on July 27, 2009
This book was such a surprise. I had been working in Visual Studio 2008, writing a couple Windows Forms applications, and I realized that I don't know much at all about the IDE. When I went looking on Amazon, I chose this book for some unknown reason. And, actually, it doesn't spend much time on the kinds of things for which I bought it.
But what it does--magnificently--is tell you about everything that Microsoft is using Visual Studio 2008 for. It is, therefore, an introduction (and real code) to such entities as the new language features (for both VB and C#), WPF, XAML, XML, LINQ, ADO.NET (I didn't know it was still around--it's now the foundation for Entity Framework), multi-threading, an incredible section on Active Directory programming (clearly the specialty of one or both of the boys), creating or dealing with Windows services, debugging (I had no idea there is so much there), deploying Windows applications (I used ClickOnce, myself, and want to see more about it), ASP.NET deployment, and various other things (including the Team System).
My only complaint is that many of the examples are in VB, and I don't want to deal with VB. The examples are short enough that this shouldn't be too much of an annoyance, but I wouldn't have minded access to C# versions of all code. Both boys are MVPs in Visual Basic, so their preference is not suprising even if it is also not understandable.
So, don't get this to learn what all the buttons on Visual Studio 2008 are for. Application Help should do that for us, I guess. But get it to actually dip your toes in everything going on in Microsoft development these days, and for most of this, that experience (however tiny) can be a job-saver.