Old news to you, maybe, but news to me. And good news if you are just a little bit tired of the usual drawbacks of AOP using subclassing or proxies. In a previous post I discussed these problems with respect to the Policy Injection App Block in Enterprise Library 3.
Check out the PostSharp project. It uses MSIL post compilation. That means that after the c# compiler has finished compiling you code, PostSharp compiles it again to inject your interceptors. Very interesting in its own right.
One of the interesting spin-offs of PostSharp is called PostSharp4EntLib and is part of the EntlibContrib project. It makes it easier to have your Enterprise Library policies injected into your entities. Not runtime, but compile time. And you don’t even need to inherit from MarshalByRefObject and wrap all instantiations in ugly calls to abstract factories anymore. PostSharp takes care of this for you.
Only one hurdle so far: It will not recognize Danish characters in my identifiers. This minor setback can’t hurt me though. Even though it’s not reached production level stability, I’m going to try it out soon in an enterprise project.
Stay tuned for further details.
6 Responses to 'Fresh AOP meat on the dish'
Thomas Jespersen said,
ON AUGUST 29TH, 2007 AT 5:36 PM
I wonder what the debugging experience is like!
azza gregg said,
ON SEPTEMBER 18TH, 2007 AT 9:54 AM
I’ve just started using it for the last week to implement logging throughout a multi-tiered asp.net 2.0 web application and I’ve found it easier to implement than the Microsoft Policy Injection Block.
As for Thomas’ comment, debugging is as normal however it looks like the post-compilation prevents you from being able to use the edit&continue VS2005 feature.
I’m almost finished, which unfortunately means I might have to roll-back because lost of posts out there mention it being not ready for production yet (doh!!!).
Looking forward to the next release, huge thanks to Gael Fraiteur!!
ON SEPTEMBER 18TH, 2007 AT 7:58 PM
In the meantime I’ve had some experience with debugging using VS2008. It’s better than all other AOP frameworks I’ve encountered, but still not 100%. Debug symbols are moved along with the code, so in 8 out of 10 exceptions will take the debugger to the right place in code.
But the last 2 tenths it will just give you a TargetInvocationException. Especially RuntimeInitialize() calls and static constructors are difficult.
Azza, bad news about edit and continue. I guess I’ve gotten used to not having that — it’s not working in VS2008
Could you post the urls for the posts that doubt PostSharp quality, please? I’m close to going production with it… Thanks!
azza gregg said,
ON SEPTEMBER 20TH, 2007 AT 8:51 AM
I’ve finished a first round of testing the Laos and Public namespaces and haven’t had any further issues which may mean this’ll go to test and production with the next release.
Sure you get those TargetInvocationExceptions, I was thinking about using the OnMethodBoundaryAspect to capture the OnException event and see if there’s more detail to be found…
My hesitation comes as a matter of caution when using something that still has the words ‘Beta’. I haven’t found anyone out there mentioning production implementation but did find the following link discouraging it;
ON SEPTEMBER 20TH, 2007 AT 3:47 PM
Azza, the blog post you refer to is from February when PostSharp was in alpha. It’s in beta3 now.
What’s more important than the official state (CTP, alpha, beta etc) is Gael’s willingness to provide support very quickly. And right now, he’s very dedicated to the project.
I’m planning to (very cautiously) take PostSharp into production months.
azza gregg said,
ON SEPTEMBER 24TH, 2007 AT 4:18 AM
Cheers Soren, I’m starting to feel a lot more confortable with this great peiece of software.
Regarding the TargetInvocationException, I’ve put a simple loop into the catch block that compares the InnerException to null and assigns to an exception variable. When the code breaks out of the loop we now have the actual Exception that was originally thrown.