[MonoDevelop] Moving to MSBuild

Michael Hutchinson m.j.hutchinson at gmail.com
Sun May 18 22:07:18 EDT 2008

On Sun, May 18, 2008 at 4:43 PM, "Andrés G. Aragoneses"
<knocte at gmail.com> wrote:
> Thanks Mike, now all is much clearer. Just two more (simple) questions:
> - Will VS be able to open a C# project file if MD is developed in such a
> way that uses ".proj" instead of ".csproj" (for simplicity)?

AFAICT, Visual Studio will only load the extensions it generates, i.e.
.csproj etc. However, you could use these extensions for other
languages, e.g. use .csproj for C/C++ as well as C#. The key thing is
the content of the files; the exact extension name is insignificant
except to the VS "open" dialog.

Apart from this, MS claims that "almost any project in the MSBuild
format" can be used in VS. The following page explains more:

> - Does MSBuild contain an standard (different than the .sln format,
> which you said was not part of it) for solutions? It's not clear to me
> yet why this type of files are not XML-based yet...

Good question; I'm not completely sure. I think that the concept of a
"solution" isn't really required for a build system, and is a
convenience for IDEs. It's basically just a list of "projects" that
the IDE opens in one go. It also provides an environement for
resolving project references BUT this is any because the C#/VB
references resolution tasks do it this way. MSBuild's aware of it but
I don't think it's really a core feature as such.

Think of them sort of like xml Makefiles. There's no such thing as a
Makefile "solution" :-)

Michael Hutchinson

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