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ASP.NET WebPages powered by Knockout, ASP.NET Web API, and Entity Framework over the Northwind database. All generated by T4 Scaffolding.
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Alfero's Northwind Project

This project is a demonstration of several technologies

  • Entity Framework Code-First
  • ASP.NET WebPages
  • Knockout
  • T4 Scaffolding
  • Twitter Bootstrap
  • JQuery

Entity Framework

Here I wanted to find out if I can use Entity Framework Code First without modifying the database. Evidently, this is very possible for an application of this size. There are some minor hacks I had to employ around code-generated unique keys, but I'm sure there is an elegant way to handle those.

ASP.NET Web Pages

While discussing with a co-worker I came up with an idea to put together a project that demonstrates the feasibility of building a functional application with just ASP.NET Web Pages and ASP.NET Web API controllers. Very quickly it turned out there were a lot of repetitive steps that could be automated. That's where T4 Scaffolding came in.


I simply fell in love with the concept, but wasn't sure if I could build a scalable real-world application with it. Again, I'm not an expert here, but a little research brought me thus far. What I found interesting was dealing with the Order-OrderDetail relationship.

T4 Scaffolding

Initially I used T4 Toolbox to build and run the templates that generate Models, Controllers, and Views. However, it became very clear to me that Scaffolding was a better approach:

  • There are a number of built-in powershell functions and scaffolders to get you started
  • There are a number of helpful ENVDTE extensions for discovering code
  • Does not require the referenced project to be compiled first (as I was using reflection previously).

Twitter Bootstrap

I now prefer this framework over jQuery UI. Just me.


I don't think I have to explain this one.

Getting Started

Just open the project in Visual Studio and run.

This Project Sucks?

Probably so, but all comments are welcome. I had no real incentive to demonstrate any other technology besides the ones listed above. I know I don't have any tests in this project, but that wasn't the point. Feel free to add if you're so inclined. This is a very rough implementation from a non-expert, so I'm pretty sure this can be improved (especially the scaffolding code - it's super ugly, I know).


  • Polish up application functionality
  • Polish up scaffolders
  • Add Client-side validation with JQuery.Validate
  • Contribute extensions to the T4 Scaffolding core
  • Create a new WebPages/Knockout Scaffolding nuget package (help?) for scaffolding plain razor pages with Knockout bindings
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