Hi! My name is Brian Tyler and I'm the technical lead for the VS Project Team here at Microsoft. Our areas of responsibility are those surrounding projects and solutions in Visual Studio - specifically the C++, C# and VB project systems - but we're involved in other code bases in those areas as well. We are also - obviously - very related to Build and are actually part of the same team that handles MSBuild. Hey guys!

We're just starting off on the team blog and we're excited about all the things to talk about. For starters, we're going to focus on the new things coming your way in VS 2010. Specifically we'll be starting with our major effort in this release: the conversion of the VC++ project system from VCBuild to MSBuild. All this work wasn't just accomplished by us and MSBuild, but also included several folks a few floors down from us in VC++ land. Hey you other guys!

This conversion is not just a matter of project file format or build engine - it was a fairly serious rewrite of many parts of the VC++ project system. A primary goal in this move to MSBuild was to give a much more flexible project and build system to our C++ customers - and I hope you'll take advantage of it during the beta and give us your thoughts. These include

  • A highly customizable build process thanks to MSBuild.
  • An extensible tool system that lets you add your own toolsets to the UI - using the same technology we used for CL, LINK, etc.
  • A high-performance incremental build based on a file-system tracking tool - this ensures the incremental knowledge is exact (and available for your tools as well).
  • An extensible platform system allowing anyone to define and add their own custom platforms - again using the same technology we used to add Win32 and x64.
  • Native multi-targeting - you can now upgrade to the VS 2010 experience while still using the VS 2008 toolsets (compilers, linkers, libraries and headers).
  • Enlistment-based toolsets - you can now check in your toolsets and platforms into source code control to provide versioning control for all developers, build machines, etc.

And that's just what is new in VC++ projects for VS 2010....like I said, we've got a lot to talk about. So expect to see posting as regularly as we can manage while we dive into the details of these topics - and rattle our cage if we fall behind. Also make sure to post a comment or send us an email for other topics you'd like to see covered.