I’ve written a few posts recently about my initial attempts to get started with SharePoint development. I got a few notifications on Monday from WordPress, letting me know that I had new blog comments waiting for approval, all on those SharePoint posts. They were all extolling the virtues of a certain company that provides cloud VMs for development and testing, including SharePoint VMs. (And I’m pretty sure these comments were written by an employee of that company.) I considered approving and posting them, since they did seem to have been written by an actual human, and they were somewhat relevant. But it bothered me that this person felt they had to add comments to every post I wrote that mentions SharePoint; if it was just one comment on one post, I would probably have gone ahead and approved it. But commenting on multiple posts, with nearly identical comments and links back to that company’s site and blog, is kind of questionable. Not quite spam, but close.
I had actually considered signing up for an account with these guys and using one of their SharePoint VMs to get started, until my dev VM at work could be set up. But I decided to just wait, and now that I’ve got the VM at work, I really don’t need a cloud VM. I would still consider them if I ever needed to do some SharePoint work outside of my day job, and if I could justify the cost.
Regardless, my dev VM at work is now all set up, and I’m actually doing some real SharePoint development. I’m finding it to be an enjoyable change of pace from my usual Dynamics AX work. I only have 8 GB of RAM allocated to my VM, and I have a fairly complete SharePoint install on it, but things are still working reasonably quickly.
The debugging experience is better than I expected it to be. It’s really no different than debugging a regular ASP.NET page. I’ve heard so many bad things about SharePoint development, I was expecting it to be a real bear, but it honestly hasn’t been bad.