Sara Ford's Weblog

My adventures embracing open source on CodePlex and at Microsoft

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  • Blog Post: Using the ClassName() snippet function - an operator declaration snippet example

    A previous tip of the week mentioned how to use the SimpleTypeName() snippet function.  Here’s how to use the SimpleTypeName() function alongside the ClassName() function.  The ClassName() function will automatically substitute the name of the outer class.  For example, if you had class...
  • Blog Post: Getting more space between your variables and their declarations in C#

    Let’s say you want to keep your formatting rules enabled, but want to get some additional space between your variables and their declarations. You can put a C-style inline comment in the whitespace between the two. For example, class Class1 {    int/**/ a = 1;    int/*...
  • Blog Post: How to change the generated method stub code for C#

    Before you apply this tip… I strongly recommend that you backup any snippets installed by VS that you may want to modify.  Take it from a former code Snippet QA that you will want to do this. This tip requires having access to your Program Files directory, so use appropriate caution Do not change...
  • Blog Post: Customize your Find in Files Results experience!

    Another awesome hidden editor feature… You can customize your Find in Files results to show what you want to see and how you want to see it. Example:  You don’t want to view the entire file path shown in the Find Results tool window. Find all "using", Match case, Whole word, Subfolders...
  • Blog Post: Emacs and Brief Emulations Updates Available

    Dylan , one of our editor devs, has posted some workarounds to Emacs and Brief Emulations bugs on GotDotNet. The Brief Emulation Add-in addresses the following issues: Bug FDBK38309 :  BRIEF editor emulation for cut with no selection incorrect  Bug FDBK40426 :  Paste of code block incorrectly...
  • Blog Post: MSBuild Extras – Toolkit for .NET 1.1 “MSBee” Beta 1 Released!

    The Developer Solutions team (the team I joined 4 weeks ago) is proud to announce the release of MSBuild Extras – Toolkit for .NET 1.1 “MSBee.”  MSBee is an addition to MSBuild that allows developers to build managed applications in Visual Studio 2005 that target .NET 1.1. You can download MSBee...
  • Blog Post: The top 10 most visited tips

    Today’s post marks the 100th Tip on the Tip of the Week!  To celebrate the occasion, let’s recap our top 10 most visited* tips. #10 – How to bind Keyboard Shortcuts to commands #9 – How to do column selection #8 – What C# books to read #7 – How to optimize Visual Studio for Multi-Monitor setups...
  • Blog Post: Disable Add-ins on Start-Up by holding the Left-Shift key down

    If you ever want to disable add-ins from starting on launch, you can hold down the Left-Shift key while VS is loading.  If you find yourself running into random crashes, you might want to try disabling add-ins (either by this Left-Shift method or going to the Tools – Add-in Manager) to determine...
  • Blog Post: VS Macro to Build a Web.SiteMap file from your project system file layout

    Today’s tip comes from Scott Allen’s blog .  Scott has provided a VS 2005 macro that will dynamically build a web.sitemap file based on the files in your project . For any questions related to ASP.NET, please check out the ASP.NET forums ! Got an ASP.NET Tip?  Submit it here! Happy Visual Studio...
  • Blog Post: Visual Studio 2005 Automation Samples are now available!

    You can find the VS 2005 Automation Samples at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=79C7E038-8768-4E1E-87AE-5BBBE3886DE8&displaylang=en If you have any questions regarding the samples, you can ask them at the Extensibility Forum. http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowForum.aspx...
  • Blog Post: How a project max path and solution name length is calculated

    You’ve may have noticed that sometimes your project name is too long where other times it is accepted in the New Project Dialog.  As explained by Paul on the Visual Studio General Forums … The OS limit is 260 characters (MAX_PATH).  However, the computation is:   Path length + 1 (separator...
  • Blog Post: Use devenv /edit to open any file in an existing Visual Studio instance (VSEdit functionality)

    For those of you who used the VSEdit Powertoy for VS 2003, you’ll be happy to know that you can have similar behavior in VS 2005! Just run “devenv.exe /edit <filename>” from the command line to open any file in an existing instance of Visual Studio 2005. You may want to create a VSEdit command...
  • Blog Post: How to set your current project to always be the startup project

    Sweet!  Today’s tip is our first tip sent in by a customer.  Got a VS tip you want to share?  Saw a great tip on the MSDN Forums?  Let me know! Right-click on your solution in the Solution Explorer, select “Set StartUp Projects…”. From there, select “Current Selection” and click ...
  • Blog Post: Keyboard Navigation and Transparency with DataTips

    Today’s tip comes from both Jim and Steve . From Steve’s blog : Hold the Ctrl button down to make DataTips transparent. [ Pictures ] From Jim’s blog : DataTip Keyboard Functionality Use the [down] and [up] arrows to move through the items in the expanded tip. Use [pgup] and [pgdn] to scroll a page at...
  • Blog Post: The Automatic Qualifying of Classnames via SmartTags

    Did you know you can use SmartTags to automatically qualify your classnames?  Using C# as an example, let’s say you were to type in private Process proc; But you don’t have the appropriate using statement included in your code.  You can put the cursor over Process to invoke the SmartTag icon...
  • Blog Post: How to recursively copy files using the <Copy> Task in MSBuild

    From the MSBuild Team Blog … Have you ever run into a situation where you had to recursively copy files from one folder into another as a part of your build process?  We certainly have run into it a few times, and I thought I’d share with you a neat trick that involves the use of metadata and the...
  • Blog Post: Did you know... how to use the Undo and Redo commands on the standard toolbar

    This blog post has been moved to http://saraford.net/2005/11/02/did-you-know-how-to-use-the-undo-and-redo-commands-on-the-standard-toolbar/
  • Blog Post: What does that Restore File Associations button do on the Tools-Options-Environment page?

    You may have wondered what that Restore File Associations button does on the Tools-Options-Environment page.  This button allows you to restore your file extensions for VS 2005, in case any were broken after uninstalling a previous version of Visual Studio or if a 3rd-party tool reregistered an...
  • Blog Post: Use devenv /log to troubleshoot VS issues

    VS 2005 has a built-in logging system to help Product Support Services troubleshoot Visual Studio issues. You may find it useful to troubleshoot issues on your own. Run "Devenv.exe /log" The log file is written out to %USERPROFILE%\Application Data\Microsoft\Visual Studio\8.0\ActivityLog.xml...
  • Blog Post: Adding Solutions to Solutions

    If you ever need to combine solutions, here’s how to do it… 1. Open your main solution (the solution you want to add another solution to) 2. Go to File – Add – Add Existing Project 3. Change “Files of type” to Solution Files 4. Select the sln file Results: All of your projects have now been successfully...
  • Blog Post: How to hide numerous projects in the solution explorer using solution folder hiding

    In Visual Studio 2005, solution folders improve the manageability of solutions that contain a large number of projects.  You can group projects within the solution into these solution folders.  However, just having a project hierarchy isn’t enough.  Users of very large solutions may want...
  • Blog Post: How to change the font and font size for Intellisense: Statement Completion, Parameter Info, and Quick Tips

    Visual Studio 2005 now has the option to change the font and font size for Intellisense. To change settings: Go to Tools – Options – Environment - Fonts and Colors Under Show settings for: select either Statement Completion or Editor Tooltips (for Parameter Info and Quick Tips) Change either the font...
  • Blog Post: How to customize your MSBuild project file manually

    To hand-modify your managed project file, right click on the project, choose Unload, right click again, choose Edit. After editing (with intellisense!) save and close. Right click on the project, choose Reload. (If you are using Beta 2, after unloading the project, do File>Open>File and choose...
  • Blog Post: Type-Ahead Selection works in Solution Explorer

    If you’re working in a large solution or a project that contains numerous files, one quick way to jump to the file you want to open is to type the first few letters of the filename.  For example, if I were on filename “Class1” and wanted to select “ReadMe.txt”, I could just press Ctrl+Alt+L (in...
  • Blog Post: Use Ctrl+Alt+DownArrow to quickly access all your open files

    Today’s tip comes from “some cool dev” who wrote the new Window Management features for Visual Studio 2005.  At the end of the File Tab Channel, there’s a drop-down arrow and a close ‘x’ button.  If you press the drop-down arrow, you’ll get a menu of all the open files in Visual Studio in alphabetical...
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