Visual Studio Editor


Manifest - Contains name and version, list of any other suppoert assemblies that it may need.
- list of types
- list of resources
- map to connect public types
- list of referenced assemblies
- you can examine the manifest using the ILDasm tool (double click the second line).


(View > Other Windows)


You can use the #Region and #EndRegion directives


My Profile - This pane lets you configure the editor with your preferences.
Object Explorer - Displays all the members of a particular object
Solution Explorer - Provides an averview of the solution including all projects and items
Class View - presents a list of all the classes contained in your solution
Dynamic Help - Automatically looks up all kinds of topics related to the currently selected item. This is more helpful than just searching for a word using the normal help
Component Tray - Displays components that are not visible at run time, such as timer controls, context menus.
Server Explorer -
Output Window - use System.Diagnostics.Debug.Write()
Task Item - Contain a list of things you have to take of - syntax errors, upgrade to do's
Command Window - Enter commands such as File.AddNewProject



Custom Bitmap images
Light Grey - 215,215,215
Dark Red - 128,0,0




use Imports to import a namespace without having to fully qualify all the items



Change default Option Strict On



When you install Visual Studio you are asked which settings you want to use
You can change your settings by clicking (Tools > Import and Export Settings)
You can export your current settings, import settings from a file or reset all the settings to the default.



Strings

Str() - converts a number fo a text representation
Val() - converts a text representation to a number



If you have a Exit Function without assigning a value to the function name then the value returned is the default value appropriate to the datatype.



Pin Windows

You have the option of keeping several windows open at the same time by clicking their pintag icons again
However some will be combined on the side with a set of tabs at the bottom.




If you want the window you are dragging to be linked to another windows by tabs, drag the windows directly on to the title bar of the other window. A tab for each window will appear at the bottom.


There are two types of windows. Tool windows and Document windows. You can manipulate and arrange Tool windows in various ways dock / hide / show / move etc. You can have a group of them displayed in a tabbed format.
Only Tool windows in floating mode can be moved outside of the application frame.


You can have multiple instances of some Tool windows (Window > New Window) (eg Web Browser)



Document Windows

These are the windows that you use for editing an item in your project. All document windows are not dockable and are unique to a specific project. How these windows appear in the IDE will depend on the interface mode you have set.
You can split these windows by grabbing the upper right corner and dragging downward



Tool Windows


Visual Studio.NET includes a mechanism for hiding and displaying tools quickly, called auto-hide. This feature is available for most tool windows. To auto-hide a tool window, click the pushpin button in the top right corner, so it points to the left.
The benefit of having auto hide windows is that they free up space in your Visual Studio, but are also very quickly to access.



Properties


This displays all the attributes associated to classes (ie textboxes or forms). Once this window is visible, you cna either view the list alphabetically or categorized by attribute. Properties within the window can be selected either from a list or by clicking a button to bring up a dialog box.
Using the Object drop-down list is an easy way to switch between objects in yoru program. You can also switch between objects on a form by clicking each object.


same as F4


Shortcut Keys

(Ctrl + Shift + B) - Builds a program
(Ctrl + K, Ctrl + D) - Reformat document/module (Edit > Advanced > Format Document)
(Ctrl + K, Ctrl + F) - Reformat selection (Edit > Advanced > Format Selection)



Things to Remember

To prevent a window docking while you drag it, hold down Ctrl
If the properties window is not visible, click (View > Properties window) or press F4
You can move a dockable window without snapping it into place by pressing the Ctrl key while dragging
By default, Visual Studio.NET saves your projects in the Visual Studio Projects folder and gives each project its own folder
Visual Studio.NET automatically saves your project before it starts the compiler and displays any forms. This is a safety feature that will prevent the loss of any data should anything unexpected happen during complilation.



What is .NET ?

The Microsoft Visual Studio.NET development environment contains everything you need to build and customise your Microsoft Windows applicatios. Visual Studio .NET is Microsoft's integrated development environment (IDE) for creating, documenting, running and debugging programs written in a variety of .NET languages.
The .NET platform is a set of development tools and operational systems used to build, expose and consume XML web services.
Visual Studio .NET also offers editing tools for manipulating several types of files.
The .NET framework is a library of classes that are used to build Windows applications
This .NET framework is Microsoft's latest initiative to simplify the development of modern applications.
There are two main components to the .NET framework; the CLR (Common Language RunTime) and the hierarchical Class Library
.NET is a software platform. It is a language neutral environment for writing programs that can easily interoperate
The components that make up the .NET platfrom are collectively called the .NET framework


Managed code is code that targets .NET and which contains certain extra information, "Meta data" to describe itself. Whilst both managed and unmanaged code can run in the runtime, only managed code contains the information that allows the runtime envoronemnt to guarantee, for instance safe execution and interoperability
Managed C++ cannot have multiple inheritance


.NET Languages

There are three core Microsoft.NET langauges C#, VB.Net and Managed C++.
The following concepts are supported by all of these .NET langauges.
Namespaces
Interfaces
Encapsulation
Inheritance
Polymorphism
Exception Handling


Common Language Runtime (CLR)

The CLR uses something calls Common Type System (CTS) to strictly enforce type-safety. This ensures that all classes are compatible with each other, be describing types in a common way. CTS defines how types work within the runtime (their declaration and usage), which enables types in one language to interoperate with types in another language, inclugin cross-language exception handling
The CLR is a run-time execution engine that is responsible for executing code within the .NET environment, providing services such as security, memory management and remoting.
Code that is run by the CLR is known as managed code; Code that executes outside the control of the CLR is unmanaged code.
All Microsoft Visual Basic and C# code is managed. It is possible to write both managed and unmanaged code is Visual C++ and to have both types of code working together in the same program.


The Common Language Specification (CLR) is a set of rules and constraints that compiler and library writers need to follow to be sure that the languages and code they produce will interoperate with other .NET langauges
.NET resources are handled differently from Win32


Intermediate Langauge (IL)

All .NET langauges compile down into an intermediate form called Intermediate Language (IL). IL can be thought of as a type of object-orientated assembler langauge.
It allows you to do cross-langauge object-orientated programming easily calling member in Managed C++ classes from Visual Basic and vice versa and even inheriting from a Managed C++ class in Visual Basic


Soap

The Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) provides a way to call methods using XML and HTTP. The details of the method you want to call and any arguments you need to supply are formatted as an XML SOAP packet. The Server parses the contents of the packet, makes the call and sends back a reply packet, which is also in XML. SOAP relies on W3C schemas to define the content of SOAP packets, and the use of schemas makes it possible to define and pass over structured data.
There are SOAP bindings to many languages and a growing number of applications are using SOAP to provide language and platform independent access to services.
You can think of SOAP as the Internet's application-to-application protocol enabling applications to communicate over the existing Internet infrastructures.


The compiler always attaches metadata to the output code to describe it, and the CLR uses the metadata to control the loading and execution of the code. You can also attach metadata to code using attributes, special syntax elements that can be attached to classes and class members


Reflection

You can enquire about attributes at runtime using reflection
Reflection is a feature that allows a programmer to find out information about the objects they are using, such as what class they belong to, what methods they support and what metadata is attahced to them.


You can use the attributes that are predefined by the .NET framework. You can use these attributes in two ways, by editing the AssemblyInfo.ccp file that comes with a "Managed C++ Project" ro by attaching attributes to managed elements in your code.


XML

Extensible Markup Language. This is a text-based language much like HTML, that defines rules for creating custom HTML like tags that describe themselves and the data they contain (meta data)



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