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What's New in Domain-Specific Language Tools

Updated: July 2008

Domain-Specific Language Tools has added some new features in Visual Studio 2008 which will make it easier to implement and distribute a domain-specific language.

The following features are new in Visual Studio 2008:

  • A domain path editor makes it easier to specify paths to elements and connections in the model. In previous versions of Domain-Specific Language Tools, you needed to formulate the path by hand, using a complex and error-prone syntax. Now, whenever you need to specify a path in the UI, you can bring up a tree view of the model or the node of the model that is relevant to the context.

  • The Domain-Specific Language Tools runtime is now part of the Visual Studio 2008 release, so you do not need to include it when you deploy your domain-specific language to other computers. For more information on deploying a domain-specific language, see Walkthrough: Deploying a Domain-Specific Language.

  • It is not necessary to have administrative privileges to compile, execute, or debug a Domain-Specific Language Tools solution. For more information about RANU (run as normal user), see the topic Run as Normal User (RANU).

The following RANU changes are specific to DSL:

  • DSL package assemblies and DSL definition assemblies are no longer put in the GAC.

  • If you delete one of these assemblies from disk without unregistering it, you will get a Package Load Failure the next time you attempt to run the application. You can resolve this problem by deleting the relevant GUID (the one referred to in the error message) under the Packages key of the experimental hive, or by resetting the experimental hive.

  • You must modify the project file for domain-specific languages created in Visual Studio 2005 or in Visual Studio 2008 Beta 1 in the following ways:

  • Add the /ranu switch to the command line

  • RegisterWithCodeBase=true

  • GacTargetOutput=false

  • Domain-specific languages deployed by a DSL setup project will still be put in the GAC.

  • Deployed domain-specific languages should be run as an administrative user.




July 2008

Rewrote and refactored project.

Content bug fix.