Class Designer PowerToys

Utilities
Although the PowerToys for the Visual Studio 2005 Class Designer and Distributed System Designers have been around for a while now (last release was December 1, 2005) I have just recently started to use them. There is some very useful functionality built into these PowerToys. Actually, there is surprising amount of functionality built in and I've only started to make use of some of it.You can download the source code and the installer from the gotdotnet workspace.Here is a list of features:Design Tools EnhancementsDiagram SearchFormatting CommandsFloating Property GridPan/Zoom Window (a personal favorite)Design Surface Scrolling ImprovementsCreate Comments with Double-ClickDesign Surface GridClass Designer EnhancementsExport Diagrams for Web (a personal favorite)Display Xml Comment CommandDocumentation Tool WindowFiltering AppearanceFiltering LinesFiltering MembersMSDN Help on System TypesFast NavigationInterface Lollipop Labels CommandsInheritance Visualization CommandsShow Type CommandAssociation and Inheritance…
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Consolas Font Pack for VS 2005

Visual Studio
Microsoft has released a set of monospaced ClearType fonts, called Consolas, intended for use in programming environments (e.g. VS 2005). In the past, I've not been a huge fan of ClearType fonts (they tend to look a little fuzzy to me). However, I've been using the Consolas fonts for about a day and, so far, I like it. I did have to bump my original font size up to 11 (from 10) to get rid of most of the "fuzziness". Per the Consolas download page:Brief DescriptionOptimized for Microsoft ClearTypeThe Microsoft Consolas Font Family is a set of highly legible fonts designed for ClearType. It is intended for use in programming environments and other circumstances where a monospaced font is specified. This installation package will set the default font for Visual…
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New Sidekicks

TFS
A while back I blogged about the Workspace Sidekick from Attrice. They have released a new version of Workspace Sidekick as well as a brand new sidekick called Status Sidekick.Status Sidekick allows you to view pending changes for your Team Projects in a hierarchical format. The best feature of this utility is that it allows you to unlock one or more locked files/folders and/or undo pending changes on files/folders. Very handy if you don't want to break out the command line documentation :-)Check out the Sidekicks page for more details.
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The Semester is Over!

Training
This semester marked the first time I've ever taught at the college level - an introduction to programming class using C#. It has been a fun semester and I've learned a lot - hopefully the students learned even more ;-).Tonight was the final exam for the class so it is officially over until next time (actually, it's not over until I finish grading the exams - but close enough :-). I'm looking forward to having some of my evening hours back for other projects (home projects, software projects, movies, etc.).Having been a contractor for eight years (not a contractor any more) I have done a lot of mentoring and one or two day sessions. However, I must admit that I like teaching in a classroom setting even more.
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Team System Utilities

TFS
Over the past few months I've come across several utilities related to Team System. Some of them have proven to be useful so I thought I'd compile a short list and post it in case anyone else might find them useful. Click here to see the list.If you know of other Team System utilities that I do not have listed, please let me know about them so I can add them to the list.
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Heartland Developers Conference

Conferences
The 3rd annual Heartland Developers Conference has been scheduled for October 26th and 27th, 2006. This will be the first time the conference has been held in Omaha, NE. I'm excited to go because A: it's very close (about 15 minutes from my house), B: it's inexpensive ($125 early bird registration fee - which my company is paying for), and C: I'm looking forward to hearing some great speakers.If you live in the midwest (e.g. Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Minnesota, etc.) then you should definitely consider attending this conference. Registration starts Monday, May 1st. There will most likely be a sellout crowd, so register ASAP :-)Although I'll be attending Tech-Ed 2006 in Boston this year I'm excited to know that I'll get at least one more conference in (i.e. learning…
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Upgrading Team Foundation Server

TFS
Three new documents have been posted on the Visual Studio Team System User Education blog explaining the various upgrade steps for Team Foundation Server. The three documents include:Team Foundation Server Upgrade Types - this document explains the various types (i.e. versions) of Team Foundation Server and what can be upgraded to what.How To: Upgrade from Team Foundation Server Trial EditionHow To: Upgrade from Team Foundation Server Workgroup EditionClick here for more information.
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Workspace Sidekick

TFS
A new utility for manipulating Team Foundation Server Version Control workspaces has been released by Eugene Zakhareyev and is available here. Here are some specifications from the web site: Workspace Sidekick is a tool for TFS Administrators and advanced users providing Graphic User Interface for viewing and performing administrative changes on TFS workspaces. The version 1.0 of TFS VC Workspace Sidekick provides the following features:View workspaces filtered by specific owner or computer name (owner and/or computer name may be selected from list of Active Directory users or just typed in)Delete workspacesUpdate workspace computer name (for local workspaces only)View specific workspace details and folder mappingsDelete specific workspace selected folder mappingsSpecify application configuration parameters (TFS server name, Active Directory domain for lookup)View log of performed actions (successful and failed)There is a nice…
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A GUID Debugger Visualizer for Visual Studio 2005

Utilities, Visual Studio
For those of you working in Visual Basic 2005, have you ever had a situation where you would like to view the value of a GUID variable during a debugging session?One of the nice additions to Visual Studio 2005 are debugger visualizers. During a debugging session you can just hover over a variable to view the contents of that variable. This works for almost all .NET data types. However, if you try it with a GUID value, you can't see the actual value - rather you see "{System.Guid}" or "Empty", if you expand the visualizer.I got tired of constantly typing "? guidVariable.ToString" in the Immediate window so I decided to create a GUID debugger visualizer. This visualizer allows you to view the actual value of the GUID variable, reset the…
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