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Visual Studio Feedback Switching from UserVoice to 'Suggest a Feature' on Developer Community Site

The Visual Studio Engineering Team is moving off the UserVoice site previously used to collect developer feedback about the IDE in favor of a new "Suggest a Feature" mechanism on the Developer Community site.

For years, Microsoft has used the third-party UserVoice service to collect feature suggestions for the IDE, while bug reports were collected from within the IDE itself and managed at the Developer Community site. Now, alongside the "Report a problem" tab on that site, a new "Suggest a feature" tab is present to collect developer feedback.

The new functionality was officially announced in a Tuesday (Oct. 9) blog post by John Montgomery, director of Program Management for Visual Studio, who said it was another step in the evolution of collecting developer feedback that started with the "send a smile" mechanism that was used a few years ago.

"The reason we're moving from UserVoice is very similar to the reason we moved away from the old 'send a smile' system: we want customer feature requests to be directly integrated into our core engineering system so we have complete line of sight into the feedback customers are giving us," Montgomery said.

Suggestions on the UserVoice site will be migrating to the new Developer Community site over the coming months, a big job considering UserVoice tracked some 32,000 feature requests and more than 24,000 "points of feedback." Not all items will be migrated, including very old ones with low vote counts.

Although officially announced just this week, the new feedback collection system was detailed in Sept. 19 documentation, which noted that the UserVoice site is now read-only.

"The Suggest a feature experience in Developer Community allows you to transition from the User Voice forum into a single platform for all your feedback that engages directly with the Visual Studio product teams," the documentation article states.

"We've migrated an initial set of ideas from the User Voice forum to Developer Community. Migration was done based on the community impact of the feedback and our product roadmap priorities. If you were expecting to see a suggestion here that we may have missed, feel free to add it to Developer Community."

While Montgomery said developers will be able to browse suggestions and vote on new features, that ability doesn't seem to be functional yet on the "Visual Studio" tab on the Developer Community site, or else no suggestions for the flagship IDE have been migrated over yet.

Although other tabs, such as .NET, show "Problems" and "Features" that can be browsed, the Visual Studio tab just shows an IDE release announcement and different categories of problems. Clicking on "Suggest a feature" does bring up an input box to do that.

The Developer Community site includes tabs for Visual Studio, Visual Studio for Mac, .NET, C++, Azure DevOps and TFS. The C++ tab includes the most feature requests, numbering 39 at the time of this writing.

About the Author

David Ramel is the editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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