Allow Me To Share My Toolset Choices for Developing On .NET

There was a question in a tech facebook group I co-manage about what tools you’d use if starting a new project today.


I don’t know for sure. It depends -of course- is the expected answer. For example, there’s some idea I had I mind I considered using MongoDB or CouchDB for, while still using .NET, and then I wasn’t sure if I go extra mile in DB I’d go for Node or Rails as well or would prefer .NET for my personal productivity. I also often use Node/Bower when checking libraries with many dependencies.

So, for this question, I thought what tools I might use in a company project. Thinking back, I found that most tools I use now are good enough for what they do. So, I thought I’d list these.

These tools are my personal experience though. While some of them are widely adopted in Readify, some others may have been specific to some clients or Readify teams I worked with. Every team is free to choose the tools that work best for them and make it easier to deliver high quality deliverables in sensible time, so, even if you are at Readify, your mileage may vary…

The Tools

Server Side Web


  • SQL Server (or SQL Azure, although I don’t like SQL Azure, because it’s not compatible with some scripts generated from SSMS, which I sometimes use to generate migration scripts)

  • DbUp for DB migrations (there are some other nice options now)

  • Special SQL views + Web API OData + MS Excel for reporting

Client Side Web

  • Angular.JS on the client when I have the choice, Knockout.JS and jQuery UI (being deprecated now) at some big client I keep going back to every few gigs

  • LESS for CSS, or SASS (SCSS) when the CSS is handled by one of our favourite design agencies

  • Chrome devtools for web debugging (obviously), unless it’s IE issue of course.


  • Phonegap (most just the open source part of it, Cordova) and Ratchet CSS framework (considering alternatives, like TopCoat) for mobile development, with Angular.JS

  • Considering Xamarin as their work seems to be VERY cool, and I recently get access to their stuff via my company (OT: Also considering Neo4j DB for similar reasons).

IDEs and Text Editors



Internal Communication

  • Several kinds of wikis used by different clients, often with OneNote

  • HipChat for team communication, sometimes Skype and/or Lync as well

  • AnswerHub (Stackoverflow clone) for internal questions forum where I can safely quote client sensitive information in my question

  • Yammer for internal company social network

How about you?

What tools do you you use when developing?

Let me know in the comments, via email, or on twitter!

Just Noticed GitHub DOES Support SubVersion/SVN [Not only Git]

The SVN News

Today I was hanging around GitHub when realized a relatively old news, dated to April 1, 2010, saying they do support SVN.

Announcing SVN Support

Yes, it’s April Fools day. Very funny date to announce anything serious as they admit themselves in an update to the news post, but it DOES work.

Use the same Git clone HTTP URL, just add “svn.” between “http://” and “”:[user]/[repository]

It even allows you to write changes back to the repository, as announced in the more recent news post, dated May 4, 2010, check it out for the “cavets” (known issues):

Subversion Write Support

That uses the same URL but with HTTPS:[user]/[repository]

This should work best when you want to get some project for read-only access or very few commits from your side, when this project has a very long history you are not really interested in. Of course you wouldn’t want to use that if you are leading (or a main committer to) a project hosted at GitHub.

Background, Me and Git (Safe To Skip)

I have been playing with Distributed Version Control Systems (D-VCS) lately, not because it’s fun (it is), but mainly because many open source libraries I’m a fan of have converted from SVN to Git, most of them hosted at GitHub.

Although I feel geeky when dealing with Git (nice feeling), having to deal with its tooling was a bit unpleasant (I’m not against Console, but given there are alternatives with good GUI in other VCS, it felt bad), and having to get entire version history not last updates only for some projects with very big history was quite slow and bandwidth hungry thing.

I discovered the “-depth” switch in git clone command which allows getting last updates by checking TortoiseGit UI, but it still doesn’t play nice with pulling more recent changes after this. Best way is to drop what you have and re-clone the entire working copy.  This is bad not only for speed but also it removes some changes I usually need to do (and keep, those I mention at the end of the post).

Also tried TortoiseHg git and SVN modules thinking ti’s a better tooling, but I found that it doesn’t play nice with them also (the details aren’t at the top of my head right now).

What I’m Using It For

So, this news is very nice for me. That allows me to do the exact thing I needed. Get last version, modify local changes I’m not interested in merging with main project (like using key file with some VS project, or upgrading entire VS Solution version from VS2008 to VS2010, etc), update later when some remote changes happen, and get those merged with my stuff.

The clear example for this is NHibernate (hosted on SVN but I hear in uNHAddin mailing list there are early plans to convert to Mercurial). It allows me to do exactly that, and I was willing to do the same with FluentNHibenrate (hosted at GitHub). Now I can, YAY :)

Using Different VCS Clients?

To make it clear, this is not to get rid of Git completely, I think I need to get involved in it more. I used to like Mercurial more, but seems with time I’m getting into this git thing.

It’s nice there are many VCSes to choose from in general, but not nice that you cannot choose only one for yourself. Seriously hate the fact that I have to use different VCS clients at the same time, especially when that depends on what VCS the project uses, not what I happen to prefer.

Now CodePkex, GoogleCode, GitHub support SVN. That’s good for me. Will try to stay there as long as possible. TortoiseHg supports Git/SVN also via plugins, but I won’t stick to that as it’s not as great tooling as I need and extensions don’t always work right for different tasks.