Visual Studio 2008 Professional

To create a new C++ project, go to File>New>Project, under 'Project Types' select Visual C++, select a template (e.g. 'Empty Project') and choose a name.

To compile a program, go to Build>Build Solution. This will place the .exe file in the 'Projects/ProjectName/Debug folder' as 'ProjectName.exe'. The Projects folder should be in 'My Documents/Visudal Studio 2008/Projects', this can be changed by going to Tools>Options>Projects and Solutions. Errors and warnings will be on the 'Error List' tab on the bottom, next to the 'Output' tab.

To run a program, go to Debug>Start Debugging or Start without debugging. You may have to rebuild (recompile) the program if you've changed it since the last build.

By default, the Solution Explorer groups files into folders (e.g. Header, Source). These are not real folders, they are for Visual Studio. To see the real files, click on the 'Show All Files' icon. To go back to the default view, click the icon again.

If you accidentally close some windows, you can restore them in Window>Reset Window Layout. Or click on that window's icon on the top right toolbar.


To connect to a remote server or existing web site, go to File>New>Web Site, select Empty Web Site, change 'Location' to 'FTP' and enter the FTP address (e.g. You can then open this solution by going to Open>Project/Solution, and selecting the needed '.sln' file.

To refresh the folder you can click the refresh icon in the Solution Explorer, or right click on the FTP address and choose 'Refresh Folder' on the lower half of the panel. To add a new file, right click on the address and select 'Add New Item'. Notable template options include Text File (.txt), HTML page (.html), Style Sheet (.css), and Web Form (.aspx).


One great feature of Visual Studio is autoformatting. You can autoformat code by highlighting the code (e.g. CTRL+A), then hitting CTRL+K followed by CTRL+F. This will format your code.

To display line numbers, go to Tools>Options and expand the 'Text Editor' item, then select 'All Languages' and check the 'Line Numbers' box. You can alternatively choose to display line numbers for select languages only.

To change the keyboard shortcuts, go to Tools>Options>Environment>Keyboard. Then select a command (search by entering part of the command's name, but don't hit enter), select 'Global' for all windows, and press the shortcut key while in the box. Then hit 'Assign'.