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Visual Studio 2015 Update 1 Adds C# Scripting and New Language Support

| by Jeff Martin on Dec 02, 2015. Estimated reading time: 1 minute |

The first update to the Visual Studio 2015 line up has been released.  The update provides a variety of areas that have been altered and improved.  The introduction of new features started with the previews and release candidates, but there are a few more changes that make their debut in the official RTM production.

These changes range from the expected (incrementing the .NET Framework to 4.6.1) to the simple (minor changes made to the Visual Studio icon to better distinguish it from previous versions) to more in-depth additions.  Microsoft continues to position Visual Studio to be used as a general purpose editor for all programming projects conducted on the Windows platform.  To that end they have added TextMate bundle support to make it easier to use more languages with Visual Studio.  According to Microsoft’s Tim Sneath, Update 1 includes syntax highlighting and the beginnings of IntelliSense for several langauges including:

  • Bash shell scripts
  • CMake
  • Go
  • Groovy
  • Java
  • Javadoc
  • Lua
  • Make files
  • Markdown
  • Perl
  • R
  • Ruby
  • Swift
  • YAML

Developers using test cases for their projects should benefit from the inclusion of Parallel Test Support, which takes advantage of all of the CPU cores available on a developer’s machine.  The recently added C# Interactive Window and REPL continues to receive bug fixes (note that support for a Visual Basic scripting API is not available yet but it is being developed.)

Users whose development machines are not always connected to the Internet will benefit from a more relaxed license verification period but note that Update 1 does seem to require an initial online check.  Microsoft states that after the initial online verification process, Visual Studio will not check for validity (or lock the IDE) for at least a year or more.  (Connecting to Internet at any point will reset this timer.)

Update 1 itself can be downloaded directly from Microsoft.  A full list of known issues and their work-arounds is available for review to ensure there aren’t any mission critical deal-breakers with your environment.  Running the setup program from the command line allows the specification of the “/Layout” option which can be used to download all of the installation files to enable an offline installation.  (Subject to the license verification rules.)  Note that this will download approximately 3.2 GB worth of files.

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