What's new in vNext with Visual Studio 2015

ASP.NET vNext has been designed to provide us with a lean and composable .NET stack for building modern cloud-based apps. ASP.NET vNext is build on .NET vNext. .NET vNext is the next major release of .NET Framework. .NET vNext will have a cloud optimized mode which will have a smaller footprint as compared to the full .NET Framework. For more details see this post.
ASP.NET vNext can be best described by highlighting the following scenarios:

Cloud-Optimized
  • ASP.NET vNext can target .NET vNext (with cloud optimized mode). This means that services such as session state and caching can be replaced based on whether the app is running in the cloud or in a traditional hosting environment, while providing a consistent API for developers.
Side by side support
  • When targeting the Cloud optimized mode in .NET vNext, ASP.NET vNext will let you deploy your own version of .NET Framework. Since now the .NET vNext Framework can be deployed with the app, each app can run different versions of .NET vNext side-by-side and upgrade separately, all on the same machine.
Enhanced developer experience
  • In ASP.NET vNext, you can now edit your code files and refresh the browser to see the changes without explicitly building your app. You can also edit your application outside of Visual Studio.
  • ASP.NET vNext projects have project.json file where all the project dependencies are stored. This makes it easier to open vNext projects outside of Visual Studio so that you can edit them using any editor such as Notepad etc. You can even edit ASP.NET vNext projects in the cloud.
A single programming model for building Web sites and services
  • MVC and Web API have been merged into a single programming model. For example, there’s now unified controller, routing and model binding concepts between them. You can now have a single controller that returns both MVC views and formatted Web API responses, on the same HTTP verb.
Modular Stack
  • ASP.NET vNext will ship as NuGet packages. NuGet packages will also be the unit of reference in your application. NuGet packages and libraries references will be treated the same so it will be easier to manage the references in your project.
  • This makes it possible for an application developer to choose what functionality they want to bring into their application. In the previous versions of ASP.NET features such as HttpContext, Session, Caching, and Membership were baked into the framework. As an app developer now if you do not need these features then you can choose not to bring it into your app.
Dependency Injection
  • Dependency Injection is built into vNext and is consistent across the stack. All of the vNext components such as MVC, Web API, SignalR, EF and Identity will use the same DI. This will allow us to provide the right set of services based on the environment that you are running in.
Configuration
  • There is a new configuration system which can read values from environment variables. This configuration provides a unified API system for accessing configuration values. You can use the same APIs to access configuration values locally or in Azure.
Open Source
  • The entire source code is already released as open source via the .NET Foundation. You can see the source at https://github.com/aspnet and follow progress on vNext in real time. You can also send pull requests and contribute to the source code.
Cross-platform support
  • We're developing vNext with cross-platform in mind, including an active collaboration with Xamarin to ensure that cloud-optimized .NET applications can run on Mac or Linux on top of the Mono runtime.
View Components
  • ASP.NET MVC 6, view components (VCs) are similar to partial views, but they are much more powerful. VCs include the same separation-of-concerns and testability benefits found between a controller and view. You can think of a VC as a mini-controller—it’s responsible for rendering a chunk rather than a whole response. You can use VCs to solve any problem that you feel is too complex with a partial, such as:
    • Dynamic navigation menus
    • Tag cloud (where it queries the database)
    • Login panel
    • Shopping cart
    • Recently published articles
    • Any other sidebar content on a typical blog
  • One use of a VC could be to create a login panel that would be displayed on every page with the following functionality:
    • If the user is not logged in, a login panel is rendered.
    • If the user is logged in, links to log out and manage his or her account are rendered.
    • If the user is in the admin role, an admin panel is rendered.
You can also create a VC that gets and renders data depending on the user's claims. You can add this VC view to the layout page and have it get and render user-specific data throughout the whole application.
A VC consists of two parts, the class (typically derived from ViewComponent) and the Razor view which calls methods in the VC class. Like the new ASP.NET controllers, a VC can be a POCO, but most users will want to take advantage of the methods and properties available by deriving from ViewComponent.

C# 6.0 adds about a dozen bite-sized new features to C#, all aimed at making your code cleaner and clearer. Instead of introducing new concepts, each feature makes a common coding pattern simpler, and removes boilerplate to let the intent of the code stand out. The video takes a quick tour through the new features: auto-properties without setters, methods and properties with expression bodies, member access that protects against null, interpolated strings and much more.

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