Productivity Power Tools


A set of extensions to Visual Studio Professional (and above) which improves developer productivity.

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by Ed (DareDevil57) | August 14 2014

by Barry Seymour | June 18 2014

I have to say I HATE the new find/replace dialog in VS 2013. This pack brings that awful dialog to Visual Studio 2010.

Alan Cooper, the father of the original Visual Basic, said the functionality of the programs you write must be 'discoverable.' Microsoft has been moving further and further away from this over the past ten years. First they hid the underlining under menu shortcut keys. Then they hid the menus by default in Windows. Then they added ribbons with godawful three-part (or more)keyboard shortcuts.

Now we have this ridiculously minimal and buggy find / replace dialog. What are the keyboard shortcuts to specify things like 'search by entire word' or 'match case?' No where to be found! You have to click with the mouse to drop down the options, then select one. Too many clicks, too tiny a font. Very often after making such selections, the enter key does not initiate the search -- have to press F3. I hate hate hate it.

I uninstalled this productivity pack just because it made those changes to the find/replace dialog in VS 2010.

by bcollie | June 13 2014

Pinned tabs are great and the solution navigator is pretty good as well. I would like to see the files sorted when Open, Unsaved or Edited filters are active.

by Shreeharsh Ambli | April 17 2014

essential for older VS version for sure

by afasfdadsfgsafwef | March 21 2014

Tab well colors and grouping are very helpful. Only additional feature I would like to see added would be a multilevel tab well when it is in the top or bottom position (like in the Tabs Studio extension, see link). Having the tabs on the side wastes a lot of screen space and you still can't read long file names.

by diffS | March 11 2014

I wish the Solution Navigator search should be increase the Speed and should Support wild card along with camel Case search.

by Johnny Frits | February 25 2014

The tool is very good but after installing Productivity Power Tools was not possible to navigate within the expression editor in the file .rdlc (Report) using the arrow keys. This impaired enough.
This can be changed now or is an error that needs correcting?

by leitheim | January 27 2014

This is just EXCELLENT add-on tool. It helps me to do exactly what I need in my development. I just started to use it and I'm charmed, we will see what is going to happen after some time as I had experienced some issues with add-ons regarding the cached data and slowness after certain time of use.
For now this is exactly what I needed and I hope it will stay stable and fast as it was the first time I opened the feature.
Keep up the excellent work and Thanks a bunch!!!!

by KJS100 | January 24 2014

OpenXML editor is suppose to open a document, excel spreadsheet...
(if you drag them into VS) in the various XML parts.
I try this it opens EXCEL or WORD....
WHAT needs to be turned ON to make it open the XML Parts?
Yes, Productivity Power tools have been installed
(and uninstalled and reinstalled) many times. VS has been closed
and reopened many times.

by Eugene Astafiev | December 07 2013

by Dave_Bur | November 21 2013

by Allen Luther | November 05 2013

that's a great tool and I use this a lot in the VS2012.
But now I am using VS2013, is there any update plan for the VS2013?

by Leonardo Lourenço Silva | October 31 2013

Excellent tool !!!
Essential to all developers !!!

by Bruno Maestro | October 24 2013

With MySql database when I select the option it does not save my password every time I do the reverse must report all data.

by SegaWang | September 23 2013

Perfect tool~
PS: Is it possible for VS2008 ?

by michal_bb | September 18 2013

Productivity Power Tools == Essential VS Tools

by Gabriel Mongeon | September 06 2013

by n41ng | July 25 2013

Great extension but had to sometimes disable the searchable reference dialog feature when adding references as it causes this error

The given assembly name or codebase was invalid. (Exception from HRESEULT:0x80131047)

by JonPen | July 24 2013

This plugin seems to access all the database connections in the server explorer, i noticed this as one of the connections was not using windows authentication and i had not saved the password. so each time i righclicked a project and selected propeties the connection dialog appeared on a databse that is not related to that project or any in the solution. I not sure why this plugin might need to access all my databases, but as a precaution i will not be using this plugin as it makes me nervious.

0/10 Scary black helicopters

by Guibhz | July 23 2013

great extension

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  • Productivity Power Tools remove unused imports error
    3 Posts | Last post December 14, 2012
    • I recieve an error when trying to use the "Remove Unused Imports"
      "Unabel to cast COM object of type 'System._ComObject' to interface type 'VSLangProj.VSProject.' The operation failed because the QueryInterface call on th COM component for the interface IID {...}failed due to the folling error: No Such interface supported (Exceptions from HRESULT:0x80004002 (E_NOINTERFACE))
    • I am facing the same issue, ddi you find the solution?
    • Me too, has anyone solved this? It's one of the main reasons that I installed the power tools.
  • Add ability to cycle through all open document left to right or right to left
    1 Posts | Last post December 10, 2012
    • This is very old request. All tabbed browsers works this way.
      Window.NextDocumentWellTab (in vs 2010) and Window.NextTab only cycle the documents on the visible tabs.
      At least when we select "Enable scrolling" for document well, Window.NextTab should cycle all open document.
  • Close all unpinned document command need
    1 Posts | Last post December 10, 2012
    • First. This is great extension for visual studio.
      Second. I need special command "close all unpinned document". Because visual studio "CloseAll" command closes Pinned tabs. 
      Thank you
  • Solution Navigator Problem?
    2 Posts | Last post December 05, 2012
    • In the solution navigator, I cannot move to any property's code location through it. No problem in the case of methods. How can I fix this? I'm using Visual Studio 2010 Professional SP1.
    • I mean, This solution navigator is the window which is shown when pressing ctrl + 2 keys. Surely it doesn't work for a few properties(attributes). The symtom is as below:
      1. Type the name of property : Text 
      2. Select that row by pressing up/down arrow keys
      3. Press enter key
      4. Only changes ▶ to ▼ and cannot move to the proper location
  • Solution Navigator - Folders not sorted
    1 Posts | Last post November 20, 2012
    • Please fix the sorting in the solution navigator. I currently have a folder called Services with unsorted subfolders in this order: Agent; Service; Clients; DTO; Contract; Proxy. I am using "open" files view.
  • Lost SQL Editor for custom file extensions
    1 Posts | Last post November 15, 2012
    • Using VS2012, I have set up custom extensions for db related files that my company uses (.tab,.prc, etc.) and defined those to work with the DB Tools / TSQL Editor.
      Things were perfect.
      Yesterday, I installed the Productivuty Power Tools, and I have lost the ability to use the SQL editor for those files. The SQL toolbar is not present, and the file has no color coding. It is just a plain old text file.
      Even after I unistalled the tools, my functionality is still lost.
      Has anyone experienced this behavior? What is a fix?
  • Fix Mixed Tabs suggestions
    1 Posts | Last post November 13, 2012
    • I work in a mixed-mode environment all the time, C++ and Python.  This causes a few unexpected problems with Fix Mixed Tabs.
      1) Fix Mixed Tabs will fix mixed tabs, but when it does, it touches every line in the file, which means that Enhanced Scroll bar now shows every line is green.  This is counter productive as I can no longer see the changes I actually made.  It would be better if Fix Mixed Tabs would only modify lines that actually need modification.
      2) We use tabs in C but we mostly use spaces in Python, and it occurred to me that this Power Tool would be greatly enhanced if it did a bit of analysis on the file it was editing and was able to set the tab-inserts-spaces/tabs setting based on the contents of the current file instead of a global setting.  If tab just did the right thing, Fix Mixed Tabs wouldn't needed as much.
  • Crash on Exit
    1 Posts | Last post November 09, 2012
    • Visual Studio 2010 always crashes on exit. What can I do? It's Visual Studio 2010 Pro.
  • Visual Studio 2012
    77 Posts | Last post November 08, 2012
    • Will a new version of the Productivity Power Tools come out for VS2012?
      Just playing around with VS2012 and although a lot of features have made it to the the main editor, there's still lots missing.
    • I'm also hoping to see this extension updated for VS2012. The feature I'm missing the most is the enhanced quick info tooltip. It's a real time saver!
    • Yes - I agree, the enhanced quick info tooltip is wonderful and not having it in VS2012 seems like a sad step backwards.  Please bring this to VS2012! 
    • +1 for requesting that the enhanced quick info tool tip be made available for VS2012.
    • Can't work with VS2012 without Enhanced Scrollbar and Enhanced Quick Info Tooltip, to painfull to loose them.
    • I'm suffering the lack of the "Enhanced Scrollbar" too, please add it soon!!!
    • Enhanced scrollbar badly needed in VS2012...
    • +1 for me too, I'm really missing vertical tabs and tab colouring. (Note: you can hack the 2010 package and install it on vs11 to get the enhanced scrollbar, this doesn't work for tabwells though)
    • +1 also. Enhanced scroll bar, tab colouring, ctrl + click go to definition, all necessary! If VS2012 doesn't get this soon, I'll favour 2010 instead.
    • +1 more - missing vertical tabs especially as that works well with my widescreen monitor.
    • +4 Can you give us an vs2012 version or make it open source then we can build the missing features for vs2012!!!
      Please, and please very fast...
    • Another +1 for vertical tab wells in 2012.  
    • Missing this extension a lot in VS2012. Honestly, who wants to move lines with cut and paste?
    • +1 for VS2012 version, especially vertical tab well and enhanced scrollbar.
    • +1 2012
    • I also would very much like to see vertical tabs and enhanced scroll bar in VS2012. Please consider to make a version also for VS2012, or make this code open source and let the community help out!
    • +1. I'm missing lot of old features as well. Tabify, Quick find in output window. The new quick find and replace in the editor sucks compared to this one. Please, please don't kill this addin.
    • Please vote for this issue to make MS hear us:
    • +1 I really miss the enhanced scroll bar!!!
    • +1 Enhanced Scrollbar!
    • +1. Can't use VS2012 without this much needed extension set. Please make our lives easier soon <3
    • Last update older than one year, and no proof of life from the authors. Please, release the source code, it will be an excellent tutorial for developpers, and we may port to VS 2012 and by the same way get rid of the morbid design of VS 2012, there is no way to work with VS 2012 in its current state, almost all black and white, limits between tabs invisibles, edge of windows invisibles, no more the enhanced scrollbar, etc.
    • I agree. Mostly I miss the Enhanced Scrollbar. 
    • +1 for 2012 version
    • We need a VS2012 Version right MEOW
    • +1 for a 2012 version--especially the enhanced scroll bar and the Alt-Up/Down feature.
    • +1 for a vs2012 version. This is a must have plugin... I miss the enhanced quicktip too much.. and the color coded tabs
    • Another +1. Can you open the source? I'll do the work myself.
    • +1 for VS2012, you don't realize how much you rely on something until you don't have it anymore!
    • +1 for VS2012, where lots of useful PowerTools features are missing.
    • +1 for VS2012, almost useless without enhanced scrollbar ;)
    • +1 for VS 20120, not finding Line Move Up/Down Commands... I really love those commands. 
    • +1 for vertical tabs.. I can't go back to just having 9/10 files visible...
    • +1000  for VS2012 please!!!
      (Or open source it in codeplex)
    • +1 for VS2012 support!
    • +1 count me
    • +1 for me, too. I really liked dpugh's extension AllMargins, especially the ehanced scrollbar. (Really, I think PowerTools should include the AllMargins extension outright, as I preferred that implementation over VS PowerTools' similar implementations (which also seemed buggy)). I definitely miss the enhanced quick info tip, and the automatic Brace/Parenthesy/Quote/etc... completion.
    • I really miss the enhanced scrollbar in VS2012 but it looks like no one is maintaining this tool. Has it been orphaned? Is there any process to get it opened to other developers?! I'd certainly be delighted to work on getting this moved forward (and it looks like there are plenty of others equally eager!)
    • It's not quite the same thing (only because it was created first and merged into Productivity Power Tools later), but you can get the same type of functionality from the 2010 AllMargins Extension (although it looks like it has been removed and only an older version is available here:  It is a little difficult to configure though, use this blog for help in that matter:
    • +1 for me, too on the 2012 version.  Let's not forget the little things like "Fix mixed tabs" and "Align Assignments" for us neat-freaks.
    • My entire floor of developers is missing the enhanced scrollbar in VS2012.  I can't believe that wasn't integrated into VS2012 proper!
    • +1 2012
    • +1
    • Vertical tabs is a must!
    • Can't work with VS2012 without Enhanced Scrollbar too! Please, add support for Visual Studio 2012!
    • I will be also happy to see this extension to be ready for VS2012.
    • +1. I really miss enhanced scrollbar and the move-line-function. The productivity gain with the enhanced scrollbar was unbelievable. Please build this for VS 2012! 
    • +1 Enhanced Scrollbar. Terrible to work without. I'll use vs 2010 as long as there's no enhanced scrollbar in vs 2012...
    • @utdavemc Check out my extension "Code Alignment" it's much more powerful than "Align Assignments" -
    • It´s there any official reply to the lack of this extension in Visual Studio 2012?
    • Yet another +1 vote to getting a 2012 version.
    • Another +4 vote.  I didn't realize how much i missed enhanced scrollbar until it was ripped away from us.
    • Another +1...just installed 2012 and was horrified to see there isn't a PPT version for it yet...
    • +1 vote for 2012 version.  I need it now!
    • +1... 
    • I vote for 2012 version too!
    • +1 Vote for 2012 version...
    • +1...really missing some of the tools.
    • Its coming!!! Productivity Power Tools for Visual Studio 2012 announced:
    • I also need it in VS 2012.
      The most usable thing is ctrl+click to go to definition/implementation.
    • @Juozas - Thanks for pointing me to the announcement! Which said, "New Productivity Power Tools for Visual Studio 2012: Additional tools and command line utilities that will be available for download in October 2012.". It's October - Where are they? :-)
      (As we all know... Customers think Oct is 1 Oct... the dev team thinks 31 Oct)
    • +1 VS2012
    • Guys, I really miss "Vertical Tabs" ...
    • Enhanced Scrollbar is available as separate extension inside this archive _
    • alexeysolonets: where did this come from?
    • Update the extension for VS2012 or (if it is no longer maintained) release the source code.
    • +1 VS2012... really really missing the enhanced scrollbar
    • Any Info on when the 2012 version will be released? I know they said October at some point, and it is fast approaching the end.....
      I mainly miss the colored tabs and most importantly the Shift+Enter shortcut (I know its a small thing but so worth it)
    • Please upvote it on Connect. At least Microsoft posting official comments there ;-)
      If you cannot get it via direct url - go thru Feedback -> "Most voted" and look/search for 'productivity'
    • There's also a Facebook page they used to watch... at least someone will get posts there in their inbox.
    • They said "early October", but they don't specify the year: it's perhaps for 2013 :-)
    • > We announced at launch, that Productivity Power Tools will be available in early October.
      > Stay tuned!" -Murali
      Now, what?
      We will have "early" November in 5 days from now.
    • Yes me too.
      I'm missing many features.
      One of them is Alt+Arrow to move line up/down. Very essential feature.
    • I Miss Ctrl + Click Go To Definition option in VS 2012. Please release 2012 Version Soon. Thanks. 
    • Me too!
    • VS2012 version is released here:
      Regards, Michael
    • Why doesn't solution navigator show the PROJECT when you type to search for it??
  • Workaround for Vertical Tab feature in VS 2012
    2 Posts | Last post November 02, 2012
    • I have found a workaround for the vertical tab feature in this extension, for use in VS 2012.
      I was able to come close to getting what I want by doing the following:
      ) In the Solution Explorer, right-click on your project and find the "New Solution Explorer View" menu item. This creates a new and separate Solution Explorer.
      ) Dock the new Solution Explorer on the left.
      ) At the top of the new explorer, find the icon next to the "Home" (house-shaped) icon, which looks like a document icon and has a dropdown associated with it. Click on that dropdown, and select "Open Files Filter". This will restrict this particular Solution Explorer to only show open files.
      This keeps your projects and open files in alphabetical order, on the left, for easy reference and access. You can use the original Solution Explorer like you always did. Until this extension is updated, this seems to be working for me.
    • Thanks a lot, great tip! :-)
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