"How Do I’ Topics Debut

Another vector for finding solutions in the SDK is to use the How Do I topic that we have designed for the latest release of Visual Studio. Now you can use the TOC, search, index, or How Do I to navigate the large doc set that is the Visual Studio 2005 SDK. Here is a snapshot pulled from the docset for your review:

   How Do I? (Visual Studio SDK)

How Do I is your gateway to key topics about creating Visual Studio 2005 solutions with the Visual Studio 2005 SDK. The essential information on working with the SDK is listed in this topic. The links (which don't work in this Web preview) provide pointers to important procedure-based Help pages.


Visual Studio 2005 feature


For more information

Best Practices

Create secure products by understanding security vulnerabilities.

Best Practices for Security in VS SDK


VSPackages are the building blocks of the Visual Studio 2005 integrated development environment (IDE). VSPackages, which are application modules, are the main implementers of the Visual Studio 2005 extensibility architecture.


Tool windows

The Solution Explorer and Output window are both examples of tool windows, as opposed to document windows like a code editor. Your VSPackage can create entirely new tool windows.

Document and Tool Windows

Menu items and toolbar buttons

Menu items and toolbar buttons are ways users can execute commands in Visual Studio 2005. You can add new commands to existing menus and toolbars or new ones.

Menu and Toolbar Commands


The toolbox contains components you can drag to an editor window, such as buttons to a Windows Forms Designer window. You can add your own components to the toolbox and create new tabs to arrange categories of components.

Toolbox Overview

Properties window

The Properties window lets the user get and set property values for objects in the IDE, like components in a Windows Forms Designer window or projects in the Solution Explorer. Your VSPackage can expose its own objects to the Properties window.

Providing Properties Window Support

Tools Options pages

Users configure aspects of the IDE through the property pages on the Tools Options dialog box. You can let users configure your VSPackage by adding your own Tools Options property pages.

User Configuration and Settings

Projects and Solutions

Just like a C# .csproj project file contains information about building an assembly – the source files it contains and the options used to build it – your VSPackage can define its own project type for storing source code or other data under your control.

Projects and Solutions


Visual Studio Hierarchies and Selection


Extending Managed Projects


Visual Studio 2005 has a powerful code editor that your VSPackage can use, monitor, and extend for use with text files. You can also provide custom editors and designers like the Windows Form Designer.

Editors Overview

Language Services

Visual Studio 2005 supports several native-code and managed-code languages and you can add more. You can implement a language service to add your own language, including features like syntax coloring, IntelliSense, and outlining. You can also implement a custom debug engine so users can use the Visual Studio 2005 debugger with your language.

Language Services


Visual Studio Debugging SDK

Source Control

If you develop a source-control system, integrating it into Visual Studio 2005 makes it easier for developers to do their day-to-day work. Visual Studio 2005 SDK includes two source-control interfaces you can use: the source control plug-in interface (formerly known as the MSSCCI API) is easier to develop for but less flexible than the more comprehensive source control package interface.

Source Control (VSIP)


Creating a Source Control Plug-in


Creating a Source Control Package

Context-Sensitive Help

Visual Studio 2005 supports context-sensitive help, including support for F1 help and the Dynamic Help window. You can add context-sensitive help for your VSPackage’s editors, tool windows, projects, languages, and so on.

Help Authoring and Integration Guide

Data Sources

If you have a data source that Visual Studio 2005 does not natively support, use the Data Designer Extensibility (DDEX) SDK to develop a custom data provider. Data providers are what Visual Studio 2005 uses to support features like the Server Explorer and other data-design-time tools.

Welcome to DDEX

Enjoy and let us know what you think.

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