VSX Arcana

Covering the many topics of Visual Studio Extensibility

Creating a VSIX Deployable C++ project template.

The problem: Recently I had a customer inquire about an issue they had encountered with a custom C++ project template they had created. Using a vstemplate based project template, they were able to successfully create a C++ project, but noticed a discrepancy in the project’s General Property Page. Specifically, the “Target Platform”, and “Windows SDK… Read more

Debugging F1 Help Context with the Debug Help Context ToolWindow extension

Every once in a while I have a need to watch what’s being pushed as the active F1 context to debug or troubleshoot F1 Context Help.  The Debug Help Context ToolWindow is quite useful for diagnosing possible issues with your F1 help context keywords, but requires a bit of insider knowledge or bing/google super powers… Read more

How to add a custom Paste Special command to the VS Editor menu

  When editing code with the Visual Studio Editor, you may have come across a very useful feature that allows for copying JSON or XML data to the clipboard, and then pasting new classes into your code based upon the structure of the data. For example, consider the following JSON data: {“employees”:[ {“firstName”:”John”, “lastName”:”Deere”, “age”:”25″},… Read more

The VSX Template Wizard

Over the years, I’ve built more than a few project templates with wizard support. Usually for experimental purposes to help answer customer inquiries concerning templates and wizards. Lately, I’ve found myself regularly following steps similar to what I outlined in my previous blog entry:    Creating a VSIX Deployable Project (or Item) Template with Custom… Read more

Creating a VSIX Deployable Project (or Item) Template with Custom Wizard Support

Every now and then, I get an interesting question or problem from a customer (thanks Uma) that highlights a need for some additional documentation, or at the least a sample or walkthrough to illustrate how to get from A to Z. In this instance, the question was “How do you localize a project (or item)… Read more

VS 2013 SDK Samples released

It took a bit longer than we’d have liked, but the VS team has finally gotten around to porting and posting the original VS SDK samples from VS 2010, over to VS 2013. Below is a listing of the samples and where they can be downloaded from. Build Progress Bar – VS 2013 A Visual… Read more

VS 2013 Isolated Shell generates an error when attempting to load a custom project type

After adding support for a custom project type to a VS 2013 Isolated Shell project, you may encounter the following error dialog.     This error message is displayed when the the isolated shell instance loads the wrong version of msbuild assemblies. In particular, the isolated shell’s .exe.config file (in my specific case, my MyShellony.exe.config)… Read more

Building a VSIX Deployable Single File Generator

A recent post on the VS Extensibility Forum related to deploying a Single File Generator (also called a “Custom Tool”), inspired me to write a new VSIX Deployable Single File Generator Sample to the MSDN Code gallery. The existing samples were written a few releases back, and none of them take advantage of VSIX deployment…. Read more

How to change solution icon in the Visual Studio Isolated Shell

This question posted to the VS Extensibility Forum recently caught my attention. Initially, I initially suspected this would have a simple answer, but it turns out the shell pulls this icon directly from a resource in msenv.dll. After examining the underlying IVsHierarchy implementation of the root solution node, it looked like the icon could be… Read more