Today Internet is the leading informational and entertainment source. An to be a part of it, any company must create a site and fill it with content. This is not an easy task, as a bigger site may have hundreds and thousands of pages, and thousands of lines of code, to be dynamic enough for today’s standards. This is a complex system, and it needs a lot of testing before the Site is put on the hosting server and released to the public. Fo such testing web development systems exist. These are a mix of Web server, Database server, Ftp server and all needed components to build modern site on the computer of the developer, and to be able to access it from another machine to fully test all the functions. For Linux based development systems , the standard for such suite is so AMP – Apache Web Server, MySQL database server and PHP language for creating dynamic content. It also exists for Windows environment, but as it is ported app, some problems may arise with compatibility.

WebMatrix development suite

For Windows the decision was to create your own suite, using the bundled with latter versions of Windows IIS web server, and freely available applications for the other tasks.

This is now over as Microsoft announced the release of their Web development server – the WebMatrix.

Included in it is the IIS Express 7.5 web server, a standalone version with full ASP.NET support, which will finally allow web developers working under Windows XP to work with fully compatible with the standards web server, and be sure in case of migrating to 7 for example, they’ll be able to continue development process without any problems.

Also in the bundle is SQL Server Compact Edition 4 which provides a SQL Server-compatible database which uses offline files to store its data. The database engine itself is within the web application; when that is stopped, so is the database. Just as with IIS Express, this enables development without the need of  Administrator rights on a real SQL Server. It is expected that newer versions of both apps will be backwards compatible with older ones, and no code changes will be required if you migrate to them.

Taking care of the dynamics of the site is ASP.NET “Razor” – a new templating language for ASP.NET, designed to be simpler and more streamlined than traditional ASP.NET development, a great relatively simple language for creating and working tih dynamic data and database content.

Web Matrix is great suite for developing non complex web sites, and though some problems with the compatibility exist in this version, these are expected to be corrected in the next release.