Visual Studio 2015 RC Targets All Devices

| by Jeff Martin Follow 16 Followers on Apr 30, 2015. Estimated reading time: 1 minute |

Coinciding with the start of Build 2015, Microsoft has delivered its Release Candidate (RC) for Visual Studio 2015.  There is a tremendous amount of new functionality being delivered with this release, and InfoQ’s Build 2015 coverage will describe some areas in greater detail.  For a broad overview, read on.

Android developers using C++ can benefit from support for Android 21 (Lolllipop) and expanded build system intended to support cross-platform tools such as NDK-BUILD.  Visual Studio has deepened its use of Apache Cordova so VS can be used to build and debug for Android, iOS, Windows, and Windows Phone.  Device support has been expanded to Android 4.4, iOS 6-8, and Windows Store 8.1.  Visual Studio’s Android emulator reflects this allowing emulation of both 4.4 and 5.0.

A great improvement to Cordova, is the “CLI interoperability”, meaning changes made on disk to project files are recognized by Visual Studio so that other tools besides VS can be used without losing the ability to reopen the project.

C++ developers will benefit from over 500 bug fixes and several additions to language support used in C++11 and C++14.  Similarly C#, VB, and F# users will see the inclusion of new language features and changes to the code editing.  VB is gaining Refactoring support and both C# and VB will see refactoring options appear in line during the editor, signified by a light bulb icon and accessible via the keyboard with CTRL-. (control dot).  .NET Developers will see the inclusion of .NET Framework 4.6 and a new version of the 64-bit JIT compiler.

Given the proliferation of high DPI displays, VS benefits from new icons that support these devices.  The long debate over capitalization in menus has been resolved in favor of Title Case replacing the ALL CAPS used by default in earlier versions.

VS2015RC brings with it a go-live license for most of its projects, meaning that you can begin using it to develop production code.  The only exception to this is for projects that target Windows 10 applications or ASP.NET5.  Windows 10 Applications will be needed to be rebuilt with the production release of VS2015 when it is available.  As ASP.NET5 is still in preview, it is not recommended for production use.  The most current release of ASP.NET, 4.6 is suggested instead.

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