What’s new in Microsoft Visual Studio Code 1.45

Microsoft updates Visual Studio Code monthly. Keep track of the latest new features and improvements in this changelog

What’s new in Microsoft Visual Studio Code 1.43

Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code has become one of the most popular developer tools around. Built using GitHub’s cross-platform Electron framework, Visual Studio Code is a full-featured, extensible, open source code editor that supports a wide selection of programming languages and frameworks, from the familiar C, C++, and C# to modern languages like Go, Rust, and Node.js. And Visual Studio Code is avalable for Windows, MacOS, and Linux.

Where to download Visual Studio Code

To download the editor for Windows, MacOS, and Linux, go to Microsoft’s Visual Code Studio website

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.45

Published in May 2020, Visual Studio Code 1.45 adds the following capabilities:

  • Faster syntax highlighting, done through a dedicated WebAssembly binding optimized for usage by the editor’s TextMate interpreter. By avoiding memory allocations in inner loops and using new APIs, Microsoft has been able to increase the speed of syntax highlighting for regular programming files by as much as three times.
  • With semantic token styling, semantic theming can be customized in user settings. Semantic coloring is available for TypeScript and JavaScript, with support for Java and C++ in development.
  • Support has been added for automatic authentication against GitHub repositories. Developers can clone, pull, and push to and from public and private repos without configuring a credential manager.
  • The new JavaScript debugger, in a preview stage, is installed by default on the Insiders release and can be installed from the Marketplace in VS Code stable. New features include capturing of CPU profiles from Node.js or browser applications by clicking the new Profile button in the Call Stack view or using the Debug: Take Performance Profile command. Auto Attach, for automatically attaching to Node.js processes, now debugs child processes automatically.
  • New accessibility commands Focus Next Part and Focus Previous Part make it easy to navigate across a workbench. The status bar now can be read by screen readers when focused.
  • Improvements have been made to the Remote Development extensions (which let developers use a container, a remote machine, or Windows Subsystem for Linux as a full-featured development environment) including container configuration recommendations, WSL2 Docker and Podman engines support, and new devcontainer.json variables for local and container folders.

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.44

Also known as the March 2020 release (although it was published in April 2020), Visual Studio Code 1.44 features the following improvements:

  • Usability improvements including a more navigable diff view and clearer role designations set for UI controls. Also, the behavior of the Quick Widget has been tuned.
  • The Timeline view for visualizing time series events such as Git commits and file saves is now out of preview mode, by default. The Quick Open control for files has been rewritten. It also has new features such as having inputs preserved when switching providers. There is also a new setting, "quickOpen.history.filterSortOrder": "recency", that allows you to sort editor history by the most recently opened items.
  • A number badge has been added to the Extensions view to show the number of extensions in the pack.
  • Visual Studio Code now will keep the Undo/Redo stack of a file when the file is closed. When the file is reopened and contents have not changed, the Undo/Redo stack will be restored.
  • Work continues on the Remote Development extensions that enable the use of a container, remote machine, or Windows Subsytem for Linux (WSL) as a full-featured development environment. Among the milestones in Visual Studio Code 1.44: A pull request can be checked out directly into a container.
  • A Settings Sync preview lets developers share snippets and UI state across machines.
  • Two new tutorials are featured for Python, including one on building a Python application in a Docker container and one on using Python data science libraries to create a machine learning model.
  • The 1.0 version of Microsoft’s Docker extension for Visual Studio Code is now available.

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.43

Released in March 2020, Visual Studio Code 1.43 offers the following improvements and changes:

  • Search Editors that display workspace search results in a full-sized editor, with syntax highlighting and optional lines of surrounding text.
  • Support for the Orca screen reader on Linux.
  • Draggable sash corners, with support extended to the edges between views and editors. Previously with editor sashes, users could resize two orthogonal sashes simultaneously by dragging the intersection between them. Now this also works in edges between editors and views.
  • Notarized MacOS builds for the editor, so users no longer receive a warning dialog that Visual Studio Code cannot be opened because Apple cannot check it for malicious software.
  • A new setting, minimap.size, controls how the minimap uses vertical space.
  • A Column Selection mode has been added for creating a column selection.
  • The default value of renderWhitespace setting has been changed from none to selection. Whitespace characters now will be rendered by default on highlighted text.
  • A Convert to template string refactoring for JavaScript and TypeScript can quickly convert string concatenations to template strings, also known as template literals.
  • A TypeScript/JavaScript call hierarchy view is provided via TypeScript 3.8, which is bundled with Visual Studio Code 1.43.
  • A preview is offered for a Settings Sync capability to share settings and key bindings across machines.
  • Work continues on Remote Development extensions, which allow for the use of a container, remote machine, or Windows Subsystem for Linux as a full-featured development environment. There is support for Windows and MacOS SSH (Secure Shell) hosts and SSH connection sharing.

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.42

Visual Studio Code 1.42, released in February 2020, includes these updates:

  • Rename changes can be previewed. When renaming, developers can confirm a new name and see the Refactor Preview panel.
  • New settings limit the number of open editors.
  • The addition of a background highlight makes folded code regions easier to discover.
  • The Debug Console input now uses the language mode of the current active editor, meaning this input supports syntax coloring, auto closing, indentation, auto closing of quotes, and other language capabilities. Also, the presentation of input and output in the Debug Console has been tuned to make it more distinguishable. VS Code displays an arrow next to the input expression only. A new setting, console.closeOnEnd, controls whether the Debug Console will automatically close when debugging ends.
  • Tasks declared inJSON now are supported at the User Settings level.
  • The bundled version of TypeScript has been upgraded to version 3.7.5, a minor update with bug fixes. Among the bug fixes: IntelliSense works for projects not stored on C: drives on Windows.
  • The panel holding the Output, Debug Console, Terminal, and Problems panes now can be moved to the left side of the editor. The command “View: Toggle Panel Position” was removed in favor of the commands “View: Move Panel Left,” “View: Move Panel Right,” and “View: Move Panel to Bottom.”
  • The debugger for Java now supports Data Breakpoints, for creating breakpoints that will get hit when the value of a variable changes.
  • Work continues on Remote Development extensions, for using a remote machine or container as a full-featured development environment. Improved support for Windows servers, including automatic OS detection, is highlighted.
  • A Timeline view feature, now in an early preview status, provides a unified view to visualize time series events such as Git commits, file saves, and test runs for a resource such as a file or folder.

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.41

Visual Studio Code 1.41 was released on December 12, 2019, with the following new capabilities:

  • Compact folders, in which single child folders in File Explorer now are rendered in a compact form. Single child folders will be compressed in a combined tree element. This is useful for Java package structures, for example.
  • Support has been improved for opening repositories in Docker containers. This has been done via ongoing work on Remote Development extensions.
  • Results of full text searches now will update as the developer types.
  • When comparing two files that are editable, such as from File Explorer or when running a global Search and Replace, the left-hand side can now be edited and saved.
  • Errors and warnings now are highlighted inline in the minimap (code overview). The color of these decorations can be changed with new theme colors.
  • Additional predefined filters were added to the Problems panel. Problems can be filtered by type. Developers can see problems scoped to the current active file.
  • An HTML “mirror cursor” capability now allows you to edit opening and closing HTML tags simultaneously. This is control by setting the mirrorCursorOnMatchingTag tag, on by default.
  • Optional chaining, which produces shorter, simpler expressions when accessing a chain of properties, is supported for JavaScript and TypeScript.
  • Extract to Interface refactoring lets developers quickly extract an inline type to an interface so it can be reused.

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.40

Visaul Studio Code 1.40, released November 7, 2019, introduced these new features:
  • VS Code is now built with TypeScript 3.7, and supports TypeScript 3.7 directly too. VS Code also now uses Electron 6.0 for its desktop edition.
  • A new experimental version of VS Code can be run directly in the browser. It requires making a copy of the VS Code source repository. Use yarn web to activate it from there, and view the results at http://localhost:8080.
  • The Activity Bar has been revamped slightly to better indicate which activity is selected and to improve overall contrast. Window borders in VS Code can now be themed.
  • The Outline view and breadcrumb navigator have new settings to control which symbols are shown.
  • New settings let you control the size of editors when they are split.
  • GPU hardware acceleration can be disabled in Preferences, for systems that experience issues with GPU rendering.
  • The scale of the code minimap can be set via the editor.minimap.scale setting, for those using 21:9 or high-DPI displays.
  • Highlighting of matching brackets appears when you are anywhere within the bracketed region, not just when you have the cursor next to one of the brackets.
  • A “Duplicate selection” command duplicates the selection or the current line when nothing is selected.
  • Improved rendering of Unicode combining characters, with the Unicode code point count (as opposed to just a column count) shown in the status bar.
  • More font control options, such as the ability to enable or disable specific font features.
  • The diff editor’s timeout for computing changes can now be altered from its default of five seconds. Set the timeout to 0 to always compute changes no matter how long it might take. The editor can show or ignore trailing whitespace differences on lines.
  • NPM scripts can be run from a folder using a File Explorer context menu selection.
  • Slow-running tasks generate a warning, and task autodetection can be turned off to improve performance.
  • Breakpoints show up in the file overview ruler, not just in the margin to the left of the line numbers in the code editor.
  • TypeScript users can change the memory settings for the TypeScript server instance that VS Code runs for IntelliSense.
  • The integrated terminal has a number of new features:
    • Selected chorded keybindings can be passed directly to VS Code instead of being evaluated in the terminal.
    • Pressing Alt while using the mouse wheel will scroll faster based on the editor.fastScrollSensitivity setting.
    • The right-click action can be configured to always paste in the terminal.
  • VS Code’s Git tools have added these new features:
    • Untracked files in Git can now be hidden entirely, or shown in a separate list of changes.
    • A “Reveal in Explorer” action is now available for right-clicked files in the Git list.
    • Git clone actions have a progress meter.
  • Extensions have many new APIs, color tokens for symbols, and new methods for retrieving data from an external URI to the extension.

What’s new in Visual Studio Code 1.39

Visual Studio Code 1.39, released October 9, 2019, and otherwise known as the September 2019 release, contains the following highlights:

  • Text selections are displayed in minimap (code outline), with developers able to see regions in the minimap overview. Also, the minimap slider now can be dragged with touch.
  • A folding region can be expanded with the Toggle Fold command.
  • The Source Control view was updated to use the latest tree widget. Users can toggle between a list and a tree view with the Toggle View Mode on the Source Control title bar.
  • A new command enables creation of terminals with a custom current working directory (cwd).
     "key": "cmd+shift+h",
     "command": "workbench.action.terminal.newWithCwd",
     "args": {
         "cwd": "${fileDirname}"
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