Microsoft Expression “Quartz Web Designer”

This morning at the PDC Microsoft announced the new Expression Designer line of products.  Included as part of the Expression suite is the new product currently codenamed Microsoft Expression “Quartz Web Designer”.


It provides a really rich designer focused web authoring tool that has full support for ASP.NET 2.0 – including rich support for ASP.NET Controls, Data-binding, Templates, Master Pages, Themes, Localization, etc.  It will be a great tool for designers to use when working on ASP.NET 2.0 solutions (developers use VS, designers use Expression – with the ability for both tools to edit the same web projects together). 


You can learn more about it here: If you are at the PDC there is a session this afternoon that will include a 50 minute demo of it that will really show off its capabilities. 


In the Visual Studio Orcas timeframe we will also be upgrading the VS Whidbey WYSIWYG web designer to use the Quartz design surface so that we can take advantage of its richer CSS and layout editing support.  If you attend the PDC session this afternoon you’ll also see a demo of a VS Orcas build showing this richer support off. 


Fun times ahead,




  • It looks like FrontPage. What is it's relationship with FrontPage?

  • Confused!

    Hi Scott, I appreciate your efforts to keep us all informed about developments as they happen but I have to admit to now being somewhat confused.

    We haven't seen the retail release of Visual Studio 2005 yet, and already we've Visual Studio 2005, Visual Web Developer, Atlas and now Quartz to think about.

    Could you explain how all of these products fit together, and roughly what sort of timeframes we're looking at for each of them. It might be easier to understand how they all fit together if we know the rough order in which they will be released.



  • Scott,

    Do you know in what way Quartz IDE affect web custom controls model?


  • Maybe it's a dumb question, but why base Orcas on Quartz when you already have FrontPage? Why weren't Whidbey, Everet (InterDev?!...) on FrontPage. Is it because they come from the Office division or are there other reasons?

    Anyway, glad to see that web developer's pains will end in like 3 years or whatever :) We can then stop using Dreamweaver... :p

  • Hello Scott

    I was wondering whether it will be possible to create a XAML MasterPage for ASP.NET 2.0 since XAML is so powerful.

    Developers could replace their boring HTML with veclor XAML stuff and place a content placeholders in the XAML MasterPage. Then the Default.aspx could load its design from XAML MasterPage and have this powerful web app.

  • Hi Jon,

    Visual Studio 2005, Visual Web Developer and ASP.NET 2.0 will be officially launched in early November -- so their time table is very soon.

    Atlas is available as a technology preview now, but won't RTM until next year. Quartz likewise won't RTM until next year.

    Hope this helps,


  • Hi Gabriel,

    Quartz uses the exact same web control designer infrastructure as Visual Studio. So if your controls works in VS, you are good to go in Quartz.

    Hope this helps,


  • Does it support nested/cascading CSS, or nested Master Pages? VS2005 doesn't. Darn it.

  • Hi Barry,

    Yep -- it supports nested master pages in WYSIWYG mode (it should also handle nested CSS). The next version of VS will as well.

    Hope this helps,


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