• author: Nick Chapsas

Introducing the New C Sharp Experience in Visual Studio Code

Nick is excited to introduce the latest development in working with C sharp in Visual Studio code. After being in the making for quite some time, the brand new experience is finally out in preview and can be used. In this article, we will explore the step-by-step process of installing and working with C sharp in Visual Studio code, its additional features, and minor concerns that you should be aware of.

Installing C Sharp in Visual Studio Code

To get started with C sharp in Visual Studio code, you need to install the C up extension, which is the Omni shop-based extension that provides all the C sharp functionality. Once installed, you can load any project as a folder and begin working on it. For instance, you can select any project folder, open a C sharp file, and start working on it using the built-in IntelliSense.

However, to leverage the full potential of C sharp in Visual Studio code, you must install the C sharp dev kit extension that completely enhances the functionality of C sharp. This is an optional feature but includes the IntelliCode support and an exclusive Create .NET Projects button, which enables you to select from various templates when creating a project.

Features of C Sharp Dev Kit

Once you have installed the C Sharp dev kit extension, you can access several features that significantly enhance C sharp development. These features include:

  • Contextual Settings: You can now perform several actions on the solution level, including cleaning, rebuilding, closing solutions, creating new projects, and adding solution folders.

  • Net-Related Commands: You can now perform common net-related actions such as building, rebuilding, and cleaning your projects using simple commands such as.net Rebuild.

  • Test Explorer: With C sharp dev kit, you can now easily access and run your .NET tests using the test explorer. Simply build your project, select the tests to run, and then press the play button.

  • Solution Explorer: This feature gives you a complete view of your project, including the source solution folder and the test folder.

Minor Concerns to Consider

While the new C sharp experience is a significant step towards enhancing C sharp development in Visual Studio code, there are minor concerns that you should be aware of.

  • Closed Source Plugin: The C Sharp dev kit extension is not open-source, implying that you cannot view what is in there. While the basic Omni shop-based extension will still be open-sourced, most of the crucial features will be on the dev kit, locking out users who cannot access it.

  • Licensing: The C Sharp dev kit extension is licensed similarly to Visual Studio. For individuals, it is free, but organizations with more than five developers and Affiliates with either 250 PCs or users or make more than one million in revenue must pay for a license.

Comparison to Other IDEs

While C sharp dev kit enhances C sharp development, it is essential to compare its features to other popular IDEs like Jetblance Rider. Compared to Rider, Visual Studio code with the dev kit is not as free an experience as it was before. Ryder is cheaper than the licenses of Visual Studio code and has cross-platform capabilities.


In conclusion, C sharp dev kit is an excellent step forward in enhancing C sharp development in Visual Studio code. Its features are exceptional and offer a great development experience. However, it is important to consider the minor concerns, especially the licensing terms. We hope to see more Visual Studio features added in the future, making C sharp dev kit an officially supported cross-platform tool for C sharp development.

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