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Best of Blogs: Visual Studio Tools for Office, Version 2003

           There is nice article on MSDN which provides various links for VSTO.Good for VSTO developer.Just have a look on it.

Suresh Behera

                 This category contains blog articles from developers and architects who discuss how Visual Studio Tools for Office works. Also included are blog articles discussing how managed code works with Office documents.

Bookmarks in Microsoft Word

Author: Kathleen McGrath

Summary: Word Bookmarks provide a way to mark a placeholder or to insert text at a specific point in a document. They can mark anything from an insertion point to a word to an entire paragraph or section in a document. This article explains how Bookmarks work and how to use them using the Word object model.

Sharing the Same Process

Author: Eric Carter

Summary: Visual Studio Tools for Office solutions share the same process with Word or Excel, so there are a few things to keep in mind in order to "play nice." Eric explains why it is important to keep this in mind when attempting to create configuration files for Word or Excel.

Missing Arguments in C# Visual Studio Tools for Office Solutions

Author: Eric Carter

Summary: C# does not provide the same facility as Microsoft Visual Basic .NET for handling optional arguments in interop functions. Therefore, developers must make use of the Type.Missing object to handle optional arguments. Eric explains the proper way to pass missing arguments to the Office object model from C# and what happens behind the scenes.

Reason Behind the Project_bin Folder

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: The Visual Studio Tools for Office team chose to store solution assemblies in a folder called Project_bin. This article explains why this decision helps with solutions deployed to Web servers.

Where Visual Studio Tools for Office Places Assemblies

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: Visual Studio Tools for Office places project assemblies in different locations depending on how you create the project. You can create your project using a new document or an existing document. Peter explains where the assemblies build, where they load from, and what folders are added to the security policy.

Common Visual Studio Tools for Office Programming Tasks

This category contains blog articles from developers and architects who discuss common programming tasks, problems, and solutions when using Visual Studio Tools for Office.

Adding Images to Command Bar Buttons

Author: Kathleen McGrath

Summary: There is plenty of information about adding and using command bar buttons, but adding custom images to command bar buttons is not as straightforward. Kathleen walks through the task of adding images to command bar buttons using the Clipboard.

More on Adding Images to Command Bar Buttons

Author: Kathleen McGrath

Summary: This is a follow-up to Kathleen's previous article. It explains an alternative technique for adding images to command bar buttons. The Clipboard technique is an easy method for accomplishing the task, but it requires overwriting whatever information may already be on the Clipboard. The technique in this article uses the stdole2 library to convert the image and add it directly to the button.

Controlling Excel Workbook Windows from Visual Studio Tools for Office

Author: Paul Cornell

Summary: Paul provides a code example for accessing and controlling the Window object of an Excel workbook. He then discusses some of the issues that exist when you access the Windows collection and Window object from Visual Studio Tools for Office code.

Using Arrays with Visual Studio Tools for Office

Author: Paul Cornell

Summary: The Range object in Excel provides a one-based indexer into the cells contained in the Range. However, arrays in the .NET Framework are zero-based. Paul discusses some of the techniques he uses to translate and load cells into an Array object using Visual Studio Tools for Office code.

Using Excel Templates with Visual Studio Tools for Office

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: Visual Studio Tools for Office does not come with the ability to create Excel template projects; however, you can accomplish the same thing through the Excel Document project. Peter Torr explains why the Excel template project is not included in Visual Studio Tools for Office, and then he describes how to turn an Excel Document project into an Excel template.

Starting Visual Studio Tools for Office Development

This category contains blog articles about setup, project templates, Office primary interop assemblies, and other tasks relating to beginning development using Visual Studio Tools for Office.

Top 5 Loves and Hates for Visual Studio Tools for Office

Author: Julie Kremer

Summary: Julie describes the top five things she hates and the top five things she loves about Visual Studio Tools for Office. Peter Torr also suggests some solutions.

Overview of Visual Studio Tools for Office

Author: Eric Carter

Summary: Eric describes how you can use Visual Studio Tools for Office today to begin building applications for Office, using your favorite Microsoft .NET language rather than Visual Basic for Applications (VBA). He also describes how you can write .NET code to interact with other Office applications, such as Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 and Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003, using primary interop assemblies.

Why Use Visual Studio Tools for Office?

Author: Chris Kunicki

Summary: Why would you want to use Visual Studio Tools for Office to build applications for the Microsoft Office System? Chris explains why using Visual Studio .NET is more productive because of the rich IDE and the robustness of the .NET Framework class libraries.

Securing Visual Studio Tools for Office Solutions

This category contains blog articles about protecting Office solutions using the Microsoft .NET Framework security model and articles about defending against specific security threats.

Security and Deployment Explained

Author: Paul Cornell

Summary: It is essential to understand the security settings of Visual Studio Tools for Office applications when deploying them to your end users. Paul provides a summary of some of the security documentation available on MSDN, giving a great overview of the things you need to be concerned about when deploying Visual Studio Tools for Office applications.

The Visual Studio Tools for Office Security Model

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: This article provides a detailed explanation of the Visual Studio Tools for Office security model. Peter explains how the Visual Studio Tools for Office team made some of the decisions they did, considering the security of Visual Studio Tools for Office applications.

Using Referenced Assemblies in Visual Studio Tools for Office

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: Peter describes how to use referenced assemblies in Visual Studio Tools for Office solutions, the proper way to locate where they will load from, and how to register them for Full Trust with code access security (CAS). He explains why to use caspol.exe, instead of the .NET Framework wizards, to set up a security policy during development.

The Importance of Evidence

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: Peter describes why it is important not to throw away evidence of code access security, even if it is not granting permissions.

Adding and Removing Code Access Security Policy via Windows Explorer

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: This article provides a registry file that adds two context menu items on DLLs, .exe files, and folders. One menu item adds the object to CAS policy with Full Trust. The second menu item removes the object from CAS policy.

Troubleshooting Visual Studio Tools for Office Solutions

This category contains blog articles with tips for solving common problems encountered when creating Office solutions using Visual Studio Tools for Office.

Menus, Toolbars, and Forms That Stop Working

Author: Harry Miller

Summary: In this article, Harry explains why menus, toolbars, and forms might stop working in a Visual Studio Tools for Office solution. He includes a code sample that shows how to ensure that these elements continue to work while the solution is loaded.

Do Not Call ReleaseCOMObject

Author: Eric Carter

Summary: Eric provides some advice on when to use and when not to use the ReleaseCOMObject method in Office development. Typically, you should not use ReleaseCOMObject in a Visual Studio Tools for Office solution. Eric explains why.

Making Web Service Calls Work

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: Peter delivers a detailed report on why the default security settings in Visual Studio Tools for Office do not allow Web service calls to work properly. He then describes a workaround to enable Web service calls from your Visual Studio Tools for Office solutions.

Some Exceptions You Cannot Catch

Author: Peter Torr

Summary: This article describes a scenario where exceptions cannot be caught. Then, it shows how to provide an extra layer in your Visual Studio Tools for Office applications so that the exceptions can be caught.

Excel Object Model and Visual Studio Tools for Office

This category contains blog articles about understanding and using the Excel object model.

Change Events of a Named Range

Author: Kathleen McGrath

Summary: Kathleen shows how to handle change events for a named range using the Excel object model. She also includes a link to information about how this changed with Visual Studio Tools for Office, Version 2005.

Using GetSaveAsFileName

Author: Kathleen McGrath

Summary: The GetSaveAsFileName method in the Excel object model provides several optional parameters that change the behavior of the Save As dialog box. In this article, Kathleen shows how to use these parameters and evaluate the response. She also proposes using the SaveFileDialog class in .NET as an alternate option. She also mentions some of the issues encountered with code access security when saving a document to another location.

Working with Office Object Models

Author: Paul Cornell

Summary: Paul points out that developers learning Visual Studio Tools for Office are often frustrated by the Office object model, due to the amount of objects and methods available. He shows how you can wrap the Excel object model in helper functions to simplify development against the object model.

Visual Studio Tools for Office Samples and Walkthroughs

This category contains blog articles about the code examples, sample applications, and systematic walkthroughs referenced in Microsoft documentation or other official Microsoft publications.

Using Visual Studio Tools for Office to Create a Task Pane for Excel

Author: Paul Cornell

Summary: This article describes how to create a simple task pane without having to implement the ISmartDocument interface. Although not a replacement for the task pane or the ISmartDocument interface, it shows a quick way to get similar functionality to a task pane, and demonstrates how to pass data between a document and a Microsoft Windows Form.

Using Visual Studio Tools for Office to Create a Task Pane for Word

Author: Paul Cornell

Summary: Paul follows up on a previous article about how to create a task pane for Excel with an example of accomplishing the same idea with Word.

Visual Studio Tools for Office Training Labs

Author: Harry Miller

Summary: Harry describes the Visual Studio Tools for Office Training Labs available on MSDN. The labs include samples and walkthroughs for both Word and Excel solutions.

Building Microsoft Office Smart Tags

Author: Joe Andreshak

Summary: Joe points out some of the great information available in the Office 2003 Smart Tag SDK, including information on how to use the Visual Studio Tools for Office loader to load smart tags.

Fun with Word Templates

Author: Rohan Cragg

Summary: This article shows how to use one shared assembly from many different Word templates. The example includes information about issues encountered while implementing the solution.

Additional Resources

Visual Studio .NET and Office Development                                                                                                 Microsoft Office Developer Center: Visual Studio Tools for the Microsoft Office System                              Visual Studio Tools for Office 2003 Blog                                                                                                             Visual Studio Tools for Office Newsgroup: microsoft.public.vsnet.vstools.office

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