Now for busy developers who have to grapple with numerous technologies & project deadlines, getting up to speed with a new IDE presents significant challenges. The book Visual Studio .NET Tips and Tricks by Minh T. Nguyen
presents an assortment of 120 tips and tricks that aid the reader in better understanding the IDE. A majority of the tips apply to VS.NET 2002, 2003 & 2005 and there are about 20 that specifically relate to VS.NET 2005.
While the information contained in the book can as well be found on MSDN, what sets it apart is the way the author co-relates it to common development scenarios and presents it in a concise & engaging fashion. Although the book is ideal for beginners who have just got started working on .NET Framework 1.x or 2.0 applications with the VS.NET IDE, intermediate and advanced programmers may also find some time-saving tips.
I love keyboard shortcuts, especially those which don't involve gymnastics with the finger. I have compiled a list of my favorite shortcuts
over a period of time based on several online resources
and collected quite a few new ones from Nguyen's book.
One cool tip I learnt from the book is to enable both "Show ScreenTips on Toolbars" and "Show Shortcut Keys in Screen Tips" options in the dialog box that comes up with Tools > Customize so that keyboard shortcuts associated with an icon are shown on mousing over it. This is a great way to discover new keyboard shortcuts that are available and also allow VS.NET to prompt you when you forget a shortcut & take the toolbar/menu route.
The downside of the book I felt is that the coverage of VS.NET 2005 is not adequate considering there are so many new features
and some late-breaking changes have been missed like the fact that Edit and Continue support IS available for C#
as well as VB.NET in Visual Studio 2005 [pg 93]. But then this is understandable as the first edition of the book came out a year before the real VS.NET 2005 came out.
This is anyway a good reference for VS.NET users to have close at hand. Another good reason to have a copy is because the electronic version of the book is freely downloadable