Cloud sync your VS2010 settings


I don't know about you, but I have a number of machines I use Visual Studio on. Some inside the work firewall, some not, some in VM's and some only used every so often. Keeping my settings consistent between them all can be "fun."

We can only hope that a future version of VS will include some kind of sync built in, but until then?

Until then, dev's being dev's, we'll just have to solve this problem ourselves. Rudi Grobler pointed us at Robert MacLean's cool project that does just that, Pepper: A Visual Studio Settings Synchronisation & Backup Extension


"Pepper is a new free extension for Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 that I have created to solve a major pain which I am calling SLM (setting lifecycle management Smile with tongue out). The problem is that settings inside Visual Studio are vast & complex, and configuring your IDE is a labour of love, taking years of fine grain tweaks. I can personally trace back my settings to sometime in 2005 and have been tweaking and fiddling ever since.

Once when I moved jobs I forgot to copy my settings and VS felt broken until an ex-co worker was able to get a backup of my old laptop restored and sent me the file. Wouldn’t it be great to have a backup system in the cloud? Say on Azure?

This brings about another interesting scenario, what if I have multiple machines? Can I backup on one machine and restore on another? Giving me a synchronisation system for Visual Studio settings?

Pepper does exactly that, it automates the export/import of settings and allows you to place them in a SQL Azure database! ..."

The project source to is a smorgasbord of interesting items. From creating a Visual Studio Addin, to WPF to integrating with Windows Azure


A couple notes to help you play with the source...

Visual Studio will help you get your system configured to compile the source. For example, when I first fired up the Solution VS presented me with this;



If you don't already have the Web Platform installer, you can get it here, Microsoft Web Platform Installer 3.0

You'll then also want to make sure you have the Windows Azure SDK and the Windows Azure Tools for VS2010 too, both also available via Microsoft Web Platform Installer 3.0


Finally you'll also need to install the Visual Studio SDK (for the VS Addin Project), download it here, Visual Studio 2010 SP1 SDK (or if you don't have VS2010 SP1 then get this, Visual Studio 2010 SDK )

The Discussion

  • User profile image

    Live Mesh will do the same thing.

  • User profile image

    Live Mesh will do the same thing.

    how can i get live mesh to do this?

  • User profile image

    Clever but seriously - an Azure SQl database... talk about over engineered. How about a simple file to Live or Dropbox or something

  • User profile image

    @GreyCloud: Make mesh sync your "My Documents" folder which includes the visual studio settings. Or just make it sync the visual studio settings folder.

  • User profile image

    Absolute overkill (and pain) to involve the cloud in this at all. How about a simple export to a single file and e-mail solution (if you need it on other boxes).

  • User profile image

    @GDuncan411 - Thanks for the awesome post, made my monday Smiley

    @Andy - I do not agree it is overkill, I needed a system in the cloud that is reliable and has a great API. SQL Azure databases provide that. Also remember that the DB is hidden from usage, you as a user do not need an Azure account.

    @olfeng - You exactly right that you can do that, I do that with SugarSync in fact. This however is the first release, something I want to do in future is sync more items (Extensions, TFS artifacts) which you can't do and secondly also want a way to share settings without needing a username & password so that if have a great setup you can easily share it out.

    @Corrector2 - Visual Studio already has the export settings to file feature built in (in fact I am using it via the VS SDK to get your settings), so you already sorted Wink

  • User profile image

    Great for using in a team also!

  • User profile image

    Great job.

    and whatever the writer uses Azure or not, and overkill or not, this is what he want to do with fancy Cloud service. Smiley

    This is just coding for *fun*.

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