Visual Studio Blog

The official source of product insight from the Visual Studio Engineering Team

How to: Retarget a project using DTE
How to: Retarget a project using DTE
The upcoming .NET Framework 4 and Visual Studio 2010 (now in RC) has a lot of exciting new features. From BigInt and parallel libraries, to code contracts, CLR side by side, a new project system for C++ and multi-targeting. Just to name a few. There is much more. No matter what features you are the most interested in, you can start exploring...
Getting Started with MSBuild
Getting Started with MSBuild
I have had several customers asking me about MSBuild and how to get started learning the language and using it. A little over a year and a half ago, I joined the MSBuild team. When I got here, I did not even know what MSBuild was, and I have been a Visual Studio user for many years. This article is to help you understand what MSBuild is, how ...
Visual Studio 2010 background flickering and customization
Visual Studio 2010 background flickering and customization
We had in the last days a couple of reports of Visual Studio’s background flickering on old LCD monitors because of the texture and the colors used by default by the shell. So far we have not been able to reproduce in-house the problem (and I suspect this is caused by either old video card drivers or monitors not supporting properly the ...
Troubleshooting Extensions with the Activity Log
Troubleshooting Extensions with the Activity Log
One of the most powerful tools for troubleshooting issues that involve Visual Studio extensions is often overlooked, even though it has been around for quite some time (since VS 2005). Anyone wondering what Visual Studio is doing with their VS Package, Extension, MEF Component, or pkgdef file should ask the IDE for an activity log. In ...
MSBuild Task Factories: guest starring Windows Powershell
MSBuild Task Factories: guest starring Windows Powershell
One of the cool new features of MSBuild 4.0 is the extensible task factory.  Task factories allow you to include scripts directly in your project file (or an imported .targets file) and have those scripts parsed and executed by your favorite interpreter.  Those scripts might even be C# or VB.NET code snippets that get compiled into ...
How VSIX extensions are discovered and loaded in VS 2010
How VSIX extensions are discovered and loaded in VS 2010
VSIX is the new technology used for deploying extensions in Visual Studio 2010. The primary goal of this new technology is to encourage extension creation and consumption by easing the management (“management” meaning Browsing/Installing/Uninstalling/Enabling/Disabling) of Visual Studio extensions. To take full advantage of the VSIX ...
Build Extensibility with .NET Framework 4
Build Extensibility with .NET Framework 4
Introduction With the release of .NET Framework 4 and Visual Studio 2010 comes MSBuild 4.0. Among the many great features in this version are new mechanisms to allow you (or your build lab) to extend the default build targets files with your own customizations. While some of this functionality did exist in previous versions, it has been made ...
Covariance and Contravariance FAQ
Covariance and Contravariance FAQ
In this post I’ll try to answer the most common questions I find on forums and in documentation feedback about C# covariance and contravariance. It’s a big topic for a single blog post, so expect to see a lot of “more information” links. Special thanks to Eric Lippert and Chris Burrows for reviewing and providing ...
WPF in Visual Studio 2010 – Part 1 : Introduction
WPF in Visual Studio 2010 – Part 1 : Introduction
This is the first part in a seven part series. Links to the other parts are included at the bottom of this post. Now that the Release Candidate for Visual Studio 2010 is publicly available, we’ve started receiving questions from inquisitive users about how Visual Studio 2010 itself was built. In particular, one questioner wanted to ...