The Solution User Options (.Suo) File in Visual Studio

What is Solution User Options (.suo) file

The solution user options (.suo) file is a structured storage, or compound, file stored in a binary format. This file is used to store user preference settings, and is created automatically when Visual Studio saves a solution.

Location of .suo file

The .suo file will be saved in the folder where your Solution (.sln) file exists. You might wanted to set true for “Show Hidden Files and Folder” in “Folder Options” as .suo file is default by hidden.

What informations are saved in my .suo file

This file is used by Visual Studio to store user/solution specific information such as Opened Files, Expanded Nodes in the Solution Visual Studio .suo fileExplorer, Opened Tool Windows and its Positions, User Tasks, Breakpoints, Start-up Project, Contents of Watch window, Whether the project is loaded/unloaded  etc. The same file is used by Visual Studio Addins (VSPackages) to persist information that are specific to that solution/user.

.suo file and Source Control

Adding user specific information to source control is not a good idea. Most of the code versioning control ignores .suo file by default. If included, the developer, who checks out the latest .suo file, will loose all his personal settings which is stored in the local .suo file.

Visual Studio performance and .suo file

If the size of .suo file is too large then it can affect the performance of Visual Studio. Deleting the .suo file will boost the performance.

Deleting .suo file

Visual Studio creates a new file with the .suo file extension as soon as you open again the solution. But once the file with the .suo file extension is deleted, any of your existing solution user-specific settings will be lost.

Web Search is now updated to show Quick Search Box

QuickSearchWeb Search is now updated to show Quick Search Box in Visuak Sudio IDE.

and also updated to list (suggested by Jon Galloway) and pluralsight in the default search list.

Using this Quick Search Box you can easily start searching for anything, from the listed WebSites (including custom). This Quick Search will help those who are frequently searched somthing.

Click here to read or download

The below screen shows the configuration screen of Web Search.

Web Search Config Option

Below screen is how the Web Search plugin looks like,

Search from Visual Studio IDE

WebSearch plugin is now available for Visual Studio 2013

Hello, I just released WebSearch plugin for Visual Studio 2013.

Search from Visual Studio IDE

Web Search plugin supports below options, Read more from WebSearch page

  • Multiple search options included in all Text Editor, Reference Items, Error List. (Integrated search options for Visual Studio IDE)
  • Currently this Add-in works fine with Visual Studio 2005, 2008, 2010, 2012.
  • You can customize web-search by configure option.
  • Open Search in Default Web Browser or Visual Studio Tab or any other installed browser.
  • Change WebSearch context menu position
  • Easy access with Shortcut key. I use Alt+F1.
  • WebSearch context menu availabe in all most all editor files.
  • WebSearch menu also availabe in Tools menu with default search option.
  • Configurable shortcut key.
  • WebSearch menu in Tools menu
  • WebSearch context menu in all Text Editor, Reference Items, Error List.

Using the DebuggerBrowsable Attribute

Visual Studio is very rich with debugging tools and we always use debug windows for troubleshooting issues.

Debug windows gives  us the access to view values of objects and option to edit the same. Lets say I’m working with an object, which is having large number of members in it. Now when I debug I required only few of them and the other member object values are not that much important for me. In this case I will be facing some difficulties to see the required member object in in the debug hierarchy. Which indirectly wasting my time.

To help us in this kind of situation .NET already have Diagnostic Debugger Attributes. In this post we will check the usability of DebuggerBrowsableAttribute.

DebuggerBrowsable Attribute determines if and how a member is displayed in the debugger variable windows. You can add the DebuggerBrowsable attribute to properties, fields and indexers in classes and structures.The constructor for this attribute takes one of the DebuggerBrowsableState enumeration values, which specifies one of the following states:

  • Never indicates that the member is not displayed in the data window. For example, using this value for the DebuggerBrowsableAttribute on a field removes the field from the hierarchy; the field is not displayed when you expand the enclosing type by clicking the plus sign (+) for the type instance.
  • Collapsed indicates that the member is displayed but not expanded by default. This is the default behavior.
  • RootHidden indicates that the member itself is not shown, but its constituent objects are displayed if it is an array or collection.

Let us understand more with a sample example,

The blow code block is used to understand different DebuggerBrowsableState of DebuggerBrowsableAttribute,

static void Main(string[] args)
 List employers = new List();
 employers.Add(new Employee
 Id = 1,
 Name = new FullName("Dave", "A"),
 Phone = new List() { "732-751-2921", "732-751-2923" },
 UniqueNumber = System.Guid.NewGuid().ToString()
 employers.Add(new Employee
 Id = 2,
 Name = new FullName("Aydin", "B"),
 Phone = new List() { "732-752-2922", "732-752-2924" },
 UniqueNumber = System.Guid.NewGuid().ToString()
 employers.Add(new Employee
 Id = 3,
 Name = new FullName("John", "C"),
 Phone = new List() { "732-753-2923", "732-752-2932" },
 UniqueNumber = System.Guid.NewGuid().ToString()
 employers.Add(new Employee
 Id = 4,
 Name = new FullName("Peter", "D"),
 Phone = new List() { "732-754-2924", "732-752-3922" },
 UniqueNumber = System.Guid.NewGuid().ToString()

Now let me show you the class definition,

class Employee
 public int Id { get; set; }

 public FullName Name { get; set; }

 public List Phone { get; set; }

public string UniqueNumber { get; set; }

 public string Email { get; set; }

 public string Fax { get; set; }

 public int Age { get; set; }

public class FullName
 public FullName(string firstName, string lastName)
 FirstName = firstName;
 LastName = lastName;
 public string FirstName { get; set; }
 public string LastName { get; set; }

If you observe the above code you can see that I have decorated properties with DebuggerBrowsable attribute and desired DebuggerBrowsableState. In debug mode, you can check the Employees object to see the effect of this DebuggerBrowsableAttribute.

Below given screen shot shows the debug view of Employee object.Without DebuggerBrowsableAttribute Quick Watch
In the above screenshot we can see that Age, Email, Fax are not listed and FirstName, LastName are shown without root element. Below screenshot shows the Quick watch of employee object without the DebuggerBrowsableAttribute.

DebuggerBrowsableAttribute Quick Watch

Visual Studio 2013 Update 1 Now Available

VS_Purp256_rgb-1[1]Microsoft released Visual Studio 2013 Update 1 on January 20, 2014. Visual Studio 2013 updates are cumulative releases that include the new features and fixes, this update fixed various issues.

For information about the latest update, see Visual Studio Updates and the Visual Studio Update KB article.

How to install Visual Studio 2013 Update 1?

You can download Visual Studio 2013 Update 1 from the below mentioned Microsoft server links,

Note: Microsoft scanned this file for viruses and claims to be virus free.

In case if you have used Web Installer then the computer must be connected to the Internet while Installing.

If you want to create an offline installer from web installer of the update then, once the web installer download is complete, open a command prompt, navigate to the download location, and run VS2013.1.exe /layout. Then specify where to download the files and click the Download button. Once downloaded, you can run VS2013.1.exe from the download location to install the update.