UPDATE: Just to prove that this is a preview of a preview, we had a signing problem with the initial pre-built VSI download. If you tried building from source, everything should’ve been ok. We apologize for that. Even though this is meant to be a rough preview, we do want to have a high quality bar in that you should be able to try out the code. So if you run into that problem, please do download the VSI again.

It’s no secret that Microsoft can get better at naming non RTM (Release to Manufacturing) releases. We have terms like CTP, Preview, Alpha, Beta, RC (Release Candidate), and so on. On the other hand, at least Microsoft does try to move things along to RTM rather than keeping products in perpetual Beta.

With ASP.NET MVC, we also need to add yet another type of release. For now I’ve been calling this a CodePlex Source Release meaning it’s simply sharing source code that is in progress. ScottGu called it a “Preview of a Preview” in my office one day and that name stuck with me. This is really a preview of an upcoming preview. ;)

Speaking of ScottGu, he posted a detailed description of this release on his blog last night. I recommend taking a look at it because he covers most of the changes in good detail.

One aspect of this latest source release that I’m particularly happy about is that we released our unit tests. As Scott mentioned, we are using MoQ as a mock framework within our tests. Note that this is not some official endorsement of any particular mock framework. Originally we started out trying to port our tests to Rhino Mocks (which I’ve written a lot about). MoQ just happened to have a programming model that was closer to the way our internal mock framework works, so we switched over to MoQ.

I will write more about this release later. But for now, I will leave you with an updated Northwind Demo based on this release because there ain’t no party like a Northwind party.