C Sharp Development 101 – A Tutorial Series

In this tutorial series we are going to look at C# Development using the Visual Studio 2010 Express editions.  This will take you from the basics of installing Visual Studio 2010 Express, to the Object Oriented Programming style associated with C# and other languages, dabble in some database access (Access & SQL Server Express) and finally, design a project that will pull all of our knowledge together into a final solution.

We are going to begin by downloading the Visual Studio 2010 express from Microsoft’s website so that we can get started on some C# development.  After the file has been downloaded you will need to have a connection to the Internet so that the program can download the necessary files to complete the install.  For the sake of customization we won’t walk through the rest of the install and will pick up with some add-ons that will make your coding experience easier.

With the Express edition now installed, it is good to know that the express editions of Visual Studio 2010 do not support extensibility.  This means that the ability to install plug-ins and add-ons is not included.  If you happen to acquire or have a full version of Visual Studio 2010 then the option is there for you to add these plug-ins that have helped me out in a tough spot before.

  • Visual Assist X
    • This is probably one of the best applications out there for intellisense and document syntax highlighting.  Now many of you might be saying that Visual Studio already does this.  Yes they do, but not as well as Visual Assist X.  This add-on will look into your added in files such as the Boost library, and retrieve all of the Boost functions and try and piece together a description of what that particular function would do.  Syntax highlighting is the best around with the quick option to do minimal to maximum highlighting.  A must have for the avid programmer but will run you $249 for a one year subscription and $49 maintenance fee every year afterwards.  This price tag might discourage most but take the 30 day trial and take it for a test run.

  • Ghost Doc
    • A product of SubMain, this add-on will allow you to document your code quickly and efficiently using XML markup.  To generate these comments it uses the elements type, parameters of the function as well as its name to generate the comment.  This is especially useful for people who do not enjoy documenting functions in their code.   Most promising add-on if you are looking for code documentation.

  • AnkhSVN
    • A free SVN add-in for Visual Studio that allows you to connect to a repository, browse the branches all within the comfort of the Visual Studio environment.  Very easy to use for people who want to start a community project on Google Code or host their own.  A must have for people who like to collaborate and don’t want to hover over one persons computer to review code.

AnkhSVN logo

All of these have been personally used and are highly recommended for use when developing for the .NET framework.  The next part in this series will go back to an old classic for programmers; Hello World.  We will go through making a project file and printing Hello World to the console as well as on a form.  As always, any problems with the series or if you just have questions post to the comments so that we may learn from each others mistakes and grow as a community.  If you can’t wait until the next post, here is how to start making a Hello World console app.  Until next time, Happy Hacking!

107 thoughts on “C Sharp Development 101 – A Tutorial Series

  1. Bah .NET!

    Unpleasant experiences with applications written by microsoft in .NET doing crazy useless resource-intensive things…

    That being said, developing in .NET with ZERO coding experience can be achieved to a functional level within HOURS.

    Fun stuff…

  2. @ doug
    the only reason why you have a nice managed framework is because your company paid for it so that you can use that free time effectively. How about you go be “efficient” somewhere else where somebody cares? troll….

  3. “Come into the 21st century brother, no flying cars, but we have smarty phones.”

    Oooh I like Smarties. Do smarty phones still have the nice chocolate interior? Have they removed the dodgy E colourings from the blue phones?

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