Microsoft has just introduced the new version of WebMatrix. When this post is written it’s still in BETA version.

if you were ASP.NET developer when it’s in 1.1 version, you might ever tried WebMatrix, it was free as it’s today. At that time there was no Express edition of Visual Studio and WebMatrix was the free tool to develop ASP.NET website if you didn’t want to buy Visual Studio.

What is this?
WebMatrix is everything you need to build Web sites using Windows. It includes IIS Developer Express (a development Web server), ASP.NET (a Web framework), and SQL Server Compact (an embedded database). It streamlines Web site development and makes it easy to start Web sites from popular open-source apps. The skills and code you develop with WebMatrix transition seamlessly to Visual Studio and SQL Server.

Why Use It?
You will use the same powerful Web server, database engine and web framework that will run your Web site on the Internet, which makes the transition from development to product seamless. Beyond ensuring everything just works, WebMatrix includes new features that make Web development easier.

Who’s it for?
WebMatrix is for developers, students, or just about anyone who just wants a small and simple way to build Web sites. Start coding, testing, and deploying your own Web sites without having to worry about configuring your own Web server, managing databases, or learning a lot of concepts. WebMatrix makes Web site development easy.

Code Without Boundaries
WebMatrix provides an easy way to get started with Web development. With an integrated code editor and a database editor, Web site and server management, search optimization, FTP publishing, and more, WebMatrix provides a fresh, new Web site development experience that seamlessly bridges all the key components you need in order to create, run, and deploy a Web site.

As your needs grow, the code and skills you develop can seamlessly transition to Visual Studio – Microsoft’s premier development suite.

WebMatrix – Quick Start screen
On first-time run of Microsoft WebMatrix, below screen will be the default screen on WebMatrix.

if you don’t like it you can disable it by giving “Do not show this screen on start-up” a check mark. It will then run My Sites as default screen and open the last site you’re working with.

Later you want the Quick Start screen to get back you can close the opened site it will bring you the Quick Start screen and you can remove the check mark if you want.

Okay let’s try the menu item one by one.

My Sites
It will open a dialog with all sites you ever worked with in the list. Select a site and click OK button to open, or you can just double click the site.

I found that there is no way to remove a site from the list at this Beta version. Maybe it will be added in the newer version… let’s hope… err suggest to them.

Site From Web Gallery
This option will open a dialog to select a website or application from Web Gallery. This is the same as installing community website or application using Web PI but in this Microsoft WebMatrix the website or application will not be installed in IIS but rather they will be stored in %user%\Documents\My Web Sites folder and will be run in IIS Developer Express by default when you’re working with the site on WebMatrix. (if you want you can also add the website or application to your computer IIS manually)

Site From Template
This is where all funs will start. You can create your own site from online templates listed there.

When you create a new site from template, you will find that there are new extensions .cshtml and .vbhtml – yep they are new extension introduced by Microsoft as ASP.NET Web Page and  it supports Razor Syntax.