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Mastering Visual Studio .NET by Jon Flanders, Ian Griffiths, Chris Sells

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Chapter 9. Wizards

As you grow more familiar with VS.NET, you may become dissatisfied with some of the built-in project templates. Although the templates in the standard set are all useful, some of them may be almost but not quite right for your needs or you may want a new project item template based on an existing type of project you regularly need to create. VS.NET therefore lets you copy and customize existing project and item templates or even create whole new templates from scratch. And if the built-in template-based wizard mechanism doesn’t meet your needs, you can write your own custom wizard components. This chapter describes the art of building templates and wizards in VS.NET.

Wizard Basics

Wizard is the generic name for the VS.NET facilities for creating new projects or items. Each of the project types listed in the New Project (Ctrl-Shift-N) and Add Project dialogs is a wizard, as are each of the items in the Add New Item dialog (Ctrl-Shift-A). Some wizards do nothing more complex than creating a new file, but the more advanced ones create several files and may even present a user interface to allow the user to configure the way in which the files are created. However, all wizards are based on the same underlying mechanisms.

Two main types of wizards are available in all languages: project wizards and item wizards. (C# and VC++ support a third wizard type: context wizards. However, unlike project and item wizards, you cannot write your own custom context wizard without ...

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