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Visual Studio 2015 Archives - Falafel Software Blog

Breakpoints in Auto-Properties in Visual Studio 2015

By | Visual Studio | No Comments

This tip falls squarely into the category of simple, yet oh so useful. Visual Studio 2015 isn’t exactly new, but I am still discovering things that make it so nice for debugging. That’s where I’ve spent a lot of my time this week, and one thing that has saved me is using Actions on breakpoints to print messages to the console. And surprise! You can do the same thing even when using auto-properties in Visual Studio 2015 without backing fields.

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Selecting a Tab in Visual Studio Moves it to the First Position

Selecting a Tab in Visual Studio Moves it to First Position

By | Visual Studio | One Comment

Recently I noticed that selecting a tab in Visual Studio moves it to first position in the tab well.  This was pretty shocking to me because I was fairly certain that things where not always this way.  I verified there where not any updates to Visual Studio lately that may be the issue.  Then I looked at the Visual Studio Productivity Power Tools because I knew that this extension added capability to the tab well. Sure enough that extension was updated very recently.  So I did some digging into the options for this extension and found this: Apparently someone decided that…

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Mystery Solved: SQL Database Project Won’t Update using Schema Compare

By | Visual Studio | No Comments

I recently started using a SQL Database Project in Visual Studio 2015 to on a (pre-existing) complex database, and since the previous source control was pretty much nonexistent, it’s been a welcome change. Overall, the upgrade process went pretty well, with one exception that kind of screeched the whole thing to a halt. Since I’m sure I’ll run across the same issue again someday and by then I will have forgotten what the solution was, I’ll share it with you – and myself – in blog form.

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visual studio options

Based on your project, we have identified extensions you may find helpful

By | Visual Studio | 2 Comments

I love Visual Studio extensions and I’m always open to suggestions of new extensions to try. What I don’t like is hearing the same suggestion over and over. Or in this case, the suggestion of a suggestion. If you have recently installed or upgraded Visual Studio 2015 you might have seen this annoying message when opening HTML files: “Based on your project, we have identified extensions you may find helpful.” The folks at Microsoft were kind enough to provide a Don’t Show Again option next to the message. Unfortunately, clicking it doesn’t seem to work and the message appears again the next…

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Running Resource Intensive Jobs Using Azure Batch

By | .NET, Azure, Batch Processing, Microsoft, Visual Studio | No Comments

This is post 27 of 29 in the series “A Cloudy 29 Days of Microsoft Azure” Running Resource Intensive Jobs Using Azure Batch Azure Batch Services provide a framework for resource or computationally expensive jobs. When I say “computationally expensive”, think 3D rendering for Pixar, engineering stress analysis, or calculations for fluid dynamics. The DIY approach starts with “I’ll add a ‘for’ loop and kick off some background executables”. But once you start to scale in any direction, then you’re off to the races building infrastructure to handle generic plumbing needs like… Install apps and dependencies. Dispatch, queue and start…

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Scalable APIs with Azure API Apps

By | Azure | One Comment

This is post 19 of 29 in the series “A Cloudy 29 Days of Microsoft Azure” APIs are becoming essential features of many products and services, but managing everything that comes along with an API–Security, CORS, Scalability, etc.–can end up consuming more of your time than the development of the API itself. Fortunately, Microsoft Azure API Apps handle all of the “extra” things so you can focus on the API. API Apps are fairly new in the Azure family and as of late 2015, they have been promoted to a full App Service. At the same time, several features that…

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Fixes for common Node.js development issues in Windows

By | JavaScript, node.js, Visual Studio | 2 Comments

I remember when I first heard about Node.js. JavaScript on the server? Why would anyone want to do that? I hadn’t yet experienced the expressive power and conciseness of JavaScript, but once I did, I was hooked. Suddenly I was very interested in Node.js and started looking for a reason to jump in and start playing with it. Well, I recently got that chance, and while I am enjoying it very much, the start of my experience has had its share of bumps in the road. I’ll share a few of the problems I had and their workarounds or solutions. Install a version…

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Heart Rate Display with a Photon and a Microsoft Band

By | .NET, Blogs, C#, Fun, IoT, Microsoft Band, Mobile, Multi-Device, News, Photon, Visual Studio, Windows Phone | 4 Comments

Those who know me, know I love sensors, and doing things with sensors. I’ve published many posts on accessing the various sensors on the Microsoft Band: Accelerometer & Gyroscope, Ultraviolet, Skin Temperature, and Galvanic Skin Response. One subject that I haven’t gotten to is the heart rate sensor. I’ve also started to publish a few IoT posts. For this post, I thought it would be fun to integrate the Band’s heart rate sensor with a Particle Photon so you can visualize your heart rate with an RGB LED. The LED pulses at the same rate as your heart and will shift…

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Controlling an RGB LED on a Photon with a UWA Color Picker

By | .NET, Blogs, C#, Fun, IoT, Microsoft, Mobile, Multi-Device, News, Photon, Visual Studio, Windows Universal Apps | 3 Comments

The Particle Photon makes it easy to control the color of an RGB LED. There are a number of color picker controls you can use in Windows apps. I wanted to see how easy it was to hook a Photon RGB LED up to a Windows app color picker. It ended up being a snap by using the Particle cloud functions. In this project I wrote a simple UWA that calls a Particle cloud function called “setRGB” on my targeted Photon whenever I change the selected value on the color picker. Then I implemented an event handler on that Photon’s…

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IntelliTest – Day 28 – Visual Studio 2015

By | Testing, Visual Studio | 2 Comments

This is post 28 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” One of the drawbacks to unit testing has always been that you, as the developer, actually had to code the unit tests.  In complex scenarios writing unit tests to exercise all the different permutations of logic can become very tedious and time consuming.  I’ve often thought to myself, “Wouldn’t it be great if there was tooling built in to Visual Studio that could automatically generate a unit test suite?”.  In Visual Studio 2015, with the introduction of IntelliTest (formally known as “Smart Unit Tests”), this is…

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Generic UI Testing with Coded UI – Day 27 – Visual Studio 2015

By | .NET, C#, News, Testing | 6 Comments

This is post 27 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” As we all know, testing is one of the hardest parts of delivering quality testing. What I really mean by testing is Automated Testing. Sure, we all test our code as we develop, but having a comprehensive suite of tests to run as part of a CI Build or Deployment is key in delivering quality software efficiently. As part of Visual Studio 2010, Microsoft released a Coded UI Testing Framework that had lots of promise. There have been some updates since then, but IMHO…

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PerfTips – Day 25 – Visual Studio 2015

By | Visual Studio | One Comment

This is post 25 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” One of the coolest new enhancements to the debugging experience in Visual Studio 2015 is something called PerfTips. These tips provide timing information as you step through code in your application. Unless today is your first time debugging an application in Visual Studio, you’ve probably used a Stopwatch or Timer at some point in your career. In the past this was the simplest and quickest way to diagnose how long a block of code takes to execute. Not anymore. With PerfTips, this information is tracked and…

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Performance Diagnostics – Day 24 – Visual Studio 2015

By | Visual Studio | No Comments

This is post 24 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” Yesterday we took a quick look at the memory profiler included in Visual Studio. Today I’d like to introduce you to the other side of that coin, the performance diagnostic tools. You can monitor application performance as it runs using the new Diagnostic Tools window in Visual Studio 2015. This window shows memory and CPU utilization, among other things. While this may not seem extraodinary at first, it can actually be very useful when debugging your application. For starters, the CPU graph only displays…

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Memory Diagnostics – Day 23 – Visual Studio 2015

By | Visual Studio | One Comment

This is post 23 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” One of my favorite debugging features in Visual Studio 2015 is the integrated performance diagnostics tools. If you’ve ever used a commercial profiler like Telerik JustTrace or RedGate ANTS Performance Profiler then this will look familiar. While not as full-featured as the available commercial products, it’s nice to have such a tool integrated into the Visual Studio debugging experience. To use the new built-in memory profiler you don’t have to do anything special. Simply start a debugging session for your application and there should be a…

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Breakpoint Actions & Conditions – Day 22 – Visual Studio 2015

By | Visual Studio | No Comments

This is post 22 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” For .NET developers everywhere, a new version of Visual Studio brings with it the promise of increased productivity. I think that one of the best ways to increase productivity is to provide greater insight into how our applications behave, and that is why I am the most excited about the debugging improvements delivered in Visual Studio 2015. One such improvement to the debugging experience is how we apply conditions and actions to our breakpoints. When setting a breakpoint we see a new toolbar that allows…

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Live Code Analysis – Day 20 – Visual Studio 2015

By | Visual Studio | 3 Comments

This is post 20 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” Visual Studio 2015 features live code analysis, powered by Roslyn (.NET Compiler Platform). You can write your own analyers, or access existing analyzers as NuGet packages, including the (still prerelease) FxCop Analyzers published by the Roslyn/Microsoft team. One such third party set of rules and fixes is called Code Cracker. Also currently in pre-release, you can install the C# analyzers using:

Once installed, the light bulbs and quick actions will pick up the rules (over 20 different rules at the time of publication)…

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node.js integration in VS 2015 – Day 19 – 31 Days

By | node.js, Visual Studio, Web | 4 Comments

This is post 19 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” node.js Ask, “what is node.js?” and one will receive a range of answers with the typical being, Node.js is an open-source, cross-platform runtime environment for developing server-side web applications. — Wikipedia That really doesn’t tell one much and node.js’s usefullness is far broader so I’ll give a thumbnail working description. node.js applications are written in JavaScript or one of the supersets such as TypeScript which compile to JavaScript and are typically run within the node.js runtime. The node.js runtime is available on most OS’s…

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Exploring Multi-Photon and Particle Cloud Functionality with a Useless Machine

By | .NET, Blogs, C#, Fun, Hardware, IoT, Microsoft, Mobile, Multi-Device, News, Photon, Visual Studio, Web, Windows, Windows Universal Apps | 2 Comments

There are many ways for Particle Photons to interact with each other. Even more ways for other devices and apps to interact with Photons through the Particle Cloud. To explore these capabilities, I created a useless machine. My useless machine is made up of two Photons. Photon 1 “falafel_1” has a photo resistor and a green LED. Photon 2 “falafel_2” also has a photo resistor and a green LED. However, Photon 2 also has a servo motor and a second red LED. The servo motor is mounted so that when it is rotated to 90 degrees, it covers both photo…

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Shared Projects – Day 14 – VS 2015 Series

By | Visual Studio | 2 Comments

This is post 14 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats”   In this post we will learn about Shared Projects support in Visual Studio 2015. Shared Projects support started shipping in Visual Studio from Visual Studio 2013. At that time, to get Shared Projects as one of the option to create a project, we needed to install a separate extension. But, with Visual Studio 2015, support for Shared Projects ships right out of the box. Shared Projects are usually used share code across your solution while still having full API access of the platform…

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Expression Bodied Methods and Properties – Day 11 – VS 2015 Series

By | .NET, C#, C# 6, News | 2 Comments

This is post 11 of 31 in the series “31 Days of VS2015 Tricks and Treats” More Syntactical Sugar Syntactical Sugar comes in a wide range of flavors, nonetheless their goal is to decrease the level of noise in our code resulting in code where its intent is clear, easy to read, and distracting elements are minimized. Often they are tightly focused changes affecting a single code item.

This is a typical example. The left hand side type reference is redundant. Replacing it with var doesn’t make the code any less clear and makes it much easier to scan. Expression Bodied Methods…

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