Microsoft Updates Power Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio

Microsoft announced this week it is shipping an updated version of its Productivity Power Tools for Visual Studio 2010, a set of extensions for the company's premier programming environment that's designed to streamline developer productivity, Microsoft Visual Studio 2010.

The new release adds several new features and patches a number of bugs.

"With this release, we've introduced four brand new extensions and we've fixed many of the bugs that were reported in the previous version," Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) spokesperson Sean Laberee said in a post to the Microsoft Visual Studioblog Sunday.

"The number one feature request by far has been the ability to turn off the individual extensions in the Productivity Power Tools [so] in this release, we've added an extension which adds a category to Tools Options which allows you to toggle the extensions on/off and provides a single place to find the options for a particular extension," the post continued.

The update also adds a new tool window called the Solution Navigator that enables a developer to expand Visual Basic and C# programming code in order to peruse their classes. Solution Navigator also provides search, filter, and view functions.

"In other words, it merges functionality from Solution Explorer, Class View, Object Browser, Call Hierarchy, Navigate To, and Find Symbol References all into one tool window," said Laberee.

A third new tool window, called Quick Access, lets developers quickly find features and perform tasks within Microsoft Visual Studio 2010's integrated development environment (IDE). Quick Access enables users to access commands on the main menu and context menus, as well as showing tool windows, jumping to options pages, and creating a set of tasks.

Finally, the Power Tools add an extension for automatic brace completion in Visual Basic and C# programming.

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010, along with Version 4 of the .NET Framework, shipped in April.

Developers who already have the Productivity Power Tools installed, will be notified of the availability of the update the next time they start Microsoft Visual Studio, Laberee added. Others can download the new Productivity Power Tools here.


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