Reap the Benefits of Visual Studio
Visual Studio 2012 is one of Microsoft’s biggest releases and has several new features, though today, we’ll cover the top 10. VS12 comes “purpose-built” to help you thrive in an environment where ideas are at a premium and speed is of the essence.
It’s no secret that a new age of modern apps is here. With connected devices and cloud-based services, you have bigger and better opportunities. Independent developers can plug in from anywhere, build an app and make it available to millions. Large, agile teams can give their businesses a significant advantage—and the faster they execute, the greater that advantage can be.
Let’s look at some of the ways Visual Studio 2012 can help you turn ideas into applications.
Here are the Top 10 Features of Visual Studio 2012:
1. Develop for Windows 8
Visual Studio 2012 contains all the tools you need to develop killer apps for Windows 8, from templates, to designers, to testing, to debugging. Blend now comes with the Visual Studio installation providing rich visual tools for creating Windows store apps using HTML/CSS and XAML. Using these tools, you’ll find everything you need to develop a great app and submit it to the Windows Store.
2. Game Development Support
Game development support is included in Visual Studio, including first rate debugging of multi-threaded XNA games.It also includes visual designers for 2D and 3D gaming.
3. Semantic Code Analysis
Visual Studio 2012 has come a long way from FxCop. Code Analysis features in VS 2012 include semantic code analysis, not just syntax but the actual logic of your code. This allows for better refactoring.
4. Team Development Improvements
Many of the new features for teams center around the upcoming Team Foundation Server 2012 release. These include performing code reviews, an enhanced diff tool, and offline work spaces. There have also been some very nice improvements in Agile/Scrum management with the new TFS Scrum Project template.
5. HTML5/CSS3 Support
6. Microsoft.NET Framework 4.5
While it’s not technically a part of VS 2012, every new release of Visual Studio is accompanied by a new release of the .NET Framework. In this case, it’s the new .NET Framework 4.5. Its big changes include improved support for parallelism and IPv6, support for zip compression, HTML 5, WebSockets, and WPF Ribbon bar support. ASP.NET Web Forms has been updated to support the asynchronous modules and handles, lots more.
In earlier releases of Visual Studio, LightSwitch was a separately purchased product. The VS 2012 release includes LightSwitch in the VS 2012 Professional editions and above. I always said LightSwitch was a developer tool and not a user tool, and it seems that Microsoft now agrees. The VS 2012 LightSwitch has a new theme, support for branding, and improved performance.
8. Metro UI Development Support
9. Develop for Windows Phone
Visual Studio 2012 provides support for developing Windows Phone 8 applications (both with a Express SKU as well as a freely downloadable plug-in for VS Pro and above). Some new features to look forward to include native C++ support, the ability to target both Windows Phone 7.x and Windows Phone 8 applications, multi-chassis support and enterprise publishing. Stay tuned for more info from the Windows Phone team.
10. Develop for Windows Azure
Visual Studio provides the best possible tools to develop your cloud services. In Visual Studio 2012, you’ll notice cloud tooling improvements including support for distributed caching, new publishing options, new templates and a lower install footprint. Using Team Foundation Service with Windows Azure, you can now achieve continuous integration and continuous deployment of your software.
When it comes to web development, Visual Studio 2012 has you covered with new templates, better publishing tools, and full support for emerging standards, like HTML5 and CSS3, as well as the latest advances in ASP.NET. Going mobile? With ASP.NET, you can now create applications with controls that optimize for phones, tablets and other small screens.