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What's New in Visual Studio 2017 v15.9 Preview 2

The latest preview release of Visual Studio 2017 v15.9 targets Universal Windows Platform (UWP) development, C++ debugging and more.

For UWP development, Microsoft said that in the new preview:

  • The most recent Windows 10 Insider Preview SDK (build 17754) is now included as an optional component for the UWP development workload.
  • Developers can now create .MSIX packages in Visual Studio either through the UWP packaging tooling or through the Windows Application Packaging Project template.
  • The team optimized F5 (build and deploy) tooling for faster developer productivity.
  • Developers building UWP applications with a target version of Fall Creators Update (build 16299) or higher should notice fewer XAML designer crashes.

C++ debugging has been improved with the inclusion of a “Step Back” feature for C++ developers targeting Windows. The feature lets developers return to a previous state while debugging without the need to restart the entire process.

On the acquisition front, the preview makes it easier to export installation settings. "We’ve made it easier to keep your installation settings consistent across multiple installations of Visual Studio," the engineering team said in a Sept. 11 blog post. "You can now use the Visual Studio Installer to export a .vsconfig file for a given instance of Visual Studio. This file will contain information about the workloads and components you have installed. You can then import this file to add your workload and component selections to a new or existing installation of Visual Studio."

The team also fixed several bugs in the F# compiler when working with byref types. More information on the above and much more can be found in the release notes.

About the Author

David Ramel is the editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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