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DevExpress has announced a free express version of CodeRush (for C# and VB.Net).

http://blogs.microsoft.co.il/blogs/kim/archive/2008/10/28/coderush-for-free-coderush-xpress-for-visual-studio-announced.aspx

I've read about CodeRush Pro and suspect that it is probably worth the money--but I've always had other things I needed to spend the money on. Is CodeRush Express worth the time and effort to download and learn to use. It's help file didn't install and I'm a little frustrated as to how to use it.

Thanks,

rp

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I use the PRO version and I would say without hesitation that it will pay for itself in increased productivity almost immediately!

I looked at the technical overview of the express version and I would have to say that it's probably worth the installation if you can't get the upgrade yet.

As for not having help, place the caret on certian elements (like undeclared variables) and "press the Refactor/Code key (Ctrl+`) to see list of intelligent suggestions". Also, look for and click on the three dots under the text where you have parked the caret.

The DevExpress site has several training videos that would give you a great start. Even if the express version doesn't do it all, the tutorials should help you with the basic navigation/operation.

I would suggest that any VS add-in doing this much processing uses resources so make sure you have the speed, RAM, and CPU's available to take on the extra work! (Not to mention whatever other apps and services are running at the same time...)

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In answer to the answer about modifying settings, you can show the DevExpress menu by modifying a registry setting: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Developer Express\CodeRush for VS\3.2: HideMenu (Set to 0)

I've had trouble with a large solution (40 projects), from time to time the background parsing seems to choke and VS will hang and die. It gets progressively more and more frequent. I've variously tried disabling cache, installing/reinstalling, disabling/enabling add-in. All seem to work, but only temporarily...

EDIT: I've given up - it just exploded too often. Uninstall, with slight regrets. The thing I miss the most? Alt+cursor to navigate by camel case.

EDIT: I've re-installed and been using for a while. Hasn't hung on me (well Visual Studio has, but I haven't blamed it on CodeRush this time). To be completely honest, I don't actually use ANY of the functionality - except the nice outlining lines, and an occasional 'invert if logic' or 'create backing field'. I really need to go an take a look at those training videos.

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@John Kraft, you can disable the smart cut/copy in CodeRush Xpress.

Set this registry key value that Benjol mentions to 0:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Developer Express\CodeRush for VS\3.2\HideMenu

Restart Visual Studio then press CTRL+SHIFT+ALT+O.

Go to Editor | Clipboad | Smart Cut/Copy and uncheck Enabled. Back to normal.

As regards usage, I've noticed that solutions take a fair bit longer to open but everything is OK after that. It's strange how you can almost feel the missing refactorings after a while.

6 accepted

I had installed CodeRush Express (as well as ReSharper 4.0) on VS2008. I also suffered from the slow-down issues described above (despite dual-core 64-bit CPU with 6Gb RAM), as well as fairly significant increases in memory uses for devenv.exe. I have just been forced to uninstall it after more than a dozen crashes on the same project (not even that huge a project either) today alone, and as soon as it had been removed the system is stable again. I've seen some nice features in there, but unless you are sure you will use them then I'd suggest not to install it on a main development machine. If you install it and get random crashes and high memory usage, particularly under Vista, then you should probably uninstall it.

Version 3.0 of Resharper had caused similar problems before and had led to me uninstalling it, but v4.0 has not caused these same problems for me.

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I tried CodeRush express for a week and I am now using the trial of CodeRush full. At the end of the trial my bank account will be $250 lighter. I can't imagine coding again without this.

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CodeRush Xpress for C# and Visual Basic inside Visual Studio 2008 is an excellent post about the features in CodeRush Express by Mark Miller at Devexpress

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I can say with no hesitation that is 100 times better than no refactoring tool at all.

Their latest version (2009.2.4 as of this post) is a lot faster than previous versions and certainly worth trying.

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@Jonathan Webb

For those still searching, the registry key location for Server 2008 x64 is:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Developer Express\CodeRush for VS\3.2\HideMenu
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I love pro, but can't afford it.

I tried express, and loved it; except for one feature. I hate the so-called 'smart cut' feature. It's not so smart. It always cuts exactly what I don't want it to cut. Unfortunately, the free version does not come with the ability to alter the settings (at least that I or my colleagues could find). That one feature was a showstopper for me, so I uninstalled it.

If you like the smart cut feature, I'd highly recommend it.

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I am in the processing of uninstalling it right now...

The features are great; in the short time I tried it, I really liked it.

But it slowed down my VS2008 terribly. I would open a solution and wait and wait. Drawing all the UI guides would slow everything to a crawl. Now, I realize my company hasn't given me the fastest machine around, so I'd say if you have a beefy machine, you might not notice this.

I also didn't like the extra folder it created all the time (*DXCore.Solution), but I could look past that if I didn't spend so much time waiting around.

Update:

Running the newer version (on the same machine as above) is much, much better. Opening a solution does take a little bit longer and there is an occasional pause but certainly worth it for the benefits of CodeRush Express.

The extra folder has also been removed.

Very nice job by DevExpress and I'd say it's definitely worth the time now.

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I had used the trial version of CodeRush several times before and was quite impressed with the feature set, so when CodeRush Express was announced I was quite excited. But after installing it, I started to have high memory usage, with weird crashes and unexpected actions happen while typing. After uninstalling it, my machine went back to very stable condition. While I recommend CodeRush, I can?t recommend the Express Edition.

The enviroment I used was a Dell XPS laptop, dual core with 3 gigs of memory, Visual Studio 2008 Professional with no other plugins.

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I've used it since I first heard about it a while back. I have never had any problem with it slowing my machine down or instability.

As another answer states, it is better than no refactoring tool at all.

Recently I decided to give ReSharper 5.1 a try and I am sorry that I did. After about 2 weeks of really trying to give it a chance, I find that it get's in the way more than it helps. I am going to put Code Rush Express back on and hopefully someday go to the pro version.