Coding Without Resharper

Davy Brion asked if his readers could go back to not using Resharper.  Sadly, I don’t have to imagine this.  I deal with this on a regular basis.

You see, although my firm has enough Resharper licences to go around, many developers just plain don’t like it.  The objection is simple: it slows up the dev environment.  This isn’t an idle objection either: the slowdown is real.  I think we’ll probably have to wait for VS2010’s new extension model to see a proper fix for this.

However, personally I think the performance cost is incredibly worth it, because it saves my cycles even if it doesn’t save the processor’s cycles.  Little things that I use all the time:

  • Generate a field from a constructor parameter.  (Alt-Enter Enter)
  • Generate a property from a field.  (Alt-Enter Enter)
  • Automatically add a new interface method to an implementation.  (Alt-Enter Enter)
  • Find Usages (Shift-F12)
  • Find current file in solution explorer (Alt-Shift-L)
  • Implement Interface (Alt-Enter Enter)
  • Generate Method Stub (Alt-Enter Enter)
  • Add parameter to function when you changed a call to it.  (You guessed it: Alt-Enter Enter)

That’s without mentioning the “Automatically Add Namespace” feature.  (Alt-Enter Enter or just click on the tool-tip.)  This single feature probably saves a good five to ten minutes when dealing with an unfamiliar code base.  Just try grabbing most of the code samples from blogs and getting them to compile without this feature.

Before Resharper, one of my big secrets as a developer was that I could remember a lot of the mechanical edits I needed to make to effect a change.  Now, I spend more of my time thinking about what my code actually does, rather than how to wire it up correctly.

So, what’s it like without Resharper?  In a word, mechanical.  Code just gets stuck together slower.  You find yourself constantly writing bottom up code to help out intellisense.  Until you can’t remember what namespace a type is in.  At which point you spend your time guessing and googling something that would take would have taken under a second to correct with R#.

Now, if only they could fix that really annoying hang when you first delete a file…

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Julian Birch

Full time dad, does a bit of coding on the side.

One thought on “Coding Without Resharper”

  1. Heh, I do the exact same thing to create a class. It’s much faster to just get typing and worry about file creation later. Particularly when you spend a while deciding on the name of the class…And no, I doubt I need a beefier machine (although others in my teams may). I kid you not, I’m running a quad-core Xeon here. It may be a function of my solution size, though. There are solutions here that run to forty projects. As far as I can tell, when you delete a file, it parses the entire solution to see if there are any side-effects. I imagine some of these things will be fixed by VS2010’s new code model.

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