Web Essentials 2012


Adds many useful features to Visual Studio for web developers.

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by Caio Vilas Boas | December 07 2012

The TypeScript Regions feature is awesome! Love it :)

by Joshua.Rocha | December 07 2012

Is there a way to make a squiggly line go away without changing my code? I understand that there are more vendor prefixes I could use, but if my project is only supporting webkit, I would REALLY like to make that squiggly line go away. Please, please, PLEASE put an option to ignore or even an option to disable "alert for vendor prefixes" in the future.

I firmly believe that any squiggly line that comes up in anything should be able to be removed after user consideration. I know this is a great extension, but just like Microsoft Word doesn't always have better grammar than I do, this extension should take my input.

Thank you for the phenomenal extension and all your hard work!! :)

Mads Kristensen December 23 2012
| Edit |

In version 2.2 you can select which browsers to support and the CSS editor will adjust accordingly with the correct validation and auto-generated vendor specifics. Just right-click in the CSS editor to open the browser selector

by Paul Mason | December 07 2012

Very impressive :)

There seems to be an issue in the Zen Coding support with lists containing sibling elements. e.g. div>ul>li*5>span+div only adds the nested div to the first li, and not the other 4. Nesting the sibling elements in a container div doesn’t work either (div>ul>li*5>div>span+div).

by Kenneth Scott | December 07 2012


by subkamran | December 06 2012

I would give this 5 stars, but as an licensed Mindscape user, I think I will need to disable WE 2012. The reason is, while I can disable compiling and previewing LESS from WE, it still messes with the syntax highlighting and parsing of the LESS files (since that's what Mindscape does).

Mads, I would give you 10 stars if you could either a) detect Mindscape and prompt/automatically disable LESS handling or b) allow me to fully disable LESS handling in WE options.

It should be noted also, I work on a team, so it would also be nice to save a local set of WE settings or something (which is why I mentioned automatically disabling LESS handling).

Mads Kristensen December 06 2012
| Edit |

Unfortunately, I can't turn off LESS editor support dynamically. We (the ASP.NET team) is shipping the LESS editor officially early 2013. That can't be turned off either. Is there a reason you prefer Mindscape's LESS editor over Web Essentials'?

I've just released new LESS editor component in the nightly build. Try it here: http://madskristensen.net/post/Web-Essentials-nightly-builds.aspx

Local WE settings are supported and so are solution based settings. That was introduced in version 1.9

by UnnDunn | December 06 2012

There aren't enough stars on this site to give a high enough rating for this plugin. If you are a front-end web developer, this should be the FIRST extension you install for Visual Studio 2012.

by Suresh Babu | December 06 2012

Must have for web dev.

by Davide Mencarelli | December 05 2012

by selap | December 03 2012

LESS editing is awesome. Thank you so much.

by Rhysling1 | December 03 2012

The only downside of moving from VS2010 to 2012 was the lack of Web Essentials. Thank you, Mads!!

by Andreas Schulz | December 02 2012

Hi Mads,

that's great... congrats!

by jtlowe | November 30 2012

So far, Web Essentials has been a very useful and productive tool. It makes VS that much better, and I'm surprised half of the functionality isn't already integrated into the core VS application. I like the flexibility of the plugin though and quick responses to bugs and features.

by WBrianG | November 30 2012

This is the most useful, well-maintained Visual Studio plugin I have ever used.

by maverick_rules | November 29 2012

This extension is really, really well done! Particularly like the extensive configuration options which allows me to combine this tool in my IDE with a build-time compiler/minifier like Cassette.

by WorkAByte | November 29 2012

by AaronLewis_GP | November 29 2012

Wouldn't code without it!

by Jarrett Vance | November 29 2012

Makes visual studio crash often when working with less files.

Mads Kristensen November 29 2012
| Edit |

This is fixed in version 1.9.2. I hope you'll give it another try

by Kristian Thrane | November 28 2012

This is simply a fantastic tool!

by Tomekole | November 28 2012

Awesome extension! Thanks!

by JM_MSDN | November 27 2012

This is absolutely, hands-down, the BEST Visual Studio extension for web development. The only thing more amazing than this extension is the rate at which Mads pushes out new features and bug fixes!

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  • compatibility with MSBuild?
    3 Posts | Last post April 11, 2014
    • Can LESS files be compiled while building with MSBuild on the command line?
    • ~~ I send this question...... Can everything is great but can I do this from the command prompt? (I'm sure there's a way but is there doc's anywhere?)
    • ~~ Typo: I second this***
  • Crash on build - Conflict with TypeScript?
    1 Posts | Last post March 17, 2014
    • This has been happen for a while, but happens more with TS0.9.5 (we haven't upgraded to 1.0 yet).  I am not sure why by it appears WebEssentails is still trying to process TypeScript files?
      Application: devenv.exe
      Framework Version: v4.0.30319
      Description: The process was terminated due to an unhandled exception.
      Exception Info: System.IO.IOException
         at System.IO.__Error.WinIOError(Int32, System.String)
         at System.IO.FileStream.Init(System.String, System.IO.FileMode, System.IO.FileAccess, Int32, Boolean, System.IO.FileShare, Int32, System.IO.FileOptions, SECURITY_ATTRIBUTES, System.String, Boolean, Boolean, Boolean)
         at System.IO.FileStream..ctor(System.String, System.IO.FileMode, System.IO.FileAccess, System.IO.FileShare, Int32, System.IO.FileOptions, System.String, Boolean, Boolean, Boolean)
         at System.IO.StreamReader..ctor(System.String, System.Text.Encoding, Boolean, Int32, Boolean)
         at System.IO.File.InternalReadAllText(System.String, System.Text.Encoding, Boolean)
         at System.IO.File.ReadAllText(System.String)
         at MadsKristensen.EditorExtensions.TypeScriptMargin+<>c__DisplayClass12.<UpdateMargin>b__10()
         at System.Windows.Threading.ExceptionWrapper.InternalRealCall(System.Delegate, System.Object, Int32)
         at MS.Internal.Threading.ExceptionFilterHelper.TryCatchWhen(System.Object, System.Delegate, System.Object, Int32, System.Delegate)
         at System.Windows.Threading.DispatcherOperation.InvokeImpl()
         at System.Windows.Threading.DispatcherOperation.InvokeInSecurityContext(System.Object)
         at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.RunInternal(System.Threading.ExecutionContext, System.Threading.ContextCallback, System.Object, Boolean)
         at ... more
  • LessHat Issues.
    1 Posts | Last post January 31, 2014
    • I cannot get my LESS to compile when including the LESSHAT mixins (http://lesshat.com/). These mixins use javascript in them but I would have thought that the version of LESS included in Web Essentials would have evaluated it. There isn't even any errors created to indicate what might be failing. It would be such a shame to not have access to this great set of mixins.
  • JSHint: indent option not working
    1 Posts | Last post January 13, 2014
    • If I enable JSHint and set the indent option to 2 (or any other number), I don't get any JSHint errors. Other options seem to work fine.
      If I enable the option by adding the following to the .js file: /*jshint indent:2 */, then it works, but this is not the solution we want as options should be set in one place, not each JS file. Is there a way to get this indent option working without having to set it in each JS file?
      Also it reports errors for switch case indentation, which I believe have been fixed in a newer version of JSHint (2.2.0). Are there any plans to update the version of JSHint used by Web Essentials 2012?
      Finally Web Essentials 2013 was updated to use the .jshintrc options file, are there any plans of including this in 2012?
  • Build | Web Essentials | Update All Bundles
    6 Posts | Last post December 03, 2013
    • When I select Build | Web Essentials | Update All Bundles I receive an error:
      The parameter is incorrect. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80070057 (E_INVALIDARG))
      I just updated to version 3.3.5 today.  Prior to this, the bundles were not updating when a source file changed.  They are still not updating and I receive the above error.
    • same error here :(
    • I receive the same issue, updating a file does not update the bundled files. This seems to get worse after install update 4 for VS2012. Also, selecting Update All Bundles generates the same error referenced by @jdubsmith
    • Where can I find older versions of Web Essentials? It seems like people are down grading to v3.2 to fix the JS bundling issue. 
    • See:
      for more details. Downgrading to v3.2 fixes the issue for me as well.
    • older versions here, must guess the version number :)
  • JS bundles broken in 3.3
    5 Posts | Last post December 03, 2013
    • JS bundles seem to be broken in 3.3. Once I downgraded to 3.2, they started working again.
    • Yeh, same problem here!
    • same
    • +1
    • same here. 3.3.5 broke the bundle updates. going to 3.2.0 seems to solve the issue.
  • JavaScript XMLDoc comment scaffolding Stopped Working
    1 Posts | Last post December 02, 2013
    • JavaScript XMLDoc comment scaffolding has stopped working for me
      I am using VS 2012 and WE 2012 v3.3.5
      I installed visual studio update 4 to see if that would fix it but no luck
      I also tried VS 2013 with WE 2013 but it doesnt work there either
  • no automatic minification in typescript project
    2 Posts | Last post November 30, 2013
    • It's a great tool, however the current version (3.3.5 with VS2012 update 4 and typescript ) does not created minified js automatically in typescript projects.
      I have tried many previous versions of webessentials back to 2.9 and different ways of including the ts and js files into the project, either as DependentUpon liek this
      <TypeScriptCompile Include="app.ts" />
      <Content Include="Scripts\app.js">
      or as included on the folder level.
      <TypeScriptCompile Include="app.ts" />
      <Content Include="app.js" />
      When typescript compiles the ts to js, webessentials does not trigger the minification; when I then open the js file and save it manually at some point webesssentials might build the min.js version (eratic as far as I can see), but this will also add the new file to the project tree, from then on webessentials will not update the min.js again. Doing a project rebuild will not automatically minify.
      I can reproduce this with the standard typescipt project template.
    • I just realized, that when manually saving the js file, webessentials will (!) create/update the minified version. But this does not happen when the typscript compiler updates the js file. 
      This makes it necessary to go manually through all your compiled js files and save them before publishing a release (bundled) project. 
      Also the js files are not by default included in the typescript project so one first has to include these js files to be able to create the minified versions.
  • LESS minification to css and min.css not working in 1.3.1
    1 Posts | Last post November 27, 2013
    • I cannot get a LESS file to minify to .css (and .min.css) in Visual Studio 2013 Premium. I'm using Web Essentials 1.3.1. This was working fine in Visual Studio 2012? Is this a bug? (Note: When I right-click a less file, I see a "Minify CSS file(s)" option, but it's grayed out.)
  • circular compiling
    2 Posts | Last post November 20, 2013
    • Having saved ONE FILE (inside of .bundle) WebEssentials saves/updates all other bundles.
      The log:
      11/20/2013 4:23:46 PM: Updating bundle: 1.js
      11/20/2013 4:23:47 PM: Updating bundle: 2.js
      <here pops an error window about script not found, starting with "/">
      11/20/2013 4:23:52 PM: Updating bundle: 1.css
      11/20/2013 4:24:16 PM: Updating bundle: 1.js
      11/20/2013 4:24:20 PM: Updating bundle: 1.css
      If one have over 9000 bundles it will crash everything. Is there a setting to update only *currently* saved bundle-file?
      Could be "/" at the beginning of the path related (version 1.3.1 16.11.2013)
    • Sorry ignore, that concerns VS2013
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