Visual Studio has in the past allowed us to set how many projects are displayed when we have a view of recent work. In Visual Studio 2010, that feature is extended further with the ability to “pin” frequently used projects to our list.
The recent projects list is displayed in the Visual Studio start page, if you have that option turned on (it is by default. If you have turned it off, you can restore the start page by navigating to Tools –> Options and then to the Environment –> Startup property page.
You get the thumbtack icon when you hover over a project item. Click it to have it stick around. Below is hover state of an unpinned item.
Also, in the flavour of ‘handy’ is the ability to control how many items appear in the Recent Projects list. I mentioned this earlier so here’s how to do that. Above I have 6 showing, which is set under Tools –> Options in the Environment –> General property page.
I am fortunate enough to have a good sized monitor, so I like the ability to fill the white space on the Start Page with about a dozen or so recent projects.
This Ain’t Your Daddy’s IDE
But then, chances are, there are few of us with Daddies who had IDEs. But, I digress…
I’m using Visual Studio 2010 about 80% of the time right now, but still hanging on to 2008 for a couple of projects that aren’t playing nicely. With simple, trivial but yet productive time-saving features like this and others, it’s been the easiest switch of IDEs for this 12 year vet to the industry.
Here are some other suggestions I had, including my first mention of Project Pinning.