One of the things I'm digging about VS2010 is its extensibility model. I'm collecting add-ins in VS like I collect Add-Ins in FireFox. Here's my current of the best Visual Studio 2010 Extensions I'm using.
I've blogged before about the Visual Studio Color Theme Editor. It's great and lets you make VS look like whatever OS you want. Some crazy people try to make Visual Studio 2010 look like Visual Studio 2008! ;)
This crazy add-in adds 25 additional commands to Visual Studio! It's a collection of really convenient little improvements like Open Containing Folder and Open Command Prompt. But it's also subtle things like Undo Close that will reopen the most recent tab with the cursor just where it was. There's a lot of Copy/Paste improvements, letting you copy and paste a whole class, or copy and paste references between projects. It even adds "Format Document on Save" that will tidy up your whitespace every time you save your document. Lovely.
Where PowerCommands adds lots of little commands in subtle ways, Pro Power Tools changes UI things in much bigger ways.
Two of the big changes are the "Document Well" that changes how tabs behave. It'll color tabs based on what project they came from, which is nice for large solutions. It also introduces optional tab recycling that will close old tabs as you open new ones. If you prefer a pile of tabs, you can get multiple rows or columns of tabs.
You can also Highlight Current Line, nice for large monitors. It adds HTML Copy that puts code in the clipboard as in the HTML format if if you like, but most of all, it adds a new Searchable Add Reference Dialog. Magic.
I'm a fan of BeyondCompare from Scooter Software, but I like integrated stuff as well. CodeCompare is a free Diff tool that runs inside VS itself. It's nice because it's using the VS editor so it has the features you're used to like Ctrl-Scroll to change the font sizes. I wish the two panes changed sizes in sync though, and I've seen one or two crashes. Still, an excellent free compare tool, and I like that I can drag the second file in.
T4 (Text Template Transformation Toolkit) Code Generation is Visual Studio's best kept secret. It's built in and it's yummy. However, there's no syntax highlighting and opening .tt files in Visual Studio directly is a smidge scary, as it's hard to tell what's code generating code and what's the code you're generating. With the free tangibile T4 editor you get coloring and Intellisense.
What are your favorites, Dear Reader?
Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. I am a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.