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ASP. NET AJAX Goes Golden

Microsoft announced Tuesday that it is shipping version 1 of its ASP.NET AJAX developers' tools, previously codenamed "Atlas."

AJAX consists of a server-side framework, a client-side JavaScript library, and a controls toolkit. It is designed to provide a set of technologies to add AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) support to ASP.NET 2.0 and Visual Studio 2005.

Version 1 was initially scheduled to ship with Visual Studio “Orcas” later this year, but the technology was deemed important enough to get it out to developers separately rather than wait, according to Microsoft statements.

AJAX began beta testing in late October after several community technology preview (CTP) releases.

“This tool provides Web developers with the essential tools to simplify building next-generation, AJAX-style Web applications through seamless integration with the .NET Framework and Microsoft platform,” a company spokesperson said in an e-mail.

According to additional statements on Microsoft’s Web site, AJAX is a free framework for quickly creating “next-generation interfaces” with reusable AJAX components, for enhancing existing Web pages using AJAX technologies, and for accessing remote services and data from a browser without writing large amounts of script.

ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX Extensions will be available under the Microsoft Reference License (MS-RL), which will enable developers to view the ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX Extensions code, thus aiding in application debugging, maintenance and interoperability, the spokesperson’s e-mail said.

The ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX toolset is available for download here.

About the Author

Stuart J. Johnston has covered technology, especially Microsoft, since February 1988 for InfoWorld, Computerworld, Information Week, and PC World, as well as for Enterprise Developer, XML & Web Services,, and .NET magazines. Contact him at stuartj1@mindspring.com.

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