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Tech Tips, Tricks & Trivia

by 'Anil' Radhakrishna
An architect's notes, experiments, discoveries and annotated bookmarks.

Search from over a hundred HOW TO articles, Tips and Tricks

Notes from Pluralsight course "Introduction to Visual Studio 2010 - Part 2"

Introduction to Visual Studio 2010 - Part 2  importantly covers IntelliTrace & Extensions. Some interesting facts about VS from the video course -
  • You can debug a release build. Release folder can contain .pdb. PDB – Program Debug Database
  • Deploy Release version of build. Depending on the third party libraries you are using, their licensing terms  may not allow you to deploy the Debug version.
  • Build > Clean Solution throws away all the products of a prior Build. This will mean that the next build will be full build.
  • Rather than doing a Clean Solution & then Build Solution, you can directly do a Rebuild Solution
  • Look at Locals window after a breakpoint is hit for variable values. Use Watch window for specific variables
  • DataTip dimensions can be modified  
  • Ctrl + Datatip – for a transparent background, useful when you want to see code behind a datatip
  • Pin a DataTip to see variable value change dynamically inside it.It can be dragged, unpinned or closed.
  • Trivia: Codename of IntelliTrace was Historical Debugging
  • IntelliTrace is available in VS Ultimate only  
  • Saves a trace file of execution path & values of member variables
  • By default has very little performance impact
  • IntelliTrace can provide time travel & space travel (you can test a iTrace file on computers other than originating one to analyze "works on my machine" scenarios)
  • When you close VS, itrace files are gone so save it elsewhere. You can get the iTrace file's location from Tools > Options | IntelliTrace > Advanced 
  • You can open a itrace file within VS. Double click main thread in thread window to replicate scenario & start debugging on a different computer.
  • Using traces from other machines lets you share bugs with other developers or avoid "works on my machine"
  • Visual Studio Extensions can boost productivity. There are over 2400 extensions for different versions of VS on VisualStudioGallery.com
  • Use Tools > Extension Manager to enable/disable/uninstall update
  • Productivity Power Tools by Microsoft is a bundle of popular extensions that includes features that go on to become standard features in future VS versions. Some features in Pro Power Tools include -
- Highlight current line
- Auto brace completion
- Ctrl-Click Go To Definition
- Column guides (to check length of each code statement does not go beyond a specific column number)
- Quick Access (Windows Vista/7 like universal Find)

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Posted by Anonymous Pranav Ainavolu | 5/28/2011 03:53:00 AM

I too saw the video recently. They have covered some interesting features in it. Thanks for noting down and sharing them!    


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