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This chapter is from the book

Getting Started

When you first launch Visual Studio 2010, you are presented with the Start Page for the IDE. This page has been revamped for the 2010 version to be more useful and shows off some of the new capabilities of an IDE built on top of Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF). Figure 2.6 shows an example of the Start Page.

Figure 2.6

Figure 2.6 The Visual Studio 2010 Start Page.

The Start Page contains a number of useful links to get you moving quickly. Starting from the upper left, you have three primary options: connect to TFS, new project, and open project. You also can launch a recent project from the left side of the screen. Across the top are tabs for getting started, guidance and resource, and latest news. These all provide access to online content. See Chapter 7, "The .NET Community: Interacting Online," for more information on working with the Start Page.

Startup Options

If you just don't like the Start Page or prefer to launch directly into the project you'll be spending the next few months of your life working on, you can customize what happens when the IDE boots. From the Options dialog box (Tools, Options or the Settings link on the Start Page), choose the Environment node and then the Startup leaf. Figure 2.7 shows some of the options available to you at startup.

Figure 2.7

Figure 2.7 Startup options.

From here, you can configure where to get your start page news (Start Page news channel). You set this to a valid RSS feed URL. You can also use the At Startup option to tell the environment to load the last solution, show the new or open project dialog boxes, open your browser's home page, or do nothing (show an empty environment). You can also configure how often your content is automatically refreshed from the server. Finally, you have the option here to use a custom start page. For more information on custom start pages click the Customize the Start Page link on the Welcome screen of the Start Page.

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