A Chance to Influence the MSDN Visual Studio Documentation (Help System)

The docs team here at Microsoft has created a new survey to solicit your opinion on the help system found in the MSDN technical library. This the same information you see if you press F1 in Visual Studio to get help on the IDE or your development language. I know the people who create and process this survey, and I can assure that any feedback you give will be processed and carefully considered. The team is strongly driven by input from our users, and this is your chance to have your say. I’ve taken the survey myself, and found that it consists of about 10 pages with an average of 2 or 3 questions per page. I didn’t spend much time contemplating each question, and was therefore able to finish the survey in about 5 minutes.


Thank you for your input!

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Comments (11)
  1. Ron McMahon says:

    Call me blind, Charlie, but I can’t find a survey on the page you link to…

  2. Tim Rourke says:

    The survey link is the same as the "The MSDN Library page on Visual Studio 2010 Beta 2" link…

  3. ccalvert says:

    Sorry about the bad link. After you have taken the survey then the original link resolves to the page shown above, which is how I got mixed up.

  4. Tim Rourke says:

    Happens to me all the time. 🙂

    Thanks for updating the link!

  5. Mike says:

    Sorry, I was going to fill out the survey but I accidentally hit F1 and timed out waiting for help to open.

  6. The search functionality in Visual Studio 2008 help is buggy. It consistently find gobs of pages that don’t even contain the key words I have searched for. I just did a search for Inline Function C#. There is no sutch thing as an inline function in C# but yet it finds 500 results. When I open the top 3 results they all relate to SQL Server and none of them contain my search text "C#". What’s up with that??? How is it finding pages that don’t even contain my search words. Just for the record Google does not have this problem and produces loads of accurate results for this exact query so I know it can be done.

    Charlie, Thanks for posting this survey. Maybe this long standing bug will finally get some attention.

  7. Here is an extreme example of a buggy search in Visual Studio 2008 Help. I did a search for the following giberish:

    394nf3 49fn34f xas89ijn sql lx3zxm4z

    Google finds nothing for this search because it’s total nonsence. However, Visual Studio Help finds 500 matches. There is no way that even 1 of those 500 pages has anything to do with my search. It’s like the search results are completely random and have nothing to do with my search words.

  8. Lawrence Brown says:

    I wish Microsoft Help was like this: http://www.delphibasics.co.uk

    As a former Delphi programmer, I have been very grateful for Delphi Basics.  It’s the fastest way to find answers to most problems and has proven to be invaluable to me.  Now that I’m using C#, I miss having such a resource.  

  9. Matt says:

    Greg I just did the same search and similar searches and came up with 0 results. (VS2008). Maybe you need updates or something?

  10. Greg VanMullem says:


    Something must be different about your install. I’m configured to use local help first and then Internet based help. That could be the difference. Try the following junk searchs. They also return 500 worthless results.

    3q4c8t u21348 int 9g2c1 389r0q4rv 0rgq

    45muvu245 uymbmm u0345uy vb b9045y

    Hey Charlie! Can you please run these searches and confirm the bug?

  11. Please allow me to increase the font size of the Visual Studio help browser / web browser.

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