Webmatrix Presentation: Notes and links

First of all, thank you to all who attended my South Sound .NET UG presentation on the Webmatrix webstack.  I had a good time and it seemed like you all did too.

Here are some notes and the resource links from the presentation.

WebMatrix upsides

•Simple to use, can create complex sites
•Wide variety of partners offer templates and helpers
•Quick prototype can be converted to full VS
•SQL Compact CE can be migrated
•Free, quick install, comes bundled for end-to-end experience
Some downsides
•No unit testing support
•No debugging through WebMatrix
•No Razor intellisense (yet)

The registry trick:

When you launch Visual Studio from within WebMatrix, it will use the last installed instance of Visual Studio.  To make sure it’s targeting the one you want to use, change the registry keys that denote CurVer of Visual Studio.  This example sets the CurVer to Visual Studio 2010:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTVisualStudio.DTECurVer = VisualStudio.DTE.10.0
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTVisualStudio.DTECLSID = {656D8328-93F5-41a7-A48C-B42858161F25}

That CLSID value is found in the key for each version, so you can look for the VisualStudio.DTE key for that version, i.e., VisualStudio.dte.9.0 contains the CLSID for Visual Studio 2008.

IIS Express

What is it?

•Lightweight and easy to install
•Admin account  not required
•Full web-server feature set – including SSL, URL Rewrite, Media Support, and all other IIS 7.x modules
•Supports and enables the same extensibility model and web.config file settings that IIS 7.x support
•Install side-by-side with the full IIS web server, andthe ASP.NET Development Server (Cassini)
•Works on Windows XP and higher operating systems
•Works with ASP.NET and PHP applications

How to get it

•Comes with WebMatrix download
•Can also download from MS Download Center
•Or directly from Web Platform Installer
•From the IIS site


•Free, embedded, file-based database engine.
•Use with existing .NET based APIs:  ADO.NET, EF, Nhibernate, etc.
•Database installation not required, no server software needed
•Easy deployment

Use with WebMatrix or Visual Studio 2010

Getting the cool free stuff we talked about in the presentation:

WebMatrix  (includes IIS Express, SQL CE):    http://www.microsoft.com/web/

IIS Express: http://learn.iis.net/page.aspx/860/iis-express/

SQL Compact Edition:


MS Download Center


Web Platform Installer


Resources for further exploration:

http://www.microsoft.com/web/ à check out ‘Getting Started’ for how to’s, walk throughs, etc.

MS ASP.NET home page, for all things Web (ASP.NET, MVC, WebMatrix)


ScottGu’s blog: http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/default.aspx  à tons of articles on WebMatrix, Razor, IIS Express, Compact CE and more

IIS Homepage: http://www.iis.net/overview  à tons of info on web dev topics, check the forums for a wide range of info on IIS, SQL CE and WebMatrix

Nuget Gallery: http://nuget.org/

Scott Hanselman’s Computer Zen: http://www.hanselman.com/blog  à tons of stuff about web development, latest tools from Microsoft and elsewhere

Phil Haack’s Razor Syntax Guide: http://haacked.com/archive/2011/01/06/razor-syntax-quick-reference.aspx

StackOverflow:  http://www.stackoverflow.com à where interesting questions are asked and answered (hopefully)