Microsoft Visual Studio.NET IDE

Microsoft Visual Studio is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) from Microsoft. It is used to develop windows applications, web applications, web services and mobile applications. Visual Studio includes a code editor supporting IntelliSense (the code completion component), use for writing, compiling, and debugging the code.

Microsoft Visual Studio.NET supports 36 different programming languages include C, C++, Visual Basic.NET, C#, F#, JavaScript, TypeScript, XML, HTML, CSS, Python, Ruby, Node.js etc.

The most basic edition of Visual Studio, the Community edition, is available free of charge. The slogan for Visual Studio Community edition is "Free, fully-featured IDE for students, open-source and individual developers".

In this tutorial, we will using Visual Studio.NET for all our C# application development. VS isn't essential for making C# applications, but it makes things much easier for us. The main features of VS.NET are:

  1. VS automate the steps required to compile source code.
  2. The VS text editor can intelligently detect errors and suggests code where appropriate as we are typing.
  3. VS includes designing environment for developing Windows Forms and Web Forms applications, allowing simple Drag and drop.
  4. VS enables us to use advanced debugging techniques when developing projects.

Start Page in Visual Studio

When you first run visual studio, you will see the start page. The start page contains latest news related to .NET development. At the bottom of visual studio start page you will find:

  1. Close page after project load.
  2. Show page on startup.

If you have closed the start page, and later, if you want to see it again, select START PAGE from view menu.

Creating your first C#.NET application

Select File --> New Project --> you can select Console Application, Windows Forms Application, or Web Application. Enter the name of your project, Select location and click OK button.

When you open the project, you will find following windows on your screen

Solution Explorer: To view the solution explorer window, from the VIEW menu, select solution explorer, or you can use keyboard shortcut, ctrl+w,s. On the solution explorer, use the AUTO HIDE push pin button, to either show or hide solution explorer. Solution explorer is use to see all the files that are used in project. A Solution is a collection of projects. A Solution will have a .sln extension. C-Sharp project has an extension .csproj, VB project has an extension .vbproj.

If you open multiple projects, then, Startup project name in solution explorer is bold. To change startup project, Right click the project and select "SET AS STARTUP PROJECT".

ToolBox: To Hide/Show the ToolBox, Select from the view menu -> ToolBox, or use the keyboard shortcut, ctrl+w, x. From the toolbox, simply drag and drop the controls in the window/web forms.

Properties Window: Used to change property of a window/web form or a control in a window/web form. To Hide/Show the property windows, select from the View Menu -> Properties window, or use keyboard shortcut ctrl+w,p or right click on the control, select properties.