MZ-Tools Articles Series: HOWTO: Get an EnvDTE.DTE instance from a Visual Studio package

July 18, 2013

Two extension approaches (add-in, packages), two APIs (automation model, services)… and four combinations: It happens that add-ins not only can use its more natural API (the EnvDTE automation model), but can also use services provided by the Visual Studio shell and packages. The EnvDTE automation model doesn’t provide a direct way to get a service […]


MZ-Tools Articles Series: HOWTO: Create a project from a Visual Studio add-in inside a solution folder

July 17, 2013

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about how to create a project from a Visual Studio add-in. A question today in the MSDN VSX forum has made me to realize that I only covered the case when you add a project directly to the solution, not the case when you want to add the […]


MZ-Tools Articles Series: HOWTO: Autoload a Visual Studio package

July 16, 2013

One of the first things that you learn about Visual Studio packages is that by default they are loaded on demand (delayed loading), not when Visual Studio launches (because there are tons of them and it would take a lot of time, CPU and memory to load all of them). To show their user interface […]


Visual Studio 2013 Options window now resizable

July 11, 2013

Finally (well, after 6 releases and 10+ years…) the Options window of Visual Studio 2013 will be resizable (at least in VS 2013 Preview it is), and of course it will remember the size between sessions. This opens an opportunity for better integration of “heavy” Visual Studio extensions (ie, with lots of options) that previously […]


MSADDNDR.DLL 12.0.20617.1 installed by VS 2013 Preview breaks setups of VBA add-ins

July 10, 2013

In the last couple of days two users of my add-in MZ-Tools 3.0 for VBA have reported me that the (latest) setup failed with error “Unable to register DLL/OCX:RegSvr32 failed with exit code 0x5″. Again? After discovering some months ago that the problem happened because Office 2013 no longer ships the MSADDNDR.DLL file, officially confirmed […]


Announcing the MZ-Tools Articles Series about Visual Studio SDK packages

July 10, 2013

One of the consequences of my decision to move to SDK packages (apart from changing the title of the blog “Visual Studio Extensibility with Add-ins” at some point) is to start the MZ-Tools Articles Series (about Visual Studio SDK packages). I have created a new section on my Resources about Visual Studio .NET extensibility page […]


Moving to SDK packages (slowly)

July 9, 2013

I have been developing add-ins for Visual Studio since the first Visual Studio .NET 2002 version. But, as you already know if you are long-time reader of my blog, add-ins have become now second-class citizens in the Visual Studio Extensibility (VSX) ecosystem, something that manifests in the following facts: Minor enhancements of the automation code […]


MZ-Tools Articles Series: HOWTO: Changing the source code of Visual Studio Add-in project templates

July 8, 2013

Nine years ago, back in July 2004, my very first article of the MZ-Tools Series was about changing the source code of templates used by Visual Studio when generating projects (Class Library, etc.): HOWTO: Changing the source code of templates used by Visual Studio .NET wizards http://www.mztools.com/articles/2004/MZ2004001.aspx All these years later I have used hundreds […]


The strange case of error 80131515 loading a Visual Studio add-in

July 8, 2013

This morning I got an error 80131515 loading my MZ-Tools add-in that I had never seen before, and it was not mentioned in my article HOWTO: Troubleshooting Visual Studio and Office add-ins, so I searched the web. It happens that after installing the add-in through the setup on a virtual machine on Windows Azure, I […]


Visual Studio 2013 SDK project templates for extensions confusing in New Project dialog

July 7, 2013

Now that the VS 2013 Preview SDK is the owner of all project templates for VS extensions, including the “Visual Studio Add-in” project template, I have opened a kind of bug at Microsoft Connect requesting some reorganization of the “Extensibility” nodes in the New Project dialog: Visual Studio project templates for extensions confusing in New […]