Some thoughts about WebMatrix and Visual Studio 2012 vs 2013 RRS feed

  • Question

  • User379720387 posted

    I have been using WebMatrix for almost 3 years now, in active development. Without WebMatrix I would not have gotten this far.

    My most recent configuration was WebMatrix on one screen, for the db. And Visual Studio 2013 on another for the debugger and intellisense. Problem with this configuration was that VS 2013 does not do much with a SQL CE database. I was therefore never in a position to move away from WebMatrix, as Microsoft indicates I should.

    A new (to me) computer resulted in a reconsideration of the situation, and on a whim I installed VS2012 Ultimate because I had read somewhere that it is the last version that still supports SQL CE.

    First of all VS2012 is an enormous eyesore, as you will be looking at mostly white screens. This was remediated by this: https://visualstudiogallery.msdn.microsoft.com/366ad100-0003-4c9a-81a8-337d4e7ace05

    But I am definitely impressed with the db functionality for SQL CE databases. Kind of difficult to explain but here it goes.

    Open up server explorer and connect to your .sdf database.

    Right click on the db name and select query,

    Now a tab opens up with four panes, and it will ask you which table, then ....

    first pane - graphical representation of the table

    second pane - not sure how to describe it because there is nothing like this in WebMatrix. There is a row for each table row, then the columns allow you to enter an alias, sort type, filter and so on. When you do that, watch what happens in the third pane!

    third pane - here the query is assembled from the choices you made in the first two panes

    fourth pane - the query results

    Now right click in the empty space in the first pane. Select Add Table. See how the query is updated with a JOIN (provided you had previously established the relationship between the two)?

    VS2012 is a significant improvement over WebMatrix in how it allows you to be more efficient with queries.

    Bye bye VS2013 I will hardly miss you.

    Tuesday, March 24, 2015 12:15 PM

All replies

  • User-1980594115 posted

    Thanks for sharing. What you described is less frustrating in trying to use SQL CE.  I also have been using VS 2013 and will take a look into VS 2012.

    Wednesday, March 25, 2015 10:45 AM
  • User-166373564 posted

    Hi wavemaster,

    Thank you for raising this issue to us through the forums. We definitely hear your frustration on this issue. We actively monitor forum conversations in an effort to receive feedback that helps us continually improve our products, so we have logged this feedback accordingly.

    In addition, the Uservoice site is for suggestions and ideas, what you would like to see in future versions of the Visual Studio suite of products, you can submit it to Visual Studio UserVoice site, Visual Studio team development team look into the issue according to the proof customers provide. Thanks for your understanding.

    Best regards,


    Monday, March 30, 2015 1:53 AM
  • User379720387 posted

    SQL CE is not supported in 2013 and not in ASP.next either (so I am told).

    Many before me have complained about this.  Seems like Microsoft has decided not to listen.

    Maybe Microsoft personnel needs to start writing tutorials to show how people can migrate their existing apps based on Microsoft technologies now abandoned, to the new Microsoft technologies that may or may not be abandoned at some point in the future.

    Monday, March 30, 2015 1:32 PM