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Distributing Policy, Prototypes, and Custom Help

Visual Studio .NET 2003

After you choose and customize an Enterprise Template for your developers to use, the next step is to distribute it to the development team. After this goal is fulfilled, the following things are possible:

  • Developers can instantiate the project (or set of projects). They do this only once, at the start of the project, after they have obtained local copies of the project's prototype files and write permissions for those files.
  • Developers can obtain the project's policy file. This happens not only at the start of the project, but may be repeated over the course of development work, as you update policy settings.
  • Custom Help can be displayed to developers. Similarly to the situation with policy, this happens both at the start of and throughout the project, as you add, edit, or delete custom Help.

You have several choices on how to share the project prototypes, policy files, and custom help pages. The following sections describe the various approaches you can use to manage and distribute these files.

Security Note   You might be at risk for an information-disclosure security breach if your template's policy file contains sensitive information. If you are sharing policy (.tdl) files or Enterprise Template project (.etp) files outside of your team, you are at risk for information disclosure. Specifically, you risk disclosing sensitive information such as database connection strings and unsafe paths. To eliminate these risks, before distributing any policy or .etp files, open them in a text editor and inspect them. They should not contain database connection strings nor paths to users' private folders. Secure the files that constitute your team's Enterprise Templates. For more information, see Securing Against Information Disclosure Risks and Securing Customized Template Files.

In This Section

Distribution Choices
Describes several methods for distributing your Enterprise Template to developers for use in creating applications.
Enterprise Template Projects and the ETP Schema
Contains information on editing Enterprise Template Project files.
Policy File Location Precedence
Describes the policy file location resulting from a default installation of Visual Studio .NET and provides other information about policy file use.
Distributing Policy and Help Files
Explains how your Enterprise Template distribution method affects when developers will see any changes made to those files.
Managing Policy Versions
Describes the effects of editing the policy file after a project based on it has been started.
Distributing Custom Enterprise Templates
Describes the locations of the application template components.
Providing a Template for Download From the Web
Gives guidelines for how to create a setup program for providing a template across the Web, lists required files, and explains how to install a template.
Making Custom Enterprise Templates Available from a Central Location
Describes ways to make custom Enterprise Templates available to development team members.
Making Custom Enterprise Templates a Default Option for New Project Creation
Describes the way to display an icon for your project in the New Project or Add New Item dialog box.
Enterprise Templates Issues
Provides information about various aspects of using Enterprise Templates.

Related Sections

Enterprise Templates for Distributed Applications
Provides links to topics that describe the uses and advantages of Enterprise Templates and how to use them.
Policy Walkthroughs with TDL Files
Provide hands-on instruction on using and modifying Enterprise Templates.