Visual Studio 2008 Highlights
If you work with Microsoft technologies, most likely a portion of your development effort is taking place within Visual Studio, Microsoft’s flagship developer environment. Microsoft products such as SharePoint, Commerce Server, Exchange Server, BizTalk Server, Office, SQL Server, CRM, Windows Mobile Devices, and even the Xbox all support .NET development, and most have deep integration with Visual Studio.
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…With the release of Visual Studio 2008, Microsoft has further enhanced the environment, and added support for new features. We’ll take a look at these enhancements, broken down into four groups: Environment, Designers, Language, and Products.
One of the biggest complaints Microsoft received from customers upgrading from Visual Studio 2003 to Visual Studio 2005 was the lack of backward compatibility. Existing projects had to be upgraded to the new Visual Studio 2005 and .NET 2.0 formats, and could not be opened again in Visual Studio 2003. This made it more difficult for organizations who wanted to incrementally upgrade their environments. Microsoft took notice and made sure that the transition from Visual Studio 2005 to Visual Studio 2008 was less painful by making the build system compatible with the .NET Frameworks 2.0, 3.0 and 3.5. Further, existing solutions can continue to be developed in Visual Studio 2008 while still using the .NET Framework 2.0.
Until now, developers independently determined their code’s complexity and maintainability. This lack of standardized metrics often resulted in unwieldy code and less than ideal productivity. To help address this problem, Visual Studio 2008 Team System Development Edition includes Code Metrics support. You can opt to analyze a single project or an entire solution, and the Code Metrics Results window displays key metrics such as the maintainability index, cyclomatic complexity, depth of inheritance, class coupling and the number of lines of code.
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