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C# Debug Visualizers

There is a cool feature that was introduced in Visual Studio 2005 called Debug Visualizers. Basically the concept is that you can write a visualizer for any object. For example a TreeNode so you can actually look at the tree while you are in the middle of debugging the code. Or if you have any sort of custom class, you can write a visualizer for it. A visualizer basically lets you call a form and you can have pretty much anything on it like any other form.

I found a fairly good blog entry that goes over how to setup a visualizer and what they look like. There are some important things to note though. Your visualizer has to be in a separate DLL from your main executable because it has to be in the Visual Studio visualizer folder. There are two locations you can put your DLL: %USERPROFILE%\My Documents\Visual Studio 2005\Visualizers\ or where you installed Visual Studio (e.g. C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio 8\Common7\Packages\Debugger\Visualizers\).

I've found them to be very useful so far and there has been times before when developing C++ that I wished I had something like that.

Posted on: Aug 20, 2007 at 3:17 pm - (0) comments.

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