Join Walt Ritscher for an in-depth discussion in this video Exploring the About screen, part of Visual Studio 2015 Essentials 02: Getting Comfortable with the IDE.
- Most Microsoft applications have an About screen tucked away in the Help menu. Open the About page to learn more about the application its version number and updates installed on your computer. Before I explain the parts of this dialog be aware that some of the information displayed for your install may be different from what's shown on my computer. In the upper-left portion of the About screen is information about which version of Visual Studio is installed. I have Visual Studio Enterprise 2015 below that it's the line that shows the version number.
On the right side of the screen is information about the current .NET framework version. .NET is a managed runtime for application development. You have to have .NET installed to build a lot of different application types in Visual Studio. This section of the about screen shows the latest version installed on this computer. In the upper right are some links to the licensing terms for using Visual Studio and a link to the current licensing status of this copy of Visual Studio. If I click on this link, I can read information about my license.
I see that I have a trial version installed and that I currently have 86 days left in my trial. I'll reopen the About screen. In the center of the screen is a list of the installed products. Visual Studio is a suite of tools. There are many applications, SDKs, and APIs added to your computer during the install. This section lists those products. For instance, I can see that I have Visual C# 2015 installed.
When I click on the item, I see some additional details down here in the bottom of the page. Now there's a lot of information here so what I can do is click on the Copy Info button and I'll bring in Notepad and paste in the information that's available. So rather than scrolling up and down in that list I can get a complete dump of that information here. As you integrate other tools into Visual Studio they will show up on the installed product list too.
For example, I've installed the Xamarin mobile development tools. So if I scroll down to the bottom of this installed list I can see information about those tools. Here is the Xamarin tool and here is information about the Android pieces and the iOS pieces and so on. You might need information about the computer. If so, you can click on the System Info button. This runs a diagnostics on the computer and shows information about the hardware that's installed the different components that are installed.
For instance, I can read more about the display that's installed on my computer. I can also get information about the software environment. Here's a section on the installed services that are available inside my computer. I'll close this dialog. Finally, if you're having graphics or sound problems, try this DXDiag button. The abbreviation DX stands for DirectX. As you may know, DirectX is Microsoft's premier graphics rendering engine.
Clicking on this button allows you to see details about the DirectX system. So here I can see information about the system. I can read information about the different displays that are running on my computer, the different sound cards that are available and other information. As you can see the About dialog has a lot of useful diagnostic information. You probably won't spend a lot of time in the dialog but when you're having trouble or need details about your current Visual Studio components the About dialog has the tools you need.
- Understanding tool and window types
- Working with the Solution Explorer
- Pinning tabbed editors
- Working in full-screen mode
- Sizing windows