Monday, May 27, 2013

ReSharper free alternative

For a while I was using ReSharper but soon I had to find out that the price and performance of the tool just does not compensate for the features it provides. On a larger solution it just got slower and slower and even though the performance was kind of acceptable it just did not feel right. So I decided to find free alternatives for ReSharper, especially for features that I was really using: quickly jump to files, coloured tabs and organising the 'using' sections.

Quickly opening files

Probably the most frequently used feature of ReSharper (or at least for me) is to quickly open a file by its name. There are several free plugins that can help you with this but PhatStudio was the fastest and most convenient to use. Simply pressing ALT+O will bring up the dialog and ready to start typing fragments you are looking for: "cu or" for instance would find "CustomerOrder.cs" file. No need for fancy wildcarding, the authors got it perfect. Thanks for this free and open source plugin!

Useful tweaks

Even though I covered the most important feature, I wanted to add little extras here and there to help making coding a bit more fun. Although I would like to highlight that adding these extras will not make me a better/faster/more bug free/happier coder - they are just nice to have! Similarly, buying NCrunch license will not make you a better programmer - but that's a longer story.  

One of the most useful plugins I've found was Productivity Power Tools created by Microsoft. This will give you features like CTRL+click to jump to declaration, auto complete braces, advanced scrollbar with a lot of visual markers, clear unused & sort 'using's, find similar code in solution (Find Matching Clones), colour tabs based on file type, auto format code on saving. None of these are really ground braking but I guess they can help to make coding a bit less tedious.

Give these plugins a go, maybe you will find the free ReSharper too :)


  1. > Probably the most frequently used feature of ReSharper is to quickly open a file by its name

    You should use Notepad++ instead, the price is muuuuch lower.

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