Developing Open RIA Services Best path forward, MEF, and other questions  Viewed 53773 time(s), 12 post(s)., 8/9/2014 2:11:55 PM - by reswat

reswat
reswat 8/9/2014 2:11:56 PM

Several questions:

1) I'm very excited about this project, but there seems to be minimal activity here, which concerns me a little.  Is this project still moving forward full speed?

2) I currently have a Silverlight app that uses RIA Services to generate client-side data objects.  I suspect I will migrate that to WPF before long.  My hope is that I can use Open RIA Services to continue to generate those client-side objects the same way I've been doing it.  My question is this:  What will Microsoft recommend as the best practice for that scenario?  Is there alternative technology for generating client-side objects in WPF that they have developed, or are they planning to rely upon Open RIA Services as the best way to accomplish that goal?

3) I've read that the Open RIA Service dll's are not signed.  My understanding is that dlls must be signed to use with MEF (Microsoft Extensibility Foundation).  Do you know whether the Open RIA Services will work with MEF and dynamically loaded XAP files?

4) In my Silverlight app, I am still using Entity Framework 4.x (ObjectContext) and Microsoft RIA Services and Visual Studio 2012.  If I want to migrate to Open RIA Services now, what is the best way to migrate.  Should I upgrade the Entity Framework first, or then upgrade to Open RIA Services, or vice versa.

Thanks very much and keep up the good work.

Reese Watt

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ROBALEXCLARK
ROBALEXCLARK 8/26/2014 1:26:51 PM

I've tried to contact Colin Blair via twitter to ask if openriaservices is still ongoing but not received a reply. Hopefully it is still alive because I've migrated about 7 projects to work with it now! It already seems to be a lot more stable than the old WCF ria services so should be moved from beta to stable release IMHO

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Daniel-Svensson
Daniel-Svensson 9/9/2014 7:36:55 AM

1) I'm very excited about this project, but there seems to be minimal activity here, which concerns me a little.  Is this project still moving forward full speed?

Right now it is about making sure 4.4 (the current prerelease) is stable and that the cross-platform client works. I think colin has been making progress with the DomainController which in future versions will make it possible to use WebAPI instead of WCF for the communication making it somewhat easier to get support for "winrt/metro" applications. I am hoping a final release will appear some time this autumn. As for myself I have some ideas of how to make a win8 compatible client, but it is some way of since I have recently moved and we do not have internet in the new house yet :)

2) I currently have a Silverlight app that uses RIA Services to generate client-side data objects.  I suspect I will migrate that to WPF before long.  My hope is that I can use Open RIA Services to continue to generate those client-side objects the same way I've been doing it.  My question is this:  What will Microsoft recommend as the best practice for that scenario?  Is there alternative technology for generating client-side objects in WPF that they have developed, or are they planning to rely upon Open RIA Services as the best way to accomplish that goal?

I have not seen any recommendation from microsoft for migrating silverlight apps using ria services and I dont think you will get any specific upgrade path.
Their current focus has been webapi+html/js and continuing to develop their odata client/server so unless you plan to make a major rewrite there is no real upgrade path.

You should however be able to compile your application to use WPF and use Open Ria Services almost without any changes (change namespaces).

3) I've read that the Open RIA Service dll's are not signed.  My understanding is that dlls must be signed to use with MEF (Microsoft Extensibility Foundation).  Do you know whether the Open RIA Services will work with MEF and dynamically loaded XAP files?

We are using MEF with the unsigned dll's without any problem (but we are currently only using a single XAP).

4) In my Silverlight app, I am still using Entity Framework 4.x (ObjectContext) and Microsoft RIA Services and Visual Studio 2012.  If I want to migrate to Open RIA Services now, what is the best way to migrate.  Should I upgrade the Entity Framework first, or then upgrade to Open RIA Services, or vice versa.

Any way should do as long at you upgrade one step at a time, but I would start with switching to Open Ria Services.

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ROBALEXCLARK
ROBALEXCLARK 9/15/2014 8:19:57 AM

Hi Daniel - thanks for the update, good to know that this project is still ongoing.

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reswat
reswat 9/15/2014 3:08:36 PM

Daniel,

Thanks for the update.  That is encouraging.

FYI, for anybody interested, in regards to an upgrade path for Silverlight applications, Microsoft has given guidance in the body and the appendix of this publication:

http://www.microsoft.com/net/nettechnologyguidance

Essentially, the upgrade path is either 1) migrate to WPF or 2) migrate to KnockoutJS, or something similar.

In regards to signing the assemblies, I recently attempted to upgrade my application.  I tried before I read your post, so I first upgraded to Entity Framework 6.x and then tried to upgrade to OpenRIAServices.  In fact, I believe that was my only option, since I am currently using EF 5.  (In the migration instructions for OpenRIAServices, it says that those using EF 5 must first upgrade to EF 6)

I ultimately had to give up the migration attempt due to compile errors.  I can't remember the specific error, but I do know that it was related to the fact that the OpenRIAServices assemblies were not signed.  I tried to sign them myself using instructions I found on the web, but that didn't work either.  I do know that there is another conversation on this blog regarding problems with unsigned assemblies.  I would like to move forward with the transition to OpenRIAServices, but could not get it to work.

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groovejumper
groovejumper 9/15/2014 11:12:27 PM

We also are hoping for Signed Assemblies.  We use a 3rd party control suite (Telerik) - a number of users (including us) have pushed for a version of their suite that is compatible with OpenRiaServices, apparently this project has been approved.

However, Signed Assemblies are required for this - I'm not sure of the details but we're going to have a hard time moving forward in a number of areas without this.

Would like to strongly encourage some sort of move forward in this area, we've been waiting a long time to migrate to OpenRiaServices and this appears to be the last stumbling block for us.

Thanks!

g.

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Daniel-Svensson
Daniel-Svensson 9/21/2014 11:11:56 AM

Regarding signed  assemblies it is definitely one of the features I hope will make it into 4.4 and if you think do too I recommend you to vote for it (you don't Ned to comment just to vote) at https://openriaservices.codeplex.com/workitem/44

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ColinBlair
ColinBlair 10/3/2014 3:19:18 PM

The signed assemblies have been in beta for a few days. There were a few teething problems early on with the NuGet package not updating the project file correctly but they seem to be working now. I would like some more testing from users before I take the beta label off of them so please let me know.

One important note, I got the main solution to compile both the non-signed and signed versions of the assemblies, but the non-signed assemblies are the main "official" release and the signed versions are an "alternate" release. If you don't need the signed versions, don't use them. The reason I am making that distinction is that future branch 5/6 versions of Open RIA Services will be based on ASP.NET vNext and so I will not be able to sign those. For anyone who hasn't heard, ASP.NET vNext will not be signed.

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groovejumper
groovejumper 10/3/2014 4:50:10 PM

Does this mean that, as a Silverlight user with a need for signed assemblies, that the 4.x versions will be the final versions available for me to use?

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ColinBlair
ColinBlair 10/4/2014 11:36:29 AM

It means that the server side would not be signed, I would still be able to sign the Silverlight assemblies.

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