First Look: Microsoft’s Visual Studio 2015

On Monday, Windows announced the release of their newest version of their Visual Studio 2015 suite that now supports the OSX and Linux operating systems! Since its beta release in April, over 500,000 developers have contributed their code and feedback to create an IDE that satisfies the array of needs that developers must attend to in order to create custom applications for web, console, desktop, cloud, and mobile.

The collaborative capabilities that the new VS2015 has to offer opens a new realm of possibility to developers through increased accessibility by offering support for different operating systems, ease of installation, porting existing code and projects into and out of VS2015, and more!  This newest Visual Studio release improves upon existing functionalities like diagnostics, deployment, and debugging, and introduces new ones to handle a wide array of programming languages while improving editing, refactoring, and creation of test suites.

The VS2015 workspace features debugging and profiling in the Diagnostics Tools window to analyze correctness and suggesting fixes or refactoring your code in real-time with Light Bulbs. Visual Studio newly supports programming language stacks in Visual Studio and .NET for Python, CoreCLR, Roslyn, TypeScript, and more. It also utilizes Roslyn’s code analyzers, familiar to both VB and C# developers, for customization of warnings and suggestions. For web and mobile application developers, there’s new support for the popular languages HTML5, JavaScript, JSON, CSS3, Node.js, and the newest version of the Entity Framework for C# development. New mobile development tools allow for targeting of the Windows, iOS, and Android platforms and improved testing with its integrated rich web tooling. In addition to front-end language support, Visual Studio has included a modular HTTP request pipeline and IIS functionality for hosting using IaaS or Paas in Azure and the ability to publish applications and ease deployment to Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and the cloud with its improved environment configuration. Windows offers their Team Foundation Server along with Visual Studio Online to manage and scale projects shared by a development team in an effort to optimize productivity in a secure environment that features Git repository management for continuous delivery and application insights that offer reporting and monitoring.

Microsoft’s openness to the developer community has been apparent through its increased support of new coding languages, new platforms, and increased usability from design to deployment. While this increased accessibility may dampen Satya Nadella’s vision of having Windows 10 on a billion devices, the power and leverage of having so many pertinent programming languages ported from an IDE that is so familiar will surely continue the success of Windows’ innovations.