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InfoQ Homepage News Visual Studio 2022 17.8 Preview 2: Productivity, C++ Enhancements, and Debugging Improvements

Visual Studio 2022 17.8 Preview 2: Productivity, C++ Enhancements, and Debugging Improvements

Microsoft has released the second preview of Visual Studio 2022 version 17.8. Preview 2 brings a range of improvements and features aimed at enhancing developer productivity and code debugging as well as some additional C++ and Game Dev enhancements. The latest version is available for download, and developers have the opportunity to explore and utilise its advancements in the preview version.

Several productivity features have been introduced, aiming to enhance developer experience and simplify workflow. These additions include the ability to edit Pull Request Descriptions using Markdown, and improvements to the Summary Diff feature which was announced earlier. Also, there is an incorporation of GitHub avatars within the multi-branch graph found in the Git Repository Window. Furthermore, a notable feature, the Multi-Repo Activation Setting, has been introduced, allowing users to concentrate their attention on an individual repository by concealing the multi-repository user interface.

Within the domain of C++ game development, several notable updates have been introduced. These updates include the addition of C11 Threading Support, simplifying access to the CMake Targets View within the Solution Explorer, and improvements in the Remote File Explorer, allowing users to view and edit remote files by double-clicking on them.

Additionally, developers now have the added way of converting global functions to static functions. As mentioned in the original announcement post, developers can adjust the settings for this feature by navigating to Tools > Options > Text Editor > C/C++ > IntelliSense > Make global functions static tags.

Regarding the .NET/C# development, Visual Studio now offers improved support for securely handling secrets in HTTP requests. This includes the ability to store secrets in three different secret providers, enhancing data security during development. The detailed blog post about this is also available for checking out. For JavaScript and TypeScript development, Visual Studio has added launch.json support for open folders, as reported:

When you choose to open folder on your workspace with launch.json in the .vscode directory to store your launch and debug settings, it will be recognized by Visual Studio and included in the dropdown menu for the Debug targets right next to the green button.

Additions for F# programming are new code fixes to address a common mistake made by newcomers. It automatically replaces equals (=) with a colon (:) in record field definitions, aligning with F#'s syntax conventions. Additionally, F# developers can now enjoy better autocompletion for various code elements, such as Anonymous record fields, Union case fields, Discriminated union case fields, and Enum case value expressions.

Other notable changes related to debugging and diagnostics encompass cross-platform debugging support for Enc/Hot Reload, extending to Docker and WSL environments, as well as the ability to debug Linux App Services via the Attach to Process feature, the detailed steps on how to attach are available on the announcement post.

Moreover, the improvements include the incorporation of BenchmarkDotNet IDiagnosers and .Net Counter Support for New Instruments via the Meters API. Test profiling with the VS Profiler has also been introduced to enhance the debugging and diagnostic capabilities for developers.

The comment section revealed interesting info regarding the new UI, the user asked if there is a way to use the new UI. The comment got a valuable reply from Dante Gagne, senior product manager, answering the following:

At this time, the refreshed UI is only available internally. We’re working toward making it available more broadly as a preview feature, but we wanted to make sure we addressed the feedback we’ve already gotten before we start a broader roll out. We will be announcing when the new UI is available in the blog post where it goes live, so stay tuned here for more information.

Microsoft and the development team encourage users to provide feedback and share their suggestions for new features and improvements, emphasizing their commitment to constantly enhancing the Visual Studio experience.

Lastly, developers interested in learning more about this and other releases of Visual Studio can visit very detailed release notes about other updates, changes, and new features around the Visual Studio 2022 IDE.

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