Mark A Wilson-Thomas

Mark A Wilson-Thomas PavAtMSFT

Niner since 2007

I am a Program Manager on the SQL Server Developer Tools Team In previous lives I have worked as a PM on the WPF and Silverlight Designer team in Visual Studio, and before that for Microsoft UK Ltd as UI development lead. Prior to Microsoft I worked for QA plc as Lead Developer on a Learning Management System project, and as a Technologist for BP plc.


  • Introducing Microsoft SQL Server Developer ​Tools,Code-​Named "Juneau": An Introduction to Doing Database Development in a Modern Way

    Hi @Brian

    1. We are not yet ready to discuss the SKU support or pricing for SQL Server Developer Tools, Code-named "Juneau". Sorry. When we are ready, the details will be available via our MSDN site

    2. You are correct to say that these tools are the natural descendents of the "Data Dude" tools in Visual Studio 2010 Premium and Ultimate editions. In our V1 offering, shipping with SQL Server "Denali", we will have a few notable missing items as enumerated on the later slides of the presentation, but many of these will be made available shortly after Visual Studio "vNext" ships.  Developers working in Visual Studio 2010 will have the option to convert their projects to work in the new project type as shown in this demo, or carry on working in the existing "Data Dude" bits.

    3. Your comment is noted; this is a frequently-requested feature and we are considering it for a future release. Are there particular aspects of your reference data workflow you would like to see support for?

    4. At present Database Unit Testing is one of the Data Dude features which will not arrive until post Visual Studio "vNext". Can you give some further detail of what you mean by "plans for Test Suites built around your UDFs and SPs" - what specific features are you looking for here? Feel free to drop me email at mwthomas at microsoft dot com, I would be happy to hear your feedback.

    5. As mentioned in the beginning of the talk, in SQL Server "Denali" ' s next CTP in the summer, all the current "BIDS" components (SSIS, SSAS, SSRS) will be shipping on top of the Visual Studio 2010 shell alongside our Database Services bits. This means you will not need to use Visual Studio 2008 to open projects of these types any longer. In terms of deeper integration between the components (e.g. refactoring across database and reports for instance), this is being considered for future releases. Please let us know your most important integration points.



    Mark Wilson-Thomas

    Program Manager, SQL Server Developer Tools, Code-named "Juneau"

  • MSDN Radio: Exploring the Visual Studio Designer for WPF and Silverlight with Mark ​Wilson-​Thomas

    Head on over to for loads more great content on the WPF and Silverlight Designer, and give us your feedback on our Forum at !


    See you all there!


  • Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 Launch: New Designer Capabilities (Silverlight TV 27)

    Hi Ben


    If you couldn't make TechEd USA in New Orleans, you can see the talk we gave on tips and tricks for using the designer there online now:



    Hope you find it interesting!



  • Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 Launch: New Designer Capabilities (Silverlight TV 27)

    Hi M Kirk


    Sorry you're having trouble getting this to work.  


    Whenever a XAML Window, Page or UserControl is loaded in design view (i.e. you can see the design pane with a preview of your design or the Intentionally Left Blank message), the Properties Window should be active if it is shown, and show the Property Marker for all properties in view for the selected piece of XAML (wherever your cursor is in the XAML file). 


    If the page in question is a resource dictionary, like the one I showed in the video, you will need to use the same trick I did in the video to get the Properties Window to "light up" - show the split view, then click on the design pane (which doesn't show by default for RDs). Do this by:


    1. Clicking on the split view button in the splitter bar which contains the Design and XAML Tabs (there are two split view buttons at the right hand end of the splitter bar, one vertical and one horizontal - vertical looks like a box with a vertical line through the middle, the horizontal the same with a horizontal line through the middle)

    2. Clicking on the Grey "Intentionally Left Blank" view shown in the Design tab


    This should "wake up" the Properties Window for the Resource Dictionary.


    Once the Properties Window is "lit up", the property marker (the little widget to the right of the label for each property and to the left of its value) should allow you to click on it and see "Apply Resource" (along with Apply Databinding, Reset Value, and Go To Value Definition) in the drop down menu.


    Click on Apply Resource in the Property Marker menu, to see the resource picker window.


    If you do this for a Style, the picker will show the available styles.


    Hope this helps!


    If not, can you say whether you are not seeing the property marker, not seeing the picker when you click Apply Resource, or not seeing your resources in the picker once it appears?





  • Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 Launch: New Designer Capabilities (Silverlight TV 27)

    Hi Yvan and thanks for the kind words!


    I "borrowed" the styles for those buttons from the Family.Show sample (which is actually a WPF sample app).


    You can find it's code on Codeplex at 


    You might also find the Blacklight controls ( , showcased at useful for this sort of look and feel.



  • Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 Launch: New Designer Capabilities (Silverlight TV 27)

    Thanks for the typo report all - yes, we spotted that during the making of the video; unfortunately it was too late for a small fit-and-finish bug to make the bar for holding up the release. We're sorry about that. We hope you think the feature is useful, and we will fix the typo in the next major release.


    Thanks a lot for all of the interest in seeing more details of the designer features.  There's already a ton of useful material on using the Visual Studio 2010 designer over on our Cider Blog at - and we are adding more there too, so do keep checking back.


    We'll also work with John and others to fill in the gaps and help you be productive - I'd love to hear from you all on the kinds of topics you'd like more detail on - the team monitors the WPF and Silverlight Designer forum, so post away over there.


    For those who are coming along to TechEd USA in a few weeks time, you may be interested to hear that myself and Mark Boulter will be giving a session there which covers a number of useful Tips and Tricks for using the designer. We'll show the material I covered in this video plus a number of other topics, and there will be time for questions. We'll also have a full feedback session. Hope to see some of you in New Orleans!


    DEV313 | Making the Most of the Microsoft Silverlight and WPF Designer in Microsoft Visual Studio 2010
    Session Type: Breakout Session
    Track: Developer Tools, Languages & Frameworks
    Speaker(s): Mark Wilson-Thomas, Mark Boulter
    Level: 300 - Advanced
    WEB08-INT | Building Rich Business Clients in Microsoft Silverlight and Windows Presentation Foundation: Feedback Session
    Session Type: Interactive Session
    Speaker(s): Mark Wilson-Thomas, Mark Boulter
  • Silverlight 4 Tools for Visual Studio 2010 Launch: New Designer Capabilities (Silverlight TV 27)

    Hi @dextroart


    The features you are seeing are part of the design-time capabilities for the WPF version of the DataGrid control which I was using at that point in the demonstration.  Unfortunately these features are not yet in the Silverlight version of that control - I will pass along your feedback to the Silverlight team to let them know you'd like to see them in future releases.




  • WPF 4 Beta 1 Designer – Looking Forward

    Update on this posting: there's a new video showing the features added to Beta 1 here:


    Check it out and let us know what you think!



  • WPF: Data-centric Applications Using the DataGrid and Ribbon Controls

    There are now updated videos about the WPF and Silverlight designer features available at  and - check them out and let us know what you think!



  • WPF 4 Beta 1 Designer - Generating Master Detail Forms

    Hi Jeni

    The same Microsoft DataGrid control which you can find in the WPF Toolkit  for use on .NET 3.5 SP1 projects, is being incorporated into .NET 4.0.

    There has been a Microsoft-built DataGrid control in Silverlight since Silverlight 2.0

    Both will be on the default Toolbox for their respective project types in Visual Studio 2010.



  • WPF 4 Beta 1 Designer - Styling Improvements

    Hi Jeni

    1. At present we have nothing to announce on localization support in the WPF and Silverlight designer

    2. Event handler hookup has now been supported in the Properties Window (on the Events tab) since Visual Studio 2008 Service Pack 1, and this will be retained in Visual Studio 2010. Is that what you meant or was it something else?

    3. No, it's not XAML only in Visual Studio 2010! See the earier video in this series for full details of the updated data binding experience - we now have a full RAD drag-and-drop creation experience, and a detailed property browser driven experience for creating and updating databinding statements. So definitley not a XAML code only experience (although if you prefer to use XAML we have also added markup extension intellisense for that scenario to make it easier)

    4. We currently do not expect to provide an item template editor in the Visual Studio 2010 release, but it is definitley possible to use the databinding picker to configure many item templates' bindings, so you don't need to type the markup extensions yourself by hand. We would like to add a visual item template editor in a future release beyond Visual Studio 2010.

    5. In Visual Studio 2010, User Controls are added automatically to the toolbox just as they are in Windows Forms designer, so you can drag-drop. It has always been possible (since Visual Studio 2008 released) to add custom controls to the toolbox using the Choose Items dialog box.

    If you need further clarifications, just ask!


  • WPF 4 Beta 1 Designer – Looking Forward

    Thanks @JerryOdom and @tkchen7 for the feedback; I'm glad you like it.

    If you get a chance to download Beta 1 of Visual Studio 2010, we'd love to hear your feedback after trying out the new features with your own WPF and Silverlight applications.

    Post your feedback at our MSDN forum .


    Mark Wilson-Thomas

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