Visual Studio Tools Updates
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Thursday, 24 September 2015

Microsoft has updated several developer tools, including TypeScript, Tools for Universal Windows apps, and Tools for Apache Cordova.  


TypeScript 1.6 for Visual Studio is now available for Visual Studio 2015 and Visual Studio 2013, as well as via npm and as source on GitHub.

The new version has new features including support for JSX/React syntax, so if you’re using React you can mix TypeScript code and JSX HTML-like syntax using the new .tsx file extension. In addition to compiler support, you can use the new mixed syntax in Sublime Text, Visual Studio Code, or Visual Studio.

Another improvement is support for abstract classes. This means you can create uninstantiable classes with default function implementations. Class expressions let you declare a class just like any other expression, inline in your code. User defined type guards can be used to create type guard functions using any type or interface. Intersection types and generic type aliases have also been added. Microsoft has also added better error checking on object literals and improved the module resolution for CommonJS users.  


Tools for Universal Windows Apps has been updated to version 1.1, mainly to fix problems reported by developers using Visual Studio 2015 RTM. Several .NET Native fixes have been made, along with fixes related to the XAML designer, unit testing and the debugger. Universal Windows apps are those that run across all Windows 10 devices – Windows phones, tablets, PCs, Xbox, Surface Hub, and any IoT devices running Windows 10. The Visual Studio Tools for Universal Windows Apps adds new project templates to VS, and let you access native device APIs such as camera, calendar, and contacts through JavaScript. Your apps can also use native webviews.  

Tools for Apache Cordova is the third area to be updated, with what, Senior Content Developer for Visual Studio Kraig Brockschmidt describes as:

“dozens of bug fixes along with performance and reliability improvements”.

If you’re using Visual Studio Enterprise, you also get a new ADAL plugin that provides straight-forward authentication for your Apache Cordova apps using Windows Server Active Directory and Windows Azure Active Directory.

One interesting addition is a new command line toolset, Tools for Apache Cordova CLI (a.k.a. “TACO”).



TACO is a command line utility that you can use when creating hybrid apps for Android, iOS, and Windows using Apache Cordova. It does things like install any components you need for the various platforms you’re targeting, and creating working snapshots of everything you need for a particular Cordova version -platforms, build tools, and plug-ins.  


More Information

WinTools 1.1, TypeScript 1.6 RTM, and Tools for Apache Cordova Updates

Announcing TypeScript 1.6

Download TypeScript

TypeScript on GitHub

Download Tools for Universal Windows

Tools for Apache Cordova

Introducing Taco


Related Articles

TypeScript 1.5 Released 

Visual Studio 2015 Launched - Any App Any Developer 

Cordova In Visual Studio


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Last Updated ( Thursday, 24 September 2015 )