Visual Studio 2015 CTP 5 is Now Available

Posted on January 19, 2015 by Paul Thurrott in Dev with 0

Microsoft on Friday issued the latest Community Technical Preview release for Visual Studio 2015. CTP 5, as it’s called, is not a major update, but it adds new debugging and diagnostics, XAML language service, and ASP.NET 5 features, and various other changes since the last CTP from November 2014.

Microsoft provides a complete list of the new features and changes in Visual Studio 2015 CTP 5 on its Visual Studio web site. But here’s a quick peek at some of the things that stick out to me.

Debugging and diagnostics. A new Diagnostic Tools window appears while debugging, displaying Debugger Events with IntelliTrace, Memory Usage, and CPU Usage. Much more information here.


XAML language service. Microsoft says that the XAML language service has been “rebuilt” on top of the .NET Compiler Platform (“Roslyn”) for an improved and more reliable XAML editing experience with rich IntelliSense. You won’t see many changes immediately, but this upgrade means that Microsoft can now add features much more easily.

ASP.NET 5 has been updated with improved performance, but also no new features. The Add Reference dialog now supports any standard C# projects, and not just other ASP.NET 5 projects. You can now add a reference to a standard C# project as well. The HTML, CSS, and JavaScript editors have been updated with IntelliSense and validation improvements, better support for client-side task runners (Grunt and Gulp), and a browser chooser for running or debugging ASP.NET 5 projects. More information here.

TypeScript 1.4. Visual Studio 2015 CTP 5 includes the latest version of TypeScript, which supports typed unions, type aliases, and new ES6 features. More information here.

You can download Visual Studio 2015 Community Technical Preview 5 from the Microsoft web site. The final release is obviously shipping this year, but given the rapid updates in preview, I would imagine it will ship well before Windows 10. Build 2015 is scheduled for late April: that seems like a logic time to announce the final release, though many previous releases were timed for VSLive, I think.

And if you’re not interested in beta releases, remember that Microsoft recently swapped out its free Express products for the new Visual Studio Community 2013: this is essentially a free version of Visual Studio Professional that supports multiple project types (like Windows, Windows desktop, Windows Phone, web and more) and multiple languages (C#, VB, F#, C++, Python, HTML 5, JavaScript, and more).