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Thursday February 23, 2017
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Visual Studio Extensions

Addins, Plugins, Packages...


Visual Studio is a powerful package, and is used by developers across the world, because of its flexibility and power.  One of its greatest things, is its extendablity.  Loads of people use Visual Studio day-in day-out, but very rarely take the take to learn how to write custom macros, custom plugins, or even a custom debugger.

For example, as I'll show, if you work with python a lot, and you might have noticed that Visual Studio doesn't colour code your words, or even predict words with intellisense, which puts you off using it for python files.  But visual studio lets you add your own custom colour coding, you can adding buttons that will convert code, add dialogs, windows, anything you can think of, theres an option for it to make your development work easier.
Most of the new tutorials here will be for Visual Studio 2005/2008 and 2010, even though some of the older code will run on earlier versions (2003).

Packages - Hardcore SDK

Packages are the low level stuff which lets you do the hardcore stuff in visual studio. If you want to write your own debugger, then you can write a custom package for it.  Or if you can a custom colour coder with intellisense, then a package is the way to go.  To work with packages though, you need the Visual Studio SDK, which you can download from Microsoft for free.

o Getting started
o Adding some colour
o ..
o Hint and Helper Code Snippets



Addins - Fast Simple And Powerful.

If you need to add a find dialog, or right click on a word and bring up a list of options, bring up a dialog to process something, or just run another package and print out the errors in the error window in visual studio, you can do all that with an Addin.  Addins are simple and easy to get started with, and give you lots of power with little overhead.

o Smiley Button
o Busy with a Dialog!
o ..




Programs and Demos


I'm always writing little addins/packages to make my life a little easier, so I thought I'd share them below.

o Visual Studio Addin - General Helper Options                                        [Tutorial]        [SourceCode] (2005/08)
o Visual Studio Python Syntax Colour Coder ( C# )                                   [Tutorial]        [SourceCode] (2005/08)
o Visual Studio Python Syntax Colour Coder ( lex & babel )                      [Tutorial]        [SourceCode]
o Visual Studio Python Syntax Colour Coder ( non-lex & babel )               [Tutorial]        [SourceCode] (2005)


o Office Word Code C/C++ Syntax Colour Highlighter (C#)                     [Tutorial] (2007)


.. more soon.


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