Hibri Marzook Musings on technology and systems thinking

Avoid the slow Add Reference dialog box in Visual Studio 2008


When you are in the zone, and want to add a reference to Rhino, NUnit or any other common reference, adding it via the Add Reference dialog can be painfully slow. Fortunately VS has a good automation interface, which lets you to write macros.

I wrote a simple macro to add a NUnit reference to the current project. Add this to your Macros project in Visual Studio, map a button or a shortcut key to it. This way you can add those common references pretty quick.

This is a cleaned up version of the sample here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/vslangproj80.reference3%28VS.80%29.aspx


   1:      Sub AddNUnitReference()
   2:          AddNewReference(DTE, "C:\Tools\NUnit\nunit.framework.dll")
   3:      End Sub
   5:      Sub AddNewReference(ByVal dte As DTE2, ByVal referencePath As String)
   6:          Dim aProject As Project
   7:          Dim aVSProject As VSProject
   9:          aProject = dte.ActiveDocument.ProjectItem.ContainingProject
  11:          aVSProject = CType(dte.ActiveDocument.ProjectItem.ContainingProject.Object, VSProject)
  12:          ' Add an Assembly reference and display its type and additional
  13:          ' information.
  14:          Dim newRef As Reference
  15:          newRef = aVSProject.References.Add(referencePath)
  17:      End Sub

By Hibri Marzook

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