Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Joyful Tools for Visual Studio


There won't be any confusion on Visual Studio as the best software development tool available today. Earlier it was mainly to Microsoft technologies. But now its opened to other technologies as well. Being the best tool in the world, it cannot incorporate all the features. For example if we want to remove all the multiple blank lines there is no direct option in VS except find and replace using RegEx.
When we develop any application made for generic purpose hardware which is computer, it cannot incorporate all the needs. One thing is that the developers cannot foresee all the needs of users. Some needs may be specific to specific user/project groups.

Visual Studio Extensions

This problem is always solved by application by giving provision to extend the application via plugins. Visual Studio is not different it has option to incorporate extensions / plugins. We can inject our own menu items, tool windows and all into Visual Studio.

For adding a direct method to remove multiple blank lines also we can extend Visual Studio. I created a plugin some years back and hosted the code in codeplex. It was very much useful to me who is working on a project which is running for last 8-10 years. So many blank spaces just to increase the file size. Some files has 5000+ lines. When a new developer comes to the team, they are just scared of touching the code. Mainly because of the size of files. So I thought of at least removing the continuous blank lines so that the scariness can be reduced somewhat.

Moving to Git and rebranding

The earlier name of the extension project was removeblanklines which limits its area to one problem. I am planning to add more features to it such as removing commented code except xml comments. So a rebranding felt right to me. So renamed it to "Joyful Tools for Visual Studio".

Extension can be downloaded from Visual Studio Gallery or directly installed from Visual Studio


Source code

I don't think there is any need to tell why moving from codeplex to Github.

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