So straight to the questions:
1. Yes our intention is to remove the classic (wizard based) approach for Reverse/Forward mapping and mold them into a single round-tripping designer (version 1 is the currently available one for reverse mapping). We hope we can do so for Q2 2010.
2. Actually this approach is a lot more powerful that the old one - not only visually and as interaction, but also you don't have two artificial workflow (reverse/forward) scenarios, but instead you will be able to intelligently manage the differences between model and schema in the data store in an seamless way. All that comes with Q2 and beyond.
3.Currently the Visual Designer is aimed at the basic scenarios. It does not support some really neat parts of OpenAccess as the optimizations (Fetch Plans) and some database specific settings - currently they are available only through the old UI and API.
Based on that, my advice is:
1. If you have to start developing an enterprise application right away, you should use the old way of doing things. Later on we will assist you into porting to the new API/Designer, plus we will release an upgrade tool for OpenAccess in Q2 (of course it will not be able to magically translate the application without any problems but it will help a lot).
2. If you don't have the intention to start immediately developing high-end features in an Enterprise application, I suggest you take a look at the Visual Designer, and if the time-frame for Q2/Q2 SP1 (mid/late July) is acceptable for you (we will have there round-tripping designer that allows forward mapping as well, new Fetch plans API, Backend Settings (store specific) functionality, very good Ria Services integration, etc.) maybe you should start form the beginning using the new approach provided by the product. Don't hesitate to ask any questions you might have.
the Telerik team
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