We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Reviews
15,670 Reviews

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Beta 1 review

Free in beta

Manufacturer: Microsoft

Although not without problems, Microsoft Visual Studio is the premier IDE for developing applications with the Microsoft .Net Framework and at least a contender for the best Windows-hosted C/C++ IDE.

Although not without problems, Microsoft Visual Studio is the premier IDE for developing applications with the Microsoft .Net Framework and at least a contender for the best Windows-hosted C/C++ IDE.

Judging by this beta, Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 is a promising update.

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010: Improved UI

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 has a revamped user interface that looks much cleaner than previous versions of Visual Studio, and uses Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) rather than Windows Forms.

We like the way this works, at least on a computer with plenty of RAM and a good graphics board. We give the Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 UI a big thumbs-up, and it also supports multiple monitors.

Not surprisingly, the WPF designer is even smoother than before. Additionally, you can now generate data-bound WPF controls by dragging items from the Data Sources window to the WPF designer. Even better, the XAML designer for Silverlight achieves parity with the WPF designer; you no longer need to switch out of Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 to Expression Blend to work on a XAML design visually.

The new code browsing features are another win. Once you've learned to use Ctrl-Scroll to zoom in and out on the screen, you don't even think about it. Once you've learned the Navigate To shortcut (Ctrl-Comma) and the Call Hierarchy navigation, you'll wonder how you got around your projects before.

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010: Debugging and TDD

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 has much improved thread debugging; given the increased support for multithreading and parallelism, this is a necessity.

Toolboxes and IntelliSense are now sensitive to the Framework version of your target project, so you don't have to wait until compile or runtime to discover that you've used a feature unsupported by your target. Again, given the increased number of possible targets, this is a necessity.

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 has supported test-driven development for years, but it was always awkward to create new stubs and to synchronise IntelliSense if you actually wrote the tests first. Now you can switch into consume-first mode to keep IntelliSense from running amok, and you can generate stubs from their usage.

NEXT PAGE: .Net languages

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Expert Verdict »

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Professional Edition complete package Scores 8.8 out of 10 based on 5 reviews
1.6GHz or faster processor
Windows Vista (x86 or x64), all editions except Starter Edition
Windows XP (x86 or x64), Service Pack 2 or later, all editions except Starter Edition
Windows Server 2003 (x86 or x64), Service Pack 1 or later/Windows Server 2003 R2 or later (x86 or x64), all editions/Windows Server 2008 (x86 and x64) or later (all editions)/Windows Server 2008 R2 RC (x64) Enterprise Edition/Windows 7 RC (x86 and x64) Ultimate Edition
1024MB RAM
3GB of available hard disk space
5400rpm hard disk drive
DirectX 9-capable video card that runs at 1280 x 1024 or higher display resolution

Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 Beta 1 is a very promising upgrade to the premier IDE for .Net development. It improves the UI, IntelliSense, and Designers; supports parallel programming; and improves support for test-driven development. It's still missing support for ASP.Net MVC and smart devices.

  • Visual Studio 2008 SP1 review

    Visual Studio 2008 SP1

    Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 (VS08) Service Pack 1 (SP1) took eight months to arrive. Considering the capabilities that have been added, eight months might not seem so long.

  • Microsoft Silverlight 3 review

    Microsoft Silverlight 3

    Microsoft Silverlight 3, Microsoft's much-enhanced rich internet application platform runs on Windows or Mac desktops, online or offline

  • Microsoft Expression Web

    Microsoft Expression Web

    Microsoft's Expression Web places CSS (cascading style sheets), XML, and other industry standards at the core of its site design and management strategy.

  • Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 review

    Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010

    Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 is a significant improvement over SharePoint 07, providing IT execs with multiple ways to streamline their infrastructure and cut costs.

  • Microsoft Expression Blend

    Microsoft Expression Blend

    Microsoft Expression Blend is a little hard to describe. It's a design tool for creating XAML application interfaces, mainly for programs that run on .Net 3.0 and the WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation). It's been superficially compared to Microsoft's take on Adobe Flash, but we're not sure that's a precise comparison.


IDG UK Sites

Very best Black Friday 2014 tech deals UK: Latest bargains on phones, tablets, laptops and more...

IDG UK Sites

Tech trends 2015: 3D printing grows up

IDG UK Sites

10 mind-blowing Oculus Rift experiments that reveal VR's practical potential

IDG UK Sites

Black Friday 2014 UK: Apple deals, Amazon deals & other Black Friday tech offers