Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Enterprise Library 6 is out!

Enterprise Library provides an excellent way to keep the cross-cutting concerns outside your main application code. Microsoft Pattern & Practices team released new version of Enterprise Library last week. This was released on 25th April and this is Version 6 of the library. Full version of the library and source code can be downloaded from Microsoft's Download Center.

The documentation can be downloaded directly form Pattern & Practices team's codeplex page. The documentation is still in preview version and is not updated on MSDN. Still this can be downloaded from the main page. In addition to the Enterprise Library documentation, it also includes the migration guide for migrating applications from Enterprise Library 5. You can also find the reference PDF for Unity Application Block version 3 which is provided as part of the new version of Enterprise Library.

List of Application Blocks in Enterprise Library 6
The library seems to be released with exciting new features in existing application block. It includes a new application block with the name Semantic Logging Application Block. Transient Fault Handling application Block seems to have been added from Azure Integration Pack for Enterprise Library 5. Enterprise Library 6 includes the following application blocks.
  1. Data Access Application Block
  2. Exception Handling Application Block
  3. Logging Application Block
  4. Policy Injection Application Block
  5. Semantic Logging Application Block
  6. Transient Fault Handling Application Block
  7. Unity Application Block
  8. Validation Application Block
As discussed above, Semantic Application Block is the newest in the list. This is supposed to be built on top of EventSource provided in .net framework 4.5 for structured logging. EventSource provides structured logging support for ETW events. Semantic Application Block is supposed to add support structured logging by specializing EventSource, where the logs can be sinked to Azure or SQL Server database.

There are other application blocks which used to be in Enterprise Library 5 and haven't been migrated over to EntLib6. They include the following:
  1. Cryptography Application Block
  2. Caching Application Block
  3. Validation Application Block
Back in 2010, we did discuss about how we can use Validation Application Block in an MVVM based application.

Unity 3.0
The release also includes a new version of unity application block. This is version 3 of Unity. As we know Unity provides the support of Dependency Injection for .net applications. This is a container based approach to Inversion of Control. Unity 3 extends Dependency Injection Windows store Apps and deeper integration with ASP.net MVC and Web API.

Requirements for Enterprise Library 6
Enterprise Library 6 only works with .net framework 4.5 and .net for Windows Store Apps (for Unity and Transient fault handling application block. It cannot be used side by side with existing Enterprise Library 5 binaries. If you are still on .net framework 4.0, you will need to make a decision about migrating to .net framework 4.5 first before moving to the new version of the enterprise library.

Using Enterprise Library Application Blocks
You can download the list of the binaries from the link provided in download section to use enterprise library's application blocks in your code. Pattern & Practices team suggests using Nuget for this purpose. For ease of developers, Pattern & Practices team has provided these application blocks in the form of Nuget packages. These Nuget packages can be used individually as per the requirement. Just add the appropriate package to your project using Nuget

Still To Come
This is the view of the release from top. There are other minor improvements and updates which require more detailed discussions. I am planning a few posts about the updates in Enterprise Library 6. You might find me blogging about them next month. You can find release notes here.

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