Some of DslFactory’s work explained : (1/4) the VSX Day

As I told you in my previous post, the DslFactory community created a lot of content about DslTools and more generally Visual Studio Extensibility. This content is freely available, although written in French. Most of it is very interesting: For instance, DslFactory organized, on October 16th 2007, in Paris, along with Microsoft France, a complete day about Visual Studio customizations and extensibility named 9french) VSX Day 07.


The VSX Day 07 explained

The VSX Day, that is not less than 19 sessions whose content was filmed and is available as WebCasts (in French, of course) on Microsoft France Vision site.

These sessions are organized as a pathways, illustrated as a metro map, enabling us to discover the visual studio extensibility in a kind of progressive way. Starting from the Visual Studio customizations we ended the day by the the VS 2008 Shell, going through VSI, Snippets, VS Templates, GAX, Automation by macros and DTE, Add-ins, a VS SDK's Tour, Packages, DSLs, advanced DSLs such as bidirectional ones, with many demos, including Alain Metge brilliant Candle, and the WCF Designer. During the full day we also incrementally  demoed a sample which was the pretext to navigate through these technologies : The creation of clickable images from class diagrams, and other DSL diagrams, and their inclusion in a Reference documentation thru add-in to SandCastle, and SandCastleHelpFileBuilder. Quite a lot of information for the attendees (the legend tells they would have been 200 🙂 )

The VSX Day web casts

The Webcasts sessions of the day VSX Day can be found at the "Vision" Microsoft France:

Note that these links will take you to lists of more detailed WebCasts (it takes a little digging to find some WebCasts for the moment)



The VSX Slides

After a short introduction, DslFactory presented the issue of industrializing reference materials - which we serve as a leitmotif of this day - and the extension of Visual Studio responding.

The different extensibility scalability were then presented, from the most accessible to most powerful:

  1. The simple Visual Studio customization templates, wizards, and the use of GAX Guidances we already provide significant opportunities
  2. Then came the time to start coding with automation by Macros and Add-In
  3. Then, the Tour of the "Visual Studio SDK" allowed us to quickly learn about all these technologies most of which are ignored, and what they can do for us.
  4. A special focus was then carried out on some of these technologies:

  5. The afternoon was entirely devoted to the Domain Specific Languages (DSL) and their implementation in Visual Studio Opens via DSL Tools. Beginners, as confirmed users have, hopefully, been able to find answers to their questions

  6. We ended the day by lifting the veil on scalability VS 2008, and providing useful links

If you are interested in a particular subject, you can download a summary as a . pps file, and click subway stations. You will be taken directly to the corresponding powerpoint presentations.


The code samples

Associated with each session, DslFactory also provides the code of the demoed samples:

  • 1. 1. Leitmotif: Demoed by Sebastian, with 3 examples. Chm before and after using SandCastle Add-ins and SandCastleHelpFileBuilder (998 kb)

  • 2. 2. Customizing VS:

    • The demonstration by Alain on Visual Studio Policy: (2.14 MB).
    • Moreover, the DSL "DSL4VSI" that Alain created to generate Visual Studio Installer (VSI) capable of installing 'Code Snippet', 'VSTemplate', 'Macro Project', 'Addin', 'Control Toolbox' is available on CodePlex in

  • 3. 3. Automation API and Add-ins.

    • The Visual Studio solution that I used inmy demos on the implementation of ProjectModel (list of projects and files), CoreModel (enumeration of windows) CodeModel (dynamic creation of a solution containing a draft containing serializable class): (559 kb)

    • The source code and binaries for the Add-in for Sebastien to generate clickable iamges from ClassDiagrams: (25.3 kb)

  • 4. VS SDK Tour has been a Live demo, which you can find in the WebCast.


For next demos, except the 6.1, you must install the VS SDK 4.0 for Visual Studio 2005

  • 4.5. Regarding the demonstration associated with the presentation of the discovery of the packages, the archive (7.81 MB) includes the 8 step of building the ReferenceDocumentationGenerator package to export clickable images
    corresponding to ClassDiagram and DSL, and choose Export options, as well as to export diagrams.

  • 5.2. Sebastien's Demo on creating a DSL for geometric shapes includes 7 steps, the establishment of the Domain Model with the DSL Tools for deployment. These steps have been grouped in 5.2-VSX-Day-solutions . zip (8 MB)

  • 6.1. 6.1. Session advanced customization aspects of the properties window with the concepts of the System.ComponentModel namespace by Alain are available in ( 53 KO)

  • 6.2. The demonstration of the session Using the Domain Model is in this archive: (755 KB). It is also part of the archive of the sesssion 4.5 Packages on which it is the 8th step.

  • 6.3. The amendment to DSL Sebastian him for advanced functions such as the Model <-> Code bidirectionality is, also in (2.90 MB)

That's it for an overview of the VSX Day

In my next post, I'll talk a little more about some Labs and Workshop that DslFactory produced to learn DSL Tools.

Comments (1)
  1. This month’s letter includes a summary of what our plans are for upcoming new versions of the VS SDK,

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