Briefing: Logidex .NET Library

Logidex .NET Library
lab.msdn.microsoft.com/logiclibrary/logiclibrary.aspx

LogicLibrary
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
(412) 471-4688
www.logiclibrary.com

A couple issues ago I wrote about the free version of Logidex .NET Library available through MSDN. As you'll recall, this is a Software Development Asset (SDA) management tool running as an integrated Visual Studio .NET add-in. I just spent a few minutes getting a demonstration of their full version, and now I'll pass on the news to you.

The free MSDN version is essentially a read-only subset of the full product. With the free version, you can search for SDAs, but you can't add to the database (LogicLibrary, though, is continuing to work with MSDN to put more assets into the MSDN database; you'll see many more links to content from the Patterns & Practices group in the coming days and months). The full version lets you put your own SDAs into a library so that other developers can search for them and reuse them in their own projects.

One cool thing is that the capture process is well-integrated with Visual Studio .NET. For example, suppose you've created a new .NET class library that you want to add to the SDA library for your organization. Right-click in Solution Explorer and select Capture Project to launch the Asset Creation Wizard (assuming you have rights to add to the library; there's role-based security in place). This works you through the steps of documenting your asset and then lets you edit it in depth, still within Visual Studio .NET. Logidex makes good use of the IDE, letting you link assets by drag-and-drop, or add them to reference models the same way.

There are other capture modes as well. If you want, you can even set up a rule-driven system that looks at checkins to your source code control system and automatically pushes them into a library for reuse (though LogicLibrary recommends you have a group of people managing an approval process rather than putting everything on autopilot). There's also a browser-based interface for times when you don't have VS .NET loaded.

You can sign up for a trial of the full version through the links on the MSDN page, or arrange a 10-user pilot program for somewhere in the $30-50,000 range. Even if you're not ready to take this leap to using Logidex with your own SDAs, it's worth keeping an eye on what they're doing with MSDN. Think of this as a way to make knowledge of enterprise patterns, practices, and reusable code available to every developer in your organization.

About the Author

Mike Gunderloy has been developing software for a quarter-century now, and writing about it for nearly as long. He walked away from a .NET development career in 2006 and has been a happy Rails user ever since. Mike blogs at A Fresh Cup.

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