MonoRail Faq


Following Adam Esterline’s post, some Frequently Asked Questions regarding MR, and my answers:

Q: “What kinds of projects work best with MonoRail?”:

A: all. I’d rather use SmartGridComponent (someone has added auto sorting lately) that GridView, anyday.Especially because those “reporting only” projects tend to grow business rules.

Q: “Can we use 3rd party CustomControls?”

A: Maybe (using WebFormsViewEngine, and other ‘bad’ stuff). However, you can use 3rd party DHTML Controls, which usually are much better, cooler, (and cheaper)

Q: “How do I find new developers? I’d need to teach new devs a lot of new stuff to get them started”

A: I’ve never saw a new developer being productive on day 1. Since there’s no convention in the .NET world, he’d need to learn a lot on arrival, and on every time you’d take him to a new project.Learning to use MR is surprisingly simple, and from my experience, developers learn that very fast, can easily hook to existing Controllers and Views code. I’ve been involved in a WebForms->MR move on four companies, on all cases, all of the existing developers learned it fast, enjoyed it a lot and enough to use MR on future projects, and at least in one place, it allowed the team to recruit a former PHP dev and integrate him to the team in a breeze.

As for recruitment, the idea of HiddenNetworks is genius. People who read my blog (or even better, Ayende’s blog) are probably familiar with MR, so try and grab them. Hey, don’t forget to tell the HiddenNetworks guys that I’ve sent you!

Q: “Now that Microsoft MVC is out, should I use MonoRail?”

A: Microsoft MVC is great. It means that the Big Guns are actually listening to the community. However, it is definitely not Out. I believe it would take a considerable amount of time until it’d beRTM. While MonoRail is in production quality for a long time now, it’s proven, many sites use that, and surly it’s a better choice today, as Ms.MVC is not a choice yet. You should play with MS.MVC, you should learn about it, and when the day comes, you’d be able to move from MR to Ms.MVC if you’d like, cuz the concepts are similar enough.

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