Visual Studio Code

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Developer(s)Microsoft
Initial releaseApril 29, 2015 (2015-04-29)
Stable release1.91.1 Edit this on Wikidata / 9 July 2024
Preview release1.92-insiders Edit this on Wikidata
Repository
Written inTypeScript, JavaScript, HTML, CSS
Operating systemWindows 10 or later, macOS 10.15 or later, FreeBSD, Linux
Platformx86-64, ARM32, ARM64
Size
  • Windows: 93–97 MB
  • Linux: 89–137 MB
  • macOS: 127–217 MB
Available in15 languages
List of languagesEnglish (US), Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, French, German, Italian, Portuguese (Brazil), Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, Hungarian, Turkish, Polish, Czech
TypeSource-code editor
License
Websitecode.visualstudio.com Edit this on Wikidata

Visual Studio Code, also commonly referred to as VS Code, is a source-code editor developed by Microsoft for Windows, Linux, macOS and web browsers. Features include support for debugging, syntax highlighting, intelligent code completion, snippets, code refactoring, and embedded version control with Git. Users can change the theme, keyboard shortcuts, preferences, and install extensions that add functionality.

In the Stack Overflow 2023 Developer Survey, Visual Studio Code was ranked the most popular developer environment tool among 86,544 respondents, with 73.71% reporting that they use it.

History

Visual Studio Code was first announced on April 29, 2015 by Microsoft at the 2015 Build conference. A preview build was released shortly thereafter.

On November 18, 2015, the source code of Visual Studio Code was released under the MIT License and made available on GitHub. Extension support was also announced. On April 14, 2016, Visual Studio Code graduated from the public preview stage and was released to the web. Microsoft has released most of Visual Studio Code's source code on GitHub under the permissive MIT License, while the editor itself is distributed by Microsoft as proprietary freeware.

Features

Visual Studio Code is a source-code editor that can be used with a variety of programming languages, including C, C#, C++, Fortran, Go, Java, JavaScript, Node.js, Python, Rust, and Julia. Visual Studio Code employs the same editor component (codenamed "Monaco") used in Azure DevOps (formerly called "Visual Studio Online" and "Visual Studio Team Services").

The downloadable version of Visual Studio Code is built on the Electron framework, which is used to develop Node.js web applications that run on the Blink layout engine. Visual Studio Code for the Web is a browser-based version of the editor that can be used to edit both local files and remote repositories (on GitHub and Microsoft Azure) without installing the full program. It is officially supported and hosted by Microsoft and can be accessed at https://vscode.dev.

Out of the box, Visual Studio Code includes basic support for most common programming languages. This basic support includes syntax highlighting, bracket matching, code folding, and configurable snippets. Visual Studio Code also ships with IntelliSense for JavaScript, TypeScript, JSON, CSS, and HTML, as well as debugging support for Node.js. Support for additional languages can be provided by freely available extensions on the VS Code Marketplace.

Instead of a project system, it allows users to open one or more directories, which can then be saved in workspaces for future reuse. This allows it to operate as a language-agnostic code editor for any language. It supports many programming languages and a set of features that differs per language. Unwanted files and folders can be excluded from the project tree via settings. Many Visual Studio Code features are not exposed through menus or the user interface but can be accessed via the command palette. The command palette is able to execute virtually every feature the graphical interface supports, making it very keyboard-accessible.

Visual Studio Code can be extended via extensions, available through a central repository. This includes additions to the editor and language support. A notable feature is the ability to create extensions that add support for new languages, themes, debuggers, time travel debuggers, perform static code analysis, and add code linters using the Language Server Protocol.

Source control is a built-in feature of Visual Studio Code. It has a dedicated tab inside of the menu bar where users can access version control settings and view changes made to the current project. To use the feature, Visual Studio Code must be linked to any supported version control system (Git, Apache Subversion, Perforce, etc.). This allows users to create repositories as well as to make push and pull requests directly from the Visual Studio Code program.

Visual Studio Code collects usage data and sends it to Microsoft to help improve the product. This telemetry feature can be disabled. The information contained in this telemetry data can be inspected by the public, since the product is open source.

Insiders

An orange version of the Visual Studio Code logo for the insiders version of Visual Studio CodeVisual Studio Code Insiders logo

A nightly build called Visual Studio Code Insiders is also available. Its configuration, including any settings, extensions, themes are completely separate from the standard build. This enables side-by-side installation of both builds without any interference.

Reception

In the 2016 Developers Survey of Stack Overflow, Visual Studio Code ranked No. 13 among the top popular development tools, with only 7% of the 47,000 respondents using it. Two years later, however, Visual Studio Code achieved the No. 1 spot, with 35% of the 75,000 respondents using it. In the 2019 Developers Survey, Visual Studio Code was also ranked No. 1, with 50% of the 87,000 respondents using it. The 2020 Developers Survey did not cover integrated development environments. In the 2021 Developers Survey, Visual Studio Code continued to be ranked No. 1, with 74.5% of the 71,000 respondents using it, 74.48% of the 71,010 responses in the 2022 survey, and 73.71% of the 86,544 responses in the 2023 survey.

Relevant incidents

CEC-IDE controversy

On June 20, 2023, during the Guangdong Province's Digital Government Innovation Development Forum held in Guangzhou, CEC-IDE was released and described as the first Chinese-produced integrated development tool. However, CEC-IDE was subsequently found to be a rebranded release of Visual Studio Code that, among other things, failed to include a copy of the MIT license as required for redistributions. On June 26, Digital Guangdong published a statement, admitting that CEC-IDE is based on Visual Studio Code.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Linux only

References

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