Sunday, 4 October 2009

5 Visual Studio 2010 New Features You Will Find Handy

Below are five Visual Studio 2010 new features that I feel are excellent additions to the product. On the whole I don't think the release is a massive revamp (apart from the user interface being redeveloped using WPF). It is more an enhancement of what was there before with some nice bells and whistles added in.

1. Multiple Config Files

I think one of the handiest new features is the ability to have multiple configuration files for different deployments! I currently find it a massive pain in the ass to have to maintain or update the config based on the deployment - LIVE and DEV for example. It is so easy to miss something - especially if someone else is performing an update to an unfamiliar or inherited system.

2. Detachable Code Windows

The ability to drag code windows from the main Visual Studio Interface and onto another monitor for example. This means you can work on multiple code windows at once if you have more than one monitor! A great little productivity enhancement.

3. Variable Highlighting

On selecting a variable in your code all other instances of that variable are highlighted. This speeds up finding things and therefore readability.

4. Change Tracking

This is just like in Word when you switch on change tracking / revisions. If you make a change to an area of code you are given the solid line at the edge of the code window. This is very helpful to show you where any modifications have been made to code.

5. Historical Debugging

Historical debugging is a very nice feature! Switching it on will make things slower but if you are looking for a needle in a haystack when searching for a bug - especially if you were debugging events for example then this feature will prove invaluable.

What it basically does is record your execution path and call stack etc and if your program falls over you can simply go back through the recording to show what happened and where. This eliminates having to set breakpoints etc. and re-run the code. Nice!!

I am sure there are a ton more handy little tweaks but these are just 5 I have liked so far.

No comments: