Customizing query string parameter binding in ASP.NET Core MVC

A few years ago I blogged about binding parameters from URI in ASP.NET Web API. One of the examples in that post was how to bind a comma-separated collection passed to your API as a query string parameter.

Technologies change, and we now work with ASP.NET Core (and the MVC Core framework), but problems remain the same – so let’s have a look at how we can customize the way parameters are bound from query string in ASP.NET Core MVC.

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Using MessagePack with ASP.NET Core MVC

Some time ago (actually, almost 5 years ago), I blogged about using MessagePack with ASP.NET Web API in order to improve your API’s efficiency over JSON – both in terms of serialization speed and in message payload size.

That code later made it to the WebApiContrib project, where it was released as an add-on to ASP.NET Web API.

I recently had a thought – since we now have WebApiContrib.Core for ASP.NET Core, why not revisit the idea, and create a MessagePack add-on for that too?

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Using IActionConstraints in ASP.NET Core MVC

ASP.NET Core provides a way to constraint parameter values when matching routes via an IRouteConstraint (read more here) interface. This can be very useful, if you want to disambiguate certain routes from one another. This functionality is built into the routing package and is independent from the MVC framework.

However, aside from that, the MVC framework itself also provides an interesting constraint-mechanism – IActionConstraints. Let’s have a look at them today.

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Resolving ASP.NET Core Startup class from the DI container

In ASP.NET Core, the most common setup is characterized by having a standalone Startup class, responsible for bootstrapping the services needed by your application, as well as setting up the application pipeline.

What most users of ASP.NET Core do not realize, is that at runtime, the Startup instance is actually being resolved from the DI container. This allows you to control some interesting aspects of how your application is bootstrapped, which can be really important i.e. in integration testing scenarios.

Let’s have a look.

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Using Roslyn refactorings with OmniSharp and Visual Studio Code

One of the features that we added to a recent OmniSharp release (which, as a reminder, backs the C# language services in various editors), and that quietly shipped in C# for Visual Studio Code 1.10.0 last week, was the ability to use external Roslyn refactorings.

Before, OmniSharp shipped with some built-in Roslyn refactorings (i.e. move type to file) but this new feature allows a user to import custom refactorings – either self- or 3rd-party built.

It’s still an experimental feature, so it needs to be switched on manually, but hopefully it can provide you some much neeeded productivity boost.

Let’s have a look at how that’s done.

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Running multiple independent ASP.NET Core pipelines side by side in the same application

The other day I started looking into a problem of being able to run several independent ASP.NET Core pipelines from within the same main application, running on top of the same Kestrel server. This was actually asked on MVC Github repo but closed without a real answer.

Let’s have a detailed look at the problem, and (one) possible solution to it.

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Disposing resources at the end of ASP.NET Core request

Today, let’s have a look at dealing with disposable objects in ASP.NET Core. Imagine you have an object that you’d like to reuse throughout the duration of the HTTP request, but at the end, it must clean up some of its open resources or handles. This is a common requirement for i.e. file writers, DB connections, other unmanaged resources or external processes – to mention just a few.

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Building microservices with ASP.NET Core (without MVC)

There are several reasons why it makes sense to build super-lightweight HTTP services (or, despite all the baggage the word brings, “microservices”). I do not need to go into all the operational or architectural benefits of such approach to system development, as it has been discussed a lot elsewhere.

It feels natural that when building such HTTP services, it definitely makes sense to keep the footprint of the technology you chose as small as possible, not to mention the size of the codebase you should maintain long term.

In this point I wanted to show a couple of techniques for building very lightweight HTTP services on top ASP.NET Core, without the use of any framework, and with minimal code bloat.

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