Microsoft Corp. has released a preview of the design tool for its upcoming Windows Presentation Foundation subsystem, also known as Avalon.
Code-named Cider, Visual Designer for WPF is set to be part of "Orcas," the next major release of Microsofts Visual Studio tool suite, which is expected to support Windows Vista development. Orcas is slated for release in 2007.
The December CTP (Community Technology Preview) build, released late last month, is the first public release of Cider, officials of the Redmond, Wash., company acknowledged.
Microsoft posted the Cider CTP code on its Web site for download as part of the Orcas WinFX Development Tools CTP release. The Orcas WinFX CTP build enables developers creating WinFX applications to use the final released version of Visual Studio 2005.
In Microsoft parlance, a CTP is an early release of a future product that is not of beta quality. WinFX is shorthand for Windows Framework, a set of managed-code, Windows-based programming interfaces that builds on top of .Net Framework 2.0.
"At this early stage, the designer is not sufficient to create WPF applications without the developer also manipulating XAML [Extensible Application Markup Language]," the release notes said.
Cider CTP also provides project-system and build-system support for WPF applications, allowing developers to build and debug software, company officials said.