoft .Net Framework and at least a contender for the best Windows-hosted C/C++ IDE. As I went on to quibble, the product as released in December lacked the much-anticipated ADO.Net Entity Framework and LINQ to Entities, and broke some JavaScript and VBScript functionality from previous versions.

It's about the data

SP1 finally includes the ADO.Net Entity Framework (EF), the Entity Data Model (EDM), and LINQ to Entities. EDM is a full-blown language-independent, database-independent entity-relationship model. It is supported by an Entity SQL language and is especially useful for data-centric line-of-business applications. LINQ to Entities integrates queries against Entities into C# and Visual Basic, which may obviate the need to learn the subtleties of Entity SQL for many programmers.

Note that Entity SQL is significantly different from the Transact-SQL query language used in Microsoft SQL Server. Speaking of SQL Server, SP1 adds full support for SQL Server 2008 to Visual Studio 2008, hot on the heels of the release of SQL Server 2008.

Better scripting

I'm happy to say that the VS08 HTML editor is no longer broken for Classic ASP. The HTML editor is still not smart enough to resolve server-side includes, however.

You'll find vastly improved IntelliSense and code formatting for JavaScript in SP1, even for third-party libraries, at least if you structure your files the way VS08 expects. If you mess up the structure enough to confuse the JavaScript parser, the worst that now happens is that the VS08 IntelliSense and code formatting won't work; syntax coloring usually continues to work, and the editor stays out of your way instead of trying to "help" you with misguided changes.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martin Heller

InfoWorld
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?