Microsoft to Attract Novice Web Developers with WebMatrix

Dennis Faas's picture

Microsoft has unveiled a beta version of their latest software offering called 'WebMatrix'. The free tool is intended to simplify application-based development on Microsoft's ASP.Net web platform.

Among its many features, "the (WebMatrix) tool is free, provides core coding and database support, integrates with an open source web application gallery and includes support to easily publish and deploy sites and applications to web-hosting providers" according to a recent blog post written by Scott Guthrie, corporate vice president in the Microsoft Developer Division. (Source:

Web Development Made Easy

In a nutshell, those developers using WebMatrix can build web sites from scratch or download and customize applications that are available within the Microsoft Web Application Gallery. Its greatest appeal, however, is that developers of all skill levels can build and create windows-based web sites rather easily with WebMatrix.

Said Guthrie, "WebMatrix is designed to make it really easy (for users) to get started with web development. It minimizes the number of concepts someone needs to learn in order to get simple things done, and includes and integrates all of the pieces necessary to quickly build web sites."

Beta Version Available Now, Free

Microsoft is hoping that many would-be developers will give WebMatrix a try. The beta version software is currently available as a free 15MB download found at

Also included with the download are IIS Developer Express, which is a lightweight server used for building and testing ASP.Net web sites; SQL Server Compact Edition 4, which is an embedded database engine; and ASP.Net programming extensions.

Also, WebMatrix integrates with ASP.Net Razor, enabling a view engine option for ASP.Net and providing a code-focused templating syntax optimized around HTML generation. (Source:

Microsoft could not provide a date for the general availability of WebMatrix. Many are certain, however, that beta download frequency will provide a strong indication as to whether or not the new tool will be well-received once released in its completed form.

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