Bring back Developer News!
You can download this extension from the Visual Studio Marketplace
Where's My Developer News?¶
When Visual Studio 2019 was released, many developers were dismayed to find that the Start Page had been completely replaced by the new Start Window (a big modal dialog, which had no room for Developer News).
There was a huge outpouring of disatification on the Developer Community forum that not only had the Start Page been taken away (& Developer News with it), but we were left with no way to get Developer News in Visual Studio 2019 anymore.
Increduously, Microsoft's response was to simply add a watered-down version of the old Developer News to the right-hand column of the Visual Studio installer.
But nobody wants to have to open the installer just to view their morning developer news. They want to see it as soon as they open Visual Studio, as they had done for years. And the installer only displays three news items, with a link to click on to see more online. Except clicking on the link doesn't show you the rest of the developer news feed, instead it opens a browser window to the Visual Studio Blog.
It was a very poor Developer News replacement!
Fed up with the situation, I wrote a post in the Developer Community Forum to announce that "I've decided to write a little extension to add a tool window to display the missing Developer News, either as a stop-gap until MS decide to see sense, or to use instead for the future going forward if they don't".
Start Page Is Back (or is it?)¶
Another developer, Jan Kučera, released an extension called Start Page on Startup to restore access to the old VS 2017 Start Page. The page's code still existed in VS 2019, but Microsoft simply "hid" access to it in the settings UI.
This of course therefore also restored Developer News, but at first it was "broken" and there was no UI for us to be able to "fix" it. However, after a few tweaks to the extension Jan had the news feed up and running again.
The only problem is that Jan's extension, as well as a few other people's extensions, relied on simply displaying the "hidden" VS 2017 Start Page.
After my announcement in the forum, a Microsoft employee ominously pointed out, that this code "is subject to vanish at anytime". And Microsoft did in fact rip the code out of VS 2019 in a later update, in spite of a large number of developers either demanding or begging for it to be returned.
- first we had access to the old VS 2017 Start Page (when VS 2019 was released)
- when Microsoft found people were still using the old Start Page they "hid" it
- then Jan's extension brought it back (it could also be displayed manually if you knew the trick)
- then Microsoft ripped the _Start Page_code out of VS 2019 all together so it could no longer be displayed
- so any extensions that relied on the code for the old start page just stopped working
My next extension, called Start Page+, was written to create a new start page from scratch, with all of my own code. This meant that Microsoft had no control over and could not simply take it away from us.
My hope was to combine the best from the non-modal VS 2017 Start Page (including Developer News) with the layout of the much hated modal VS 2019 _Start Window, so hopefully everyone would feel at home.
Developer News Is Back!¶
The Developer News extension adds a new dockable tool window to display the same developer news feed that VS 2017's Start Page used to provide, without relying on any Microsoft controlled code.
To open the new Developer News window:
- select View | Developer News
The old Developer News feed is just the first developer-focused feed to be added to the new Developer News window, with more feeds to come in the near future (check out the roadmap for more details).
Support the Project¶
If Developer News has saved you time and hassle, please come back and show your support: