VB Power Packs Slipped into VS 2008 SP 1
The VB Power Packs are a weird creation. They include critical components for upgrading VB applications. In addition to screen elements like the DataRepeater and Shape controls, it has all of the VB-6 style printer API’s. Without it, VB 6 applications that support printing cannot be upgraded to .NET.
Yet despite the importance of these components, they were not included in any of the major releases of .NET. Developers who knew about them would have to get them from the Microsoft Connect website, later from the VB Developer center. Strangely, VS 2008 Service Pack 1 did include them. Even stranger, it appears that fact wasn’t announced until a week ago Friday.
Even if you have SP 1, you won’t get the bug fixes it includes for free. If you want them, you have to manually switch from referencing Microsoft.VisualBasic.PowerPacks.dll to Microsoft.VisualBasic.PowerPacks.VS.dll.
Visual Studio 2010 will also include the VB Power Packs, hopefully putting an end to this tale.