VSX development

May 11, 2008 at 9:12 PM
Edited May 11, 2008 at 9:12 PM
Hello, I have to implement a designer for visual studio 2008 much like your FrameXMLDesigner. I'm astonished by Microsoft's lack of documentation/tutorial on this topic. I'm curious to see if you have any good suggestions where to start looking for information about designer implementation.

thanks for your help!
Jun 16, 2008 at 3:48 PM
Edited Jun 16, 2008 at 3:48 PM
Hi there,

designer hosting and design-mode are not Visual Studio specific topics although VS provides quite a few services that you can leverage (toolbox, property grid, selection, undo services, etc.) I recommend looking at the MSDN documentation. There's also an article in one of the issues of the MSDN magazine.

Here are some useful links:

MSDN March 2006: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/cc135451.aspx (The Perfect Host: Create And Host Custom Designers With The .NET Framework 2.0)
MSDN: Extending Design-Time Support: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/37899azc.aspx

with regards to putting these into VS, you can take a look at AddOn Studio's source and see how you can provide your on DesignerLoader for the built-in Windows Forms designer or just replace the Windows Forms designer altogether. It is a bit unclear what goes on in the background but feel free to ask and we'll try to help you.

I also recommend learning VSX in general by reading LearnVSXNow: http://architekturaforum.hu/blogs/divedeeper/

Hope that helps!