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Visual Studio 2012 Update 1: Understanding Code Map

| Monday, February 11, 2013
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Before we get started you need to be aware of the requirements for Code Map.  Below are the requirements to leverage this feature:

Visual Studio 2012.1 and one of these editions:

Visual Studio 2012 Ultimate to create code maps from the code editor or from Solution Explorer.

 Note: Before you share maps with others who use Premium or Professional, make sure that all the items on the map are visible, such as hidden items, expanded groups, and cross-group links.

Visual Studio 2012 Premium or Visual Studio 2012 Professional to open code maps, make limited edits, and navigate code.

A solution with Visual C# .NET or Visual Basic .NET code

With that said, I often see many larger organizations who usually have a few extra Ultimate licenses so you might ask around at your company to see if there are any available licenses if you need the higher level version.

What are Code Maps?

We will get to examples of maps in a minute but I wanted to help clarify their origin.  Code Maps are a more user-friendly approach to something we have had in Ultimate for a while known as Dependency Graphs.  With this new feature we make creating and manipulating visualizations easier.  I bring this up because you may want to explore creating Dependency Graphs to learn more about how to work with these visualizations.  You can find out more here:

Creating Code Maps

The need for maps will usually manifest itself when you are writing or debugging code and need to understand code relationships.  Let’s take, for example, TailSpin Toys from the Brian Keller Virtual machine found at:

Let’s say I happen to be looking at the AddItem method and want to get a handle on what is calling this method.  I can right-click the method and choose Show on Code Map (note the shortcut key as well):

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