Here’s a list of tools that I find useful in my day to day work as a developer (mostly .Net related). If you are looking for tools for a particular technology, you can filter by adding the keyword in the search text box below. I have also been creating short screencasts for some of the tools. (If you haven’t already, make sure you check out Scott Hanselman’s tool list.)
|LinqPad||Lets you query databases using Linq. Also lets you run any C#/VB expression, statement or program. Screencast||Misc||High|
|ReSharper||ReSharper provides solution-wide error highlighting on the fly, instant solutions for found errors, over 30 advanced code refactorings, superior unit testing tools, handy navigation and search features, single-click code formatting and cleanup, automatic code generation and templates. Screencast.|
Another popluar alternative is CodeRush.
Use IE toolbar or Firebug Lite for IE.
|VsVim||Vim Emulation layer for Visual Studio 2010.|
A commercial Alternative (works w/ Visual Studio 2008 as well) is Viemu.
|Visual Studio Extension||High|
|TestDriven.Net||TestDriven.Net makes it easy to run unit tests with a single click, anywhere in your Visual Studio solutions. It supports all versions of Microsoft Visual Studio and it integrates with the best .NET development tools.||Testing||High|
|SSMS Tool Pack||Best free SQL Server Management Studio Add-In||Sql||High|
|Vim||Vim is a highly configurable text editor built to enable efficient text editing. It is an improved version of the vi editor distributed with most UNIX systems.|
I have been using it for the last year or so and am still a noob, but it’s my favorite editor. If it’s not for you, you might like Notepad ++ .
|Log Expert||LogExpert is a Windows tail program (a GUI replacement for the Unix tail command)||Debugging||High|
|SqlSearch||SQL Search is an add-in for SQL Server Management Studio that lets you quickly search for SQL across your databases.||Sql||High|
|WinMerge||WinMerge is a Windows tool for visual difference display and merging, for both files and directories. Unicode support. Flexible syntax coloring editor. Windows Shell integration. Regexp filtering. Side-by-side line diff and highlights diffs inline.||Misc||High|
|F.lux||Makes the color of your computer’s display adapt to the time of day, warm at night and like sunlight during the day.||Misc||High|
|Process Explorer||Process Explorer shows you information about which handles and DLLs processes have opened or loaded. Overview||Admin||High|
|Growl For Windows||Growl for Windows is a Windows-compatible version of Growl, a notification system for Mac OS X.|
Visual Studio Addin
|ILSpy||Open-source .NET assembly browser and decompiler. dotPeek is a great alternative.||Misc||Medium|
|WPF Inspector||Simplifies visual debugging of WPF applications at runtime. Screencast||WPF/Silverlight||Medium|
|git-tfs||git-tfs is a two-way bridge between TFS and git. How-to||Misc||Medium|
|AutoTest.Net||AutoTest.NET is based off of autotest which is a popular Ruby tool for running your unit tests as soon as your save your files. This practice gives you immediate feedback and helps facilitate real test driven development.|
|Hide Main Menu||After installing this extension, Visual Studio’s main menu will collapse when not in use (using the same behavior as Windows Explorer and Internet Explorer).||Visual Studio Extension||Medium|
|Console||Windows console window enhancement. Console features include: multiple tabs, text editor-like text selection, different background types, alpha and color-key transparency, configurable font, different window styles. ConEmu and PowerCmd are good alternatives.||Misc||Medium|
|KillCassini||A Visual Studio extension to kill Asp.Net Web Development Server.||Visual Studio Extension||Medium|
|SandCastle||Enables managed class library developers to easily create accurate, informative documentation with a common look and feel.|
|CLR Profiler||The CLR Profiler includes a number of very useful views of the allocation profile, including a histogram of allocated types, allocation and call graphs, a time line showing GCs of various generations and the resulting state of the managed heap after those collections, and a call tree showing per-method allocations and assembly loads.||Misc||Low|
|DebugDiag||The Debug Diagnostic Tool (DebugDiag) is designed to assist in troubleshooting issues such as hangs, slow performance, memory leaks or fragmentation, and crashes in any Win32 user-mode process. The tool includes additional debugging scripts focused on Internet Information Services (IIS) applications, web data access components, COM+ and related Microsoft technologies.||Debugging||Low|
|Regulator||An advanced Regular expressions testing tool, featuring syntax highlighting and web-service integration with Regexlib.comÕs database of online regular expressions.||Misc||Low|
|Log Parser 2.2||Log parser is a powerful, versatile tool that provides universal query access to text-based data such as log files, XML files and CSV files, as well as key data sources on the Windows¨ operating system such as the Event Log, the Registry, the file system, and Active Directory||Admin||Low|
|Glimpse||Allows you to debug your web site or web service right in the browser. Glimpse allows you to “Glimpse” into what’s going on in your web server. In other words what Firebug is to debugging your client side code, Glimpse is to debugging your server within the client.||Asp.Net||Low|
|Ninite||Easy way to install and update lots of software, very helpful on a fresh OS install.||Misc||Low|
|SQLCop||Highlights potential problems in your SQL Server database.||Sql||Low|
|.Net Assembly Information||Display .NET Assembly Information like Compilation mode DebugRelease, Assembly full name and Assembly references||Misc||Low|
|Fiddler||Fiddler logs all HTTP(S) traffic between your computer and the Internet and Fiddler allows you to inspect all HTTP(S) traffic, set breakpoints, and “fiddle” with incoming or outgoing data. Fiddler includes a powerful event-based scripting subsystem, and can be extended using any .NET language.|
Make sure you check out the Addons. Wireshark is another alternative.
|Ncrunch||NCrunch is an automated parallel continuous testing tool for Visual Studio .NET. It intelligently takes responsibility for running automated tests so that you don’t have to, and it gives you a huge amount of useful information about your tests (such as code coverage) inline in your IDE while you work.|
An alternative to watch out for is Mighty-Moose.
|Visual Studio Extension||Low|
|WinDbg||Microsoft Windows Debugger (WinDbg) is a powerful Windows-based debugging tool. It is capable of both user-mode and kernel-mode debugging.|
|FxCop||FxCop is a code analysis tool that checks .NET managed code assemblies for conformance to the Microsoft .NET Framework Design Guidelines.||Misc||Low|
|VSColorOutput||VSColorOutput can change the color of a line emitted to the output window based on specified rules.||Visual Studio Extension||Medium|
|Sando||Local Code Search Engine||Visual Studio Extension||Low|
|BugAid||Enhance the Debugging experience in Visual Studio||Visual Studio Extension||Medium|
|ConsolR||Enables you to execute C# code againt a running .NET 4.0 web application’s app domain through a browser||Asp.Net||Low|
|Hawkeye||Allows you to view, edit, analyze and invoke any object from a .Net application.||Misc||Medium|
|GrayWolf||Allows you to reverse-engineer and modify IL for .Net assemblies||Misc||Low|
|Choclatey||Package Manager for Windows||Visual Studio Extension||Medium|