One of the less well known features in Visual Studio are the snippets -
fragments of code ready for insertion into your code at a moments notice. In
Visual Studio 2005, the
prop snippet was a very useful way to declare new
class properties, but in Visual Studio 2008 they crippled it. Since you can
create your own snippets, I created a better version of
propthat works the
way I want.
In Visual Studio 2005, the
prop snippet expanded into a full property
declaration, including a member variable for underlying storage.
I found the
prop snippet extremely useful as a base to work from. For
example, when writing complex classes that implement
I’d use this snippet as a base and then add the required code to trigger the
PropertyChanged event when required.
In Visual Studio 2008, however, they evidently assumed that people never customised the output of the prop snippet, as the expansion has changed considerably:
While automatic property implementation is fairly cool, I’ve found this version of the prop snippet to be much less useful.
Fortunately, you’re not restricted to the snippets that come out of the box - you can create your own. For full details on how to do this, check out the MSDN page Creating Code Snippets
In my case, since I’m so often wanting to include support for the
PropertyChanged event, I decided to create a snippet that already includes the
code required. I’ve called it
propn - short for
Here’s how the snippet expands:
Since I use a convention that the name of the member variable matches the name
of the property, prefixed with
m for member, this snippet has only two
fields - property type and property name. You can see that support for the
PropertyChanged event is built in, including the necessary logic to only
trigger the event if the value assigned is different. Finally, the whole
property is wrapped in a region of its own - this is so I can collapse the
property down in the Visual Studio editor when I’m not interested in the
If you’re interested in using the
propn snippet, download the zip file.