Chapter 42

DataTips, Debug Proxies, and Visualizers


  • Inspecting the contents of your variables using DataTips
  • Applying attributes to your classes and member variables to customize the debugger behavior
  • Creating type proxies and visualizers to represent complex variables and data types in a useful way within the debugger

Other than writing code, debugging is likely the most time-consuming activity when writing an application. If you consider all the time you spend stepping through code, looking at the Watch window to see the value of a variable, or even just running the application looking for any exceptions being raised, you realize that this is one of the most time-consuming parts of writing software.

Previous chapters have focused on how you can use the various debugging windows to retrieve information about the current status of your application, and how you can set breakpoints and tracepoints to generate debugging information. This chapter goes beyond what is provided out-of-the-box, and looks at how you can customize the debugging experience to reduce the time spent wading through unnecessary lines of code.

Using debugging proxy types and visualizers, you can represent complex variables and data types in a useful way within the debugger. This allows you to filter out unnecessary information and zero in on the most relevant properties of an object, thereby making it easier to determine when your application is not functioning correctly and to trace ...

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