Visual Studio 2012 was released Q4 of last year and already we have a replacement; Visual Studio 2013.
Download and Installation
On the page, select ‘Visual Studio Ultimate 2013 Preview’ ‘Install Now’. You download a small 1MB file which downloads and installs the whole IDE. I installed it in a VM of Windows 8.1. It took a while, around 30 minutes.
When installation is complete you are required to sign into your Microsoft account (or ‘Visual Studio’ account), apparently Visual Studio syncs with other devices (awesome)!
Next, you choose the theme. I like the new grey Visual Studio 2012 theme but if you prefer you can choose the old Visual Studio 2010 blue theme.
Choose your development environment (C# for me) and click start. The welcome screen looks very familiar:
There is an update to install as soon as you install the ide.
Let’s start a new Console app. The first change you notice is the reference counting. Each class and method has a little indicator above it telling you how many times it is being referenced.
When you hover over the reference indicator it shows you where it is being referenced. In the following screenshot, it’s the constructor.
I now reference the Play class from my main method:
It’s kinda cool. You can now see, at a glance, which of your classes are heavily referenced and which are not. One could use this tool to focus your unit testing efforts on classes that are relatively heavily referenced.
Return Values Debugging
Return values in the Visual Studio debugger. The Autos window displays return types and values for methods.
(You must start the debugger and hit a breakpoint to be able to see the Auto window.)
I honestly don’t use the auto window, I probably should. I didn’t know Visual Studio 2012 lacked this feature but it’s nice to now have it. My auto window is now open and I’ll use it when I am debugging.
Edit and Continue for 64-bit apps
Have you ever received the ‘Changed cannot be made to 64-bit applications’ message? I know I have. Apparently Visual Studio 2013 supports this.
Peak Definition and Scrollbar enhancements
I love these two features of Productivity Power Tools. It’s now in Visual Studio natively.
See what else is new or different in Visual Studio 2013
See what else is new in .NET 4.5.1