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patterns & practices

Recommendations on how to design and develop custom applications using the Microsoft platform

Each patterns & practices offering contains a combination of written documentation and re-usable source code. Many also include a reference implementation. As the guidance is being developed it is reviewed and approved by internal Microsoft product teams and by external customers and partners. This produces a solid starting point for your application and a set of proven practices that you can follow with confidence.

Many patterns & practices offerings illustrate how to incorporate multiple Microsoft products and technologies into an overall solution.

By using patterns & practices offerings, you can accelerate the design and development of your custom applications, reduce project technical risk, and position yourself to take advantage of future Microsoft technologies.

Categories of patterns & practices offerings

patterns & practices offerings are organized in the MSDN Library into the following categories:

In addition, a collection of Retired Content is available. This content is no longer maintained but is provided as a courtesy.

To view the future release plan, see the patterns & practices Roadmap.

Feedback and Support

Questions? Comments? Suggestions? To provide feedback about this guidance, or to get help with any problems, please visit the project's community site. The message board on the community site is the preferred feedback and support channel because it allows you to share your ideas, questions, and solutions with the entire community. This content is a guidance offering, designed to be reused, customized, and extended. It is not a Microsoft product. Code-based guidance is shipped "as is" and without warranties. Customers can obtain support through Microsoft Support Services for a fee, but the code is considered user-written by Microsoft support staff.

Microsoft and the patterns & practices team make every effort to ensure that the recommendations are aligned with future Microsoft product releases, but cannot guarantee future compatibility.

Customer Connected Engineering

Every patterns & practices offering is developed in a public, CodePlex project community. Participation in these communities allows you to influence the projects, ask questions, and connect with other users.

Additional Resources

Explore the Microsoft patterns & practices Developer Center for additional information on getting started with patterns & practices, including videos. You may also want to explore the different views of the catalog available from the patterns & practices: Projects page.


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