Visual Studio Hints and Tips #3 – Visual Studo Class Designer

One of the really exciting new features of Visual Studio 2005 is the Class Designer. The Class Designer allows the programmer to quickly and easily set up the basic structure of a new class using a graphical interface. Using the Class Designer you name fields, properties, methods and events that make up a class. Fo each item you can specify the data types and parameters involved. The code will be created automatically. Not only that but if you add code in the code window and add, for example, a new field it will show up in the Class Designer window automatically.

To use the Class Designer select a class from from the Solution Explorer or from the Class View window and click on the View Class Diagram icon  from the icon menu. You can also right click on a class and select iew Class Diagram from the drop down menu. When you open the Class Designer you will open the Class Diagram from and the Class Details form (at the bottom of the IDE). Click on add method, add property, add field or add event to add an item to your class. Type in a new name and then add values for the type, modifier and summary information which will show up in the comments. Click on the plus sign next to a named item to open up a new line for parameters.

It's all really easy to use but easier to show than to describe. For that reason I have created a 7 and a half minute demo of this on the MainFunction website that you can watch if you'd like.

This and the previous entries in this series may be found in one place at this article.

Comments (5)

  1. mashiharu says:

    The Class Designer is pretty, but in Visual Studio 2005 it it’s just too simple to to be of any practical use.  

    Look to Peter Coad’s/Borland’s Together for ideas.

  2. AlfredTh says:

    I believe that it is very practical for complete beginners. Those are the people it was added for actually. The simpleness it what makes it good for students and other beginners to use.

  3. mashiharu says:

    I agree with you.  It is very well executed (kudos to the team who wrote it) and probably very nice for beginners.  

  4. Rob Caron blogs about Jack Greenfield on Software Factories and DSLs.

    The Software Lifecycle blog…

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