I am a big fan of working with the community in a collaborative way.  We have been making some good steps forward in this regard in the last couple of years and last week, we took another step forward in this journey.


We released several new Shared Source tools that include source code to real-world tools and encourage customers to extend the tools as needed, essentially creating mini-communities for help and support for related tasks.


1.  Power Toys for Visual Studio – these power toys are targeted at providing solutions to developer pain-points and diagnostic tools for support services. There are currently three tools available for customers to consume and contribute to.


  • MSBeean addition to MSBuild that allows developers to build managed applications with MSBuild using Visual Studio 2005 projects that target .NET 1.1. 
  • Managed Stack Explorer – a lightweight tool that provides a quick and easy way to monitor .NET 2.0 managed processes and their stacks. 

Check out each project’s homepage for ways you can participate, including helping out with the latest bugs and feature requests.  Already in the first week, there have been nearly 1,000 downloads of MSBee and almost 700 downloads of Managed Stack Explorer and TFS Admin Tool each. And bug fixes have already been submitted just in the first week!


For the latest information regarding the power toys, visit the Developer Solutions Team Blog.


2.  “Atlas” Control Toolkit – a collection of great, reusable components to be used with “Atlas”, our new framework for delivering richer and more interactive web applications.  But the Toolkit is more than just a set of great components, it’s the start of a community effort to build the best set of web-client UI pieces available anywhere.   You can check out working samples of the thirteen components and download the full source for the ToolkitThere have been over 300 downloads of the Atlas toolkit this week.


Keep an eye on Shawn Burke’s blog for the latest details.