As developer teams become more diversified and geographically scattered, they need a way to connect. For this reason, Microsoft recently announced the private preview of Visual Studio Online. This is the online code editor version of the Visual Studio tools developers are already familiar with. However, this solution provides online connectivity.
So what’s all the buzz about?
The service is a browser-based web editor that extends the Visual Studio Family. In simple terms, it allows developers to reach their remote environments from any device and perform quick edits. On top of that, the platform is based on the Visual Studio Code. This means that Visual Studio Online will also support all the extensions that are currently available for the original solution. Last but not least, the new Visual Studio will also support Live Share and IntelliCode, Microsoft’s tool for AI-assisted development.
What is important here is that Visual Studio Online is not meant as a developer’s default environment. But instead, it allows them to carry out tasks such as making quick edits, joining a Live Share session, etc. This is extremely beneficial as it exceeds the productivity of the developers in the fast changing digital world where small adjustments are frequently required.
A funny story
Visual Studio Online? Hmm..? You think you have heard that name before, right? Well, you are not wrong. Once upon a time, Microsoft was using that name Visual Studio Online for their DevOps hub. However, they rebranded the hub as Azure DevOps, and left the name Visual Studio Online behind. One of the reasons for the switch could be that a lot of people mistakenly considered that Visual Studio Online was a web-based version of the Visual Studio Family and were let down. But, not anymore!
What else is new?
Remote-Powered Developer Tools
Microsoft also released remote development extensions for Visual Studio Code Insiders. They connect your local tools to a WSL, Docker container, or SSH environment, while preserving all the features of Visual Studio Code. One of the many benefits of Visual Studio Remote Development is that the developers will be able to work on a different OS than the software deployment of the task.
Cloud-Hosted Development Environments
Another surprise coming from Microsoft is the private preview announcement of a tool that provides cloud-hosted development environments. It will reduce the time that developers spend on configuring their environments as it will do it for them. The new service will also enable the connectivity of these environments to Visual Studio and Visual Studio Code.
Good to know
Did you fall completely head over heels for the new Visual Studio Online? You cannot wait until Microsoft opens the private preview to more users? Don’t worry, there are startups such as Coder that can help you get a remote Visual Studio Code environment. So give it a try and let us know what you think!