Microsoft has released Visual Studio Community 2013, a copy of Visual Studio Professional that is free to use for users in a non-corporate setting. While the Express editions remain available this new version of Visual Studio provides developers with a single environment that can target traditional Windows applications, the Web, Android, and iOS.
Visual Studio "14" is improving the web development experience through a series of changes throughout the package. These changes should benefit developers across a variety of tasks: JSON editing, HTML editing and the use of templating packages, and managing code in the editor.
Visual Studio’s support for new languages is quite powerful, but few people have the skill and determination to take advantage of it. David Golub, who brought CMake support to Visual Studio, is one such person.
The fourth preview of Visual Studio "14" integrates several new features, including improvements to the debugger, integration of a new high-performance 64-bit JIT compiler, and ASP.NET vNext. Alongside these changes are several rough edges that reinforces the notion this software is still under active development.
The .NET Micro Framework has a new release which adds support for Visual Studio 2013 and Visual Studio "14". This Framework powers devices that Microsoft intends to build the "Internet of Things" and similar hardware-centric devices like the Raspberry Pi.
Npgsql 2.2.0 comes as a feature packed release. The release adds VS Data Designer support, several Entity Framework-specific improvements and support for the Postgres 9.4 feature, the JSONB datatype.
The forthcoming release of VS “14” has not diminished Microsoft's continuing efforts to update the current VS2013. A fourth update for VS2013 has been released via a CTP, and is set to bring fixes and improvement to a couple of areas.
The Bing Developer Assistant is a new plugin for C# developers to enable effective searches for code samples from within Visual Studio. Rather than requiring a context switch to a web browser, the plugin lets developers make code searches while they work.
Running cloud-based always-on systems is inherently complex. Microsoft recently experienced a 5 hour outage with Visual Studio Online, rendering their service unusable to developers. Microsoft's Brian Harry has provided a candid retrospective on what went wrong and how his team his correcting the failure.
The third preview of Visual Studio "14" has been released, combing some evolutionary improvements to the IDE with a insightful new debugging tool called PerfTips. PerfTips increases the accessibility of debugging program performance right in the editor.
ASP.NET vNext alpha3 was released along with the Visual Studio "14" CTP3. Several interesting changes are around ASP.NET projects - simpler project files, ability to specify build event handlers, cleaner source folders and more.
Microsoft continues to polish their powerful (and open source) Python Tools for Visual Studio package, which turns their famous IDE into a powerful Python development environment. This plugin does support the Web and Desktop Express editions of VS2013.
Visual Studio Update 3 was released last week and includes some framework and tooling improvements relevant to web and mobile developers. We go through some of these, including the ASP.NET identity update supporting two-factor authentication, new Visual Studio-Azure integrations as well as several updates to the Apache Cordova Tooling preview.
The 3rd Update to Visual Studio 2013 continues Microsoft's steady application of refinements to their flagship IDE. This update increases the usefulness of diagnostic tools, adds deployment options, and updates some key features in VS2013 Ultimate.
As promised, Microsoft has released newly acquired Visual Studio plugin UnityVS for free to developers using any recent paid edition of Visual Studio. This plugin greatly improves developers working with the Unity game development system.