Visual Studio 2010 Code Visualization Tools

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Visual Studio 2010 is a fairly important release of the developer tool of choice for writing Windows applications. One of the important advancements in the new update is how it enables developers and architects to better visualize the assets and dependencies through UML (Unified Modeling Language) diagrams.

In this episode, Cameron Skinner gives us a quick overview of how Visual Studio 2010’s new UML visualization tool's design might help you with better understanding the overall structure of your applications.

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The Discussion

  • User profile image

    It's cool that UML modelling is now included, but the ~$11,000 price tag for Visual Studio 2010 Ultimate with MSDN -- which is the only package I'm aware of that will allow the creation of UML diagrams (, maybe out of reach for the small to medium size company's developers/software architects.

  • User profile image

    Does this tool support code -> uml reverse engineering and roundtrip (code -> uml -> code) engineering?


    From a brief look at it, it appears it does not.  In which case there's better alternatives that are cheap.  I'd prefer a Microsoft provided tool integrated into the IDE, but without those features I'll personally keep to the one provided by sparxx systems (which can also integrate into the IDE, though I've always used it externally).


    I'd say if you want your UML tool to be taken seriously it's going to need the described features.  The dependency diagram generation looks interesting.  But, again, there are fairly cheap alternatives that are much more powerful if you're interested in code analysis (incl. dependency analysis).


    And, ... is there any way of changing the default colors for lines on the generated dependency graph?  Some of the choice of colors make some of the diagram lines practically invisible.


    Overall, unless I'm missing something, I'd say this tool still has a long way to go, before it offers a reasonable alternative to external tools.

  • User profile image

    true. but with the current 'upgrade' promotion to Ultimate from a lower SKU ($5000 US), and being able to deduct it as a business expense (-50% or so), twenty five hundred net cost is getting close to do-able. I'm considering it.

  • User profile image

    the architecture exlorer tool should be part of the Premium SKU for sure in my view.

    and the UML and Layer tools i would like but not as sure if i would say "must have"


    IMHO there are lots of things they could leave in the ultimate sku just not this part.


  • User profile image

    This should be 100% business expense.

  • User profile image
    Tony Loton

    You might be interested to know that I describe the new Visual Studio 2010 UML features in a new book "UML Software Design with Visual Studio 2010".

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