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What's New in the Visual Studio Development Environment SDK

Visual Studio 2005
[This topic is pre-release documentation and is subject to change in future releases. Blank topics are included as placeholders.]

The Visual Studio 2005 Development Environment SDK supports many new and improved features to help you integrate the product into the Visual Studio integrated development environment (IDE).

New and Updated in the February 2007 "v4" Release

  • The Visual Studio 2005 SDK 4.0 now includes an SDK Browser to enhance the overall experience with Visual Studio extensibility development and to connect users with the community and online contents.

  • The Package Load Failure (PLF) Analyzer is now included with the SDK. The PLF Analyzer can do a complete analysis of package load failures and present the diagnostic information to the user.

  • A Toolbox Control Installer is now included with the SDK. This is a redistributable package that Toolbox component vendors can include in their Setup programs to simplify the deployment of their components. A new sample (Example.InstallToolboxControls) has been included to demonstrate this functionality.

  • The IronPython sample now recognizes external line mapping comments. These come in the form of #ExternalSource(“filename”, lineNumber) and are ended with a #EndExternalSource comment. This format matches the format of the C# compiler and is used for a similar purpose. Errors reported on lines in an ExternalSource region will include file name and line number information based on the ExternalSource comment. This enables scenarios such as ASP.NET code-behind where the source code from the Web page is inserted into generated code in another file.

  • Documentation improvements include a new Visual Studio SDK Guided Tour, new Visual Studio Package Load Failure Analyzer documentation, new Command Bar Combo Box code sample documentation, a new Toolbox Controls Installer tutorial, and considerations for developing and running solutions on Windows Vista.

New and Updated in the September 2006 "v3" Release

  • The IronPython Samples integrates the managed IronPython language into Visual Studio. It now includes limited support for Web site and Web application projects.

  • The managed package framework (MPF) now includes support for Web site projects and Web application projects.

  • The Visual Studio Library now includes support for Visual Studio hierarchies.

  • Managed-language parsing and lexing tools are now included in the \VisualStudioIntegration\Tools\Bin\ directory.

  • Many new Integration samples are included. By default, samples are installed in the \VisualStudioIntegration\Samples\ directory. Here are the new samples:





    Reference.ExtensibilityExplorer (C++)


    Example.CallBrowser (C#)


    Example.EditorWithToolBox (C#)


    Example.ManagedMyC (C#)


    Example.OptionsPage (C#)


    Example.RDTEventExplorer (C#)


    Example.SampleDocViewEditor (C#)


    Example.SvgViewer (C#)


    IronPython Web site project support (C#)


    SDK Reference


  • New Visual Studio SDK PowerToys are included:

    • Event Toaster

    • ExtensibilityExplorer

    • Indexed Find

    • Source Outliner

    • SuperDiff

    • Visual C++ Code Snippets

  • New videos demonstrate features in the Visual Studio SDK. For more information, see Videos.

New and Updated in the April 2006 "v2" Release

  • The IronPython Samples integrates the managed IronPython language into Visual Studio. It includes a project system, language service, tool window, and Windows Forms Designer.

  • Many new Integration samples are included. By default, samples are installed in the \Program Files\Visual Studio 2005 SDK\2006.04\VisualStudioIntegration\Samples\ directory. Here are the new samples:


























  • Support for Source Code Control (SCC) has been added to the MPF.

  • The Visual Studio SDK now includes the source code for the MPF.

  • The Visual Studio Library now includes mock implementations of nearly all Visual Studio interfaces. By default, they are located in \Program Files\Visual Studio 2005 SDK\2006.04\VisualStudioIntegration\Common\Source\CPP\VSL\MockInterfaces\.

  • VSCT, an XML-based replacement for CTC command table files, now is included as an "emerging technology." The new schema and compiler have not been thoroughly tested and are provided in preview form. For more information, see XML-Based Command Table Configuration (.Vsct) Files. The compiler is located by default in \Program Files\Visual Studio 2005 SDK\2006.04\EmergingTechnologies\VSCT\.

New and Updated in the October 2005 "v1" Release


  • The MPF classes replace the managed helper classes in VSIP SDK 2003 Extras.

    They provide an abstraction for frequently used interfaces and types in Visual Studio, and they reduce the amount of work necessary to create a Visual Studio package (VSPackage) in managed code. For more information, see Migrating VSPackages to Visual Studio 2005 and Managed Package Framework Classes.

  • Language services, which supply features such as syntax highlighting and IntelliSense support, now can be created in managed code with MPF. For more information, see Managed-Code Language Services with the MPF.

  • The Visual Studio Library (VSL) C++ template classes provide default implementations for frequently used interfaces in Visual Studio. For more information, see Using the Visual Studio Library C++ Template Classes.

  • New interfaces give you greater control of text fonts, colors, and gradients.

    You can control text fonts and colors from a property page or in accordance with user settings. For more information, see Fonts and Colors and Gradients in the UI.

  • VSPackages can be programmed to allow users to save and retrieve their settings by using Import and Export Settings in the IDE.

  • System Definition Model (SDM) is used to create models of distributed systems by defining system building blocks and capturing data pertinent to the development, deployment, and operations of the system.

    Using SDM, vendors, system integrators, and administrators can create a live, dynamic blueprint of an entire system. The Distributed System Designers in Visual Studio Team Edition for Architects use SDM to model and validate distributed applications for deployment to logical data center configurations. This SDK enables you to extend the base set of models provided with the Distributed System Designers to support richer application system and data center models.

    For more information, see Using the System Definition Model (SDM) SDK.


    In the current release of the Distributed System Designers, SDM-authored models are supported for modeling only. There is no support for generating code or synchronizing code from the models.

  • Data Designer Extensibility (DDEX) SDK provides documentation, samples, and resources to help you implement Data Designer Extensibility (DDEX) providers and Data Source Reference (DSRef) objects.

    DDEX providers enable you to expose third-party data source objects in Visual Studio. DSRef objects enable you to transfer metadata from Server Explorer or another data source to the clipboard or your own application.

  • Debugger integration includes COM interop support.

    The Text Interpreter sample has been updated for Visual Studio 2005. For more information, see Visual Studio Debugger Extensibility.

  • Visual Studio Team System can be extended by creating custom test types. For more information, see Visual Studio Team Edition for Testers.

  • Contained languages support lets you support multiple programming languages in a single document, each with support for IntelliSense and other editor features. For example, the Visual Studio Web project system uses contained languages support to support both markup and .NET-languages like Visual C# and Visual Basic in a single .aspx file. For more information, see Contained Languages.

  • Source control now can be integrated into Visual Studio as a VSPackage, which allows the source control package to control the entire user interface (UI) for source control.

    For more information, see Creating a Source-Control VSPackage.


  • New samples have been added, most of which include detailed implementation notes, unit tests, and comments. For a list of samples, see Visual Studio Integration Samples.

  • Some samples have not yet been updated. Those samples are located by default in \Program Files\Visual Studio 2005 SDK\<build number>\VisualStudioIntegration\Archive\.


  • The documentation has been reorganized to match the rest of the Visual Studio SDK and to group topics you are likely to read while working on a particular technology.

  • New walkthroughs have been added.

  • Some documentation has not yet been updated to reflect all the changes in the software.

See Also