VISUAL ASSIST - Filling Gaps in Visual Studio for C/C++ and C# Developers

Build Announcements

Visual Assist 2022.4 now available

VA 2022.4

The fourth update to Visual Assist 2022 is here! This release updates some core Visual Assist behaviors, adds a key C++ language feature, and adds support for external configuration files. The release also continues initiatives on shader code from the previous release.

If you haven’t updated yet, download the latest release here.

Parser changes

One of the highlights of this release is improvements to Visual Assist’s parser. The parser is core to how Visual Assist understands (and therefore suggests) code.

Numerous upgrades and fixes have been undertaken to make the parser smarter. This makes it recognize modern C++ code standards and practices, thereby minimizing unwanted behavior as well. Here are some of them:

  • Now distinguishes between std::get and std::tuple.
  • Now understands parameters declared with “out int” in C#
  • Fixed parser getting confused with case’1′ inside switch statement.

Expect a steady stream of updates to parser behavior. If you encounter any bugs or errors submit a bug report on our community forums.

Support for C++17’s structured bindings

With the parser changes, VA 2022.4 also includes added support for C++17’s structured bindings. Structured bindings enable users to declare multiple variables initialized from a tuple or struct, simplifying and improving code readability.

VA’s improved parser recognizes structured bindings introduced in C++17, adding support for VA features such as code suggestion and navigation.

With this change, variables that are contained within the binding are now recognized. For example, typing a dot will now be properly colored and displayed on the navigation bar. You can also rename, search, and perform all the other actions you would expect from VA.

Continued HLSL improvement

The recently-added High Level Shading Language (HLSL) support has been augmented with coloring support for a variety of file types. This includes matrix types double4x2 and fixed3x4, and some base types such as min10float3. Because HLSL typically lacks corresponding header files, a more sophisticated understanding of code was required.

For those who are unaware, official HLSL support shipped with the previous release. HLSL and Unreal’s USF and USH files now integrate with VA’s core features.

Respecting VSCode excludes config files

Visual Assist now includes an option to consider configuration instructions similar to those used in VSCode settings .json files. This comes at the request of those who wish to skip unnecessary parsing when building solutions. 

This means that you can open a file without needing to parse an entire project or a solution, saving precious time. This is a way to essentially tell Visual Studio and Visual Assist to “open a file but do not parse anything else apart from a specific part.”

Enable the option to detect and honor exclude settings via ticking a checkbox in Visual Assist options. Here is an example of a configuration file with exclude settings:

An example configuration that VA will now recognize. Note: The actual JSON files are often configured in VS Code itself through a UI.

A new code inspection

This release also adds an inspection for bugprone-string-integer-assignment—a check based on LLVM/Clang-Tidy. It checks for easy-to-miss instances of assigning an integer to  std::basic_string<CharT> (std::string, std::wstring, etc.).

Access other code inspections by accessing the following:
(If you are not seeing options, please remember to enable code inspections!)

  • Quick Actions and Refactorings menu ( Shift + Alt + Q
  • VAssistX Code Inspection (beta) VA Code Inspection Results

Minor bug fixes

  • Fixed comments getting duplicated in tooltips.
  • Fixed issue where VA’s tooltips would not appear if IntelliSense was disabled
  • Fixed issue where VA Outline tooltip spreads across two monitors with different DPI settings could cause the system to freeze.
  • Fixed issue where tomato icon may become black on hover in VS 2022
  • Fixed issue where class method name that begins with “using” is missing from MIF.

For more information about the changes in this release, head on over to the documentation. We hope you find these changes useful. Happy coding!

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