Whidbey May CTP first experiences

[UPDATE] - Rob Caron posted a fix for the help problems. Thanks, Rob (and Josh and Saurabh, for responding to my post).

So I installed the May CTP drop of Visual Studio 2005. Unfortunately, I haven’t been having too much luck with it so far. For example:


  • I created a basic Windows Forms app, dropped a MenuStrip on it, and picked “Insert standard items” to populate the toolbar. Unfortunately, when the menu draws itself (both at design time and run time), the menu item text and the hotkey are drawn overlapping, so what you see is a jumbled mess. Not too good. I didn’t have that problem with the March drop.
  • I’m having zero luck with the help. Picking “Search” pops up a message box which says “The operation could not be completed. No such interface supported”.
  • Also in Help, I can navigate the index successfully, but when I pick a topic, it never gets displayed. The status bar says “Downloading…”, but it never finishes.


On the plus side:

  • Adding a web reference in the IDE seems to work better. The March drop never worked for me (at least with our web service). It also seems to add a bunch of data source stuff for the generated proxy classes, which looks interesting. Unfortunately, the proxies still generate with fields, not properties. However, if you run WSDL.EXE from the command line, you get properties and serializable classes, which is great (that was true in the March drop as well). I do wish there was an option to generate partial classes, as I think it could be useful to be able to attach behavior to the proxies.
  • The test generation stuff is very interesting – but seems to be rather broken. The generated test code doesn’t compile (at least for the tests that it generated for me). Question – do the tests get compiled into the assembly?  Are they excluded from release builds? I don’t see anything obvious that would cause them to be excluded from a particular build configuration.


Other quick comments:

  • I don’t like the fact that the selected tab in a tab dock is lighter in color than the unselected tabs. This is the opposite of previous versions, and I constantly fight it.
  • There still doesn’t seem to be AspCompat support in ASMX web services. I’m still holding out hope for that one.
  • The default mode for a web project seems to have changed back to separate ASPX and CS files. Not sure what that’s about, or if it will stay that way. In fact, combined mode doesn’t seem to be working very well at all (can’t seem to hook up server events).


Barely scratched the surface so far…


  • Hi, I work on the team that owns Help and was wondering if there is anything else you could tell us.

    1. Do other help features work (F1, Index,How do I, etc)?

    2. Was this a clean install (Not uninstalling other builds first, new machine/image, etc)

    If you have any other information could you send me mail to jledgard@online.microsoft.com (remove the "online.")



  • I had the same "downloading" forever experience when tring to get Whidbey help. I took the suggestion above (renaming the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\MSDN\8.0 key). I put an "x" after the 8.0. I don't know what the bad side effects will be, but it did get my help functions to work. Cool.



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