Writing an Installer Class for a Visual Studio Addin

Easy Visual Studio addin installation

You've struggled through understanding commands and toolbars, pulled your hair out deciphering confusing API's, and scarred your neighborhood with red-faced screams of frustration as you debug unhandled exceptions that crash visual studio.  After weeks, months or yes even years polishing an addin you still aren't finished until you create an installer program.

Visual Studio Options Pages

Configure visual studio addins

Like many addin developers I create options pages in visual studio to handle configuration of my software.  While extremely simple to create these pages, it is not obvious how they should be configured to load with visual studio.  Additionally, the documentation for creating options pages provided by Microsoft describes in detail how to create options pages, though neglects to describe how to make visual studio recognize your options page control.

Unhandled Addin Exceptions vs. Visual Studio

Keep your addin from crashing visual studio

One of the most frustrating things I've found when programming addins for visual studio is the inability to globally trap unhandled exceptions the way that you can when  authoring a windows application.  Essentially visual studio intercepts exceptions your addin throws that you neglect to handle.  The worst part is that you don't get any information about the exception before visual studio crashes!  Its great that Microsoft gets a dump of the crash, but you're left standing empty handed and scratching your head.

Visual Studio 2008 Extension Methods

This is excerpt about this blog post!

Now that visual studio.net 2008 has been released developers have a much improved development environment and framework to produce high quality code with.  Extension methods are one of the new framework and IDE features that provides a powerful and clever method of extending objects that you do not have source code for or otherwise can't directly extend.