See What’s New in Visual Studio 2019 v16.6 Preview 3!

Jacqueline Widdis

Today we are excited to reveal some new features in Visual Studio 2019 version 16.6 Preview 3. Despite our challenges of learning how to work from home such as interruptions by kids, pets and internet blips, we continue to deliver new features to you. We are also eagerly preparing for our first virtual Build 2020 conference in May. We’d love to hear from where in the world you’ll be watching! Until the start of the conference, we hope these new features will keep you busy creating the software your imagination designs. Thank you for downloading our preview version, and, as always, we value your feedback through Developer Community.


Version Control

First up in our new feature list is continual expansion of Git functionality in Visual Studio 2019. To access these additional updates, you can toggle the Preview Feature for New Git user experience under the Tools > Options menu. Unlike the prior experience, when you clone a repository with one solution, Visual Studio 2019 will automatically load the solution after the clone completes. Consequently, this saves you valuable time.

We have also updated the user interface for committing and stashing with an enhanced amend experience for commits. Furthermore, we listened to your Developer Community feedback about remote branch management. Specifically, we have added the requested functionality into the branch dropdown. In addition, you can now create a new branch commit in your repository history.

Finally, we have added several new commands in the top-level Git menu for easy keyboard access. These include Clone repository, view branch history, open repository in file explorer or command prompt, manage remotes, and Git global repository settings.

Git - Remotes - origin/Branch A
New Git user Experience in Visual Studio 2019 version 16.6 Preview 3


Git - Amending commit - Commit All - Changes
New Git User Experience in Visual Studio 2019 v16.6 Preview 3

Visual Studio Terminal

Within the terminal, we have added the ability to change the font face and size via the Fonts and Colors dialog.

Terminal Options - Fonts and Colors
Fonts and Colors Option in Visual Studio 2019 v16.6 Preview 3


Mobile Developer Tools

On the mobile front, XAML Hot Reload is now even faster and maintains more state on your page when you make a change. Your XAML change no longer makes the full-page refresh thanks to the Changes Only Reload setting in Tools > Options > Xamarin > Hot Reload. In Preview, this new reload method can be turned on or off at any time. If you chose to turn it on, you’ll also get the new Live Visual Tree during debugging. Therefore, this lets you see what controls are on the page of your running app!

Additionally, Xamarin.Android developers will notice their UI edits getting easier with new updates to make Android Apply Changes faster.

Microsoft Fakes for .NET Core and SDK-Style Projects

As explained in our documentation, Microsoft Fakes is a mocking framework that helps isolate your tests by “mocking” certain parts of your code with stubs or shims. This mocking helps untangle a test from your product code so it can focus on testing only what it is relevant in each test. Microsoft Fakes now supports .NET Core! You can enable this feature in Tools > Options > Preview  Features. You may find you want to migrate your apps and testing suites to .NET Core, and now a large portion of that work is possible.

Wishing You and Yours the Best

As this post concludes, I am reminded of a developer who reached out on LinkedIn. He shared how the release of new features made his time of social isolation bearable. Like many of us, he’d rather create through trying new things. In this spirit, we will continue to prioritize making our product more reliable while still capturing the innovative ideas and suggestions shared on Developer Community. Please feel welcome to participate in our online forums. As always, we wish health and safety to you and those closest to you.


Discussion is closed. Login to edit/delete existing comments.

  • Bart Sipes 0

    This is awesome! I’ve been waiting for expanded Fakes support for a long time. Thanks all!

    • Jacqueline WiddisMicrosoft employee 0

      Glad to hear you are excited to give it a try. I’ll pass it on your thanks to the team.

      • Fons Sonnemans 0

        I could get the Fakes to work. There is nothing ‘Fakes’ related in the Tools > Options > Preview Features. Am I missing something. Some docs would be nice.

      • Joseph Wisener 0

        I do not see this option in available.

    • KendraHavensMicrosoft employee 0

      We will update the release notes shortly, but I wanted to note that we found a minor deployment issue with the Microsoft Fakes preview feature that will be fixed in the next release. For now, if you are using Visual Studio Enterprise and the Fakes preview feature is missing under Tools > Options, you can still enable this feature by setting the environment variable, “_Fakes_Enable_CPS_Support” to “true”. To set this via powershell run

      • Jorge Levy 0

        How is managing environment variables?

  • Markus Bach 0

    It’s just ridiculous to keep throwing new previews on the market when the normal version contains bugs that make it impossible to use. When will the mouse focus bug be finally fixed so that you can work with VS 2019 again? The quality of Mcrosoft products is in a sad state and it is getting worse …

    • Tsahi 0

      Every software product has bugs. The fact is many do use Visual Studio 2019, so saying it’s impossible to use is false. Perhaps there is a bug that annoys you personally, but I bet if you get over it, you’ll be able to use it too.

      And remember, a bug won’t be fixed if it isn’t reported.

  • Jiří Zídek 0

    I hope that there will be some guidance how “New Git user experience” plays with “GitHub Extension for Visual Studio” we use currently.

    • Pratik NadagoudaMicrosoft employee 0

      The GitHub Extension for Visual Studio is managed by our partner team in GitHub. Today, you can use it for Gists, Pull Requests, and Forks as those are features we have not yet implemented in the Visual Studio Git experience. For overlapping functionality like Clone, Create, and Publish, as well as any new features, we recommend you use the built-in Visual Studio experience since that is what we are actively developing and responding to feedback on.

  • Matthew Peterson 0

    This new Git experience is really starting to look good!

    • Pratik NadagoudaMicrosoft employee 0

      Thank you Matthew! We’re glad you’re liking it!

  • eivind tjore 0

    Hi, I’m trying vs preview and cannot find the “Related work items” option (to link azure devops work items to the commit) in neither the new Git tool nor the old Changes view in Team Explorer.

    • Pratik NadagoudaMicrosoft employee 0

      Hi that’s one of the features that was left out of the initial iteration of the new Git experience. It would be awesome if you could submit a suggestion ticket at so that others can vote on it and follow the thread for updates on this feature.

  • Jorge Levy 0

    Is Microsoft Fake also available for VS Community version?

    • KendraHavensMicrosoft employee 0

      No, it is still an Enterprise-only feature.

  • Michael Taylor 0

    While I think the new Git window is a step up I really don’t like the fact that it isn’t in Team Explorer which everyone is already used to using for every other source code provider. This new Git experience needs to be in Team Explorer rather than adding yet another tool window to cause confusion (see Server Explorer and SQL Server Object Explorer, Properties window and Properties tab, etc).

    If Team Explorer doesn’t have the functionality you need to implement the new Git functionality then expand it. There are providers other than Git and maybe they need this functionality too.

    • Pratik NadagoudaMicrosoft employee 0

      Hey Michael – you’re right, and we had initially considered reusing Team Explorer. But we came to the conclusion that the complexity and discoverability issues for new users would be too much of a detriment. Our goal is to streamline and simplify the Git UX for users of all experience levels. And as part of this effort, we’re focusing solely on the Git functionality. We want to continue to maintain all other source control providers within Team Explorer. But a big part of the problem with Team Explorer was the name itself. While it has strong connections with TFVC and TFS, ‘Team Explorer’ doesn’t resonate with Git terminology in any way. I hope that makes it more clear.

  • Certs Master 0

    In Preview, this new reload method can be turned on or off at any time. If you chose to turn it on, you’ll also get the new Live Visual Tree during debugging. Therefore, this lets you see what controls are on the page of your running app!

  • Waleed Ahmad 0

    This new Git experience is really starting to look good!

  • Jerry Kowalski 0

    Awesome! Just installed VS2019 Pro Preview as I have VS2017 Pro. Ran them both side by side. Just had to add Wix Extension for 2019 and I was able to build our product with no issue. So far so good with running our product executables. Thank You!

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