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General, Environment, Options Dialog Box

Use this page of the Options dialog box to change settings for the integrated development environment (IDE). You can access the Options dialog box by clicking Options on the Tools menu and then selecting the General page in the Environment folder. If this page does not appear in the list, select Show all settings in the Options dialog box.

NoteNote

The dialog boxes and menu commands you see might differ from those described in Help depending on your active settings or edition. To change your settings, choose Import and Export Settings on the Tools menu. For more information, see Working with Settings.

items shown in Window menu

Customizes the number of windows that appear in the Windows list of the Window menu. Type a number between 1 and 24. By default, the number is 10.

items shown in recently used lists

Customizes the number of most recently used projects and files that appear on the File menu. Type a number between 1 and 24. By default, the number is 10. This is an easy way to retrieve recently used projects and files.

Automatically adjust visual experience based on client performance

Specifies whether Visual Studio sets the adjustment to the visual experience automatically or you set the adjustment explicitly. This adjustment may change the display of colors from gradients to flat colors, or it may restrict the use of animations in menus or popup windows.

Enable rich client experience

Enables the full visual experience of Visual Studio, including gradients and animations. Clear this option when using Remote Desktop connections or older graphics adapters, because these features may have poor performance in those cases. This option is available only when you clear the Automically adjust visual experience based on client option.

Use hardware graphics acceleration if available

Uses hardware graphics acceleration if it is available, rather than software acceleration.

Show status bar

Displays the status bar. The status bar is located at the bottom of the IDE window and displays information about the progress of ongoing operations.

Close button affects active tool window only

Specifies that when the Close button is clicked, only the tool window that has focus is closed and not all of the tool windows in the docked set. By default, this option is selected.

Auto Hide button affects active tool window only

Specifies that when the Auto Hide button is clicked, only the tool window that has focus is hidden automatically and not all of the tool windows in the docked set. By default, this option is not selected.

Restore File Associations

Registers file types that are typically associated with Visual Studio. Registration causes Windows to display the correct icons in Windows Explorer, and to recognize Visual Studio as the correct application for opening these file types.

This option can be useful if you have two different versions of Visual Studio installed on the same computer, and you later uninstall one of the versions. After uninstalling, the icons for Visual Studio files no longer appear in Windows Explorer. In addition, Windows no longer recognizes Visual Studio as the default application for editing these files. This option restores those associations.

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