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Archive for the ‘misc’ Category

ViEmu/VS 2.2.7 for better Visual Assist interaction

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

I’ve uploaded version 2.2.7 of ViEmu for Visual Studio. The changes in this build only affect interactions with Visual Assist X. For their latest builds, VAX has started intercepting HTML and several XML file types (pure XML, XAML, etc…), in order to provide some of their features there. ViEmu had some provisions from the time they didn’t act on these file types, and I have adapted this provisions to the new situations. It’s necessary to follow these things closely for the best interoperation between ViEmu and Visual Assist (for example, only let VAX pop-up their autocompletion boxes on insert mode, etc…).

It’s possible you will need to have a recent version of Visual Assist X for the new ViEmu to work with it properly. I’ve tested it with a few VAX builds and it works at least equally well for somewhat recent versions, and, for HTML/XML editing, the best is if you use VAX 1707 or later (VAX will enhance editing there).

This ViEmu (and future ones) may not work at all with old versions of VAX. I wouldn’t like to have ViEmu act differently with different VAX releases. For one, I don’t know how to get the build number, they don’t show it in Help|About which would be somewhat accessible. But mainly, having a version-number hack to decide which hacks to turn on and off starts to look too hackish and too much effort for the pay off.  Upgrading to the latest VAX version would fix it. This said, ifyou are stuck with an older version of VAX, you can write to me and try convincing me that I should invest the time to fix this.

Here’s the link to download it:

You needn’t uninstall the previous version, this will auto-upgrade your installation automatically.

I tested this on VS.NET 2003, VS 2005 and VS 2008, with and without VAX, it shouldn’t be problematic for anything else

ViEmu/SQL 2.2.7, fixing SQL Server 2008 compatibility

Saturday, August 30th, 2008

It seems Microsoft changed something between their last preview releases and the final, RTM build of SQL Server 2008, and this broke ViEmu/SQL 2008. Technically, I was QueryInterface’ing the provided application object pointer for a DTE interface, which works for SQL Server 2005 and the preview builds of SQL Server 2008, but didn’t work (returned null) for the final build of SQL Server 2008 Management Studio. I found an alternate method to get to the DTE object: the AddInInstance object has a get_DTE() method which returns the sought-after DTE object. I changed this, checked it to work on both SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2005, and built 2.2.7 fixing this. Here is the link to download it:

This will automatically upgrade your existing installation if there is one.

Happy ViEmu’ing!

Official Announcement – ViEmu 2.2 for VS, SQL, and 1.5 for Word&Outlook

Tuesday, August 26th, 2008

[I sent this email out last week to all current ViEmu and Codekana users, announcing the latest releases and outlining my plans for the near future. If you didn’t receive it but would like to receive future ones (they are few and far between), drop me a line. — Jon]

Hello everyone,

It’s a long time I hadn’t sent out an email to all ViEmu and Codekana customers. Finally, new versions of all the ViEmus are ready, and I thought this would warrant an email. The new versions are 2.2 for Visual Studio, 2.2 for SQL Server too, and 1.5 for Word&Outlook, and you can download them straight from the web site front page
(, or from the links below:

ViEmu/Visual Studio —
ViEmu/SQL Server —
ViEmu/Word&Outlook —

You don’t need to uninstall your current version before installing these ones, they will automatically upgrade any previous installation. By the way, I’ve revamped the build system, and now even minor revisions (of the form 2.2.x) include automatic upgrading. No more manual uninstalling necessary for any revision.

These builds have been tested over the last few weeks by hundreds of people now (it’s been the official download from the home page for over two weeks), so they are very reliable and should not cause any trouble. Just drop me a line if anything acts up.

The major new features are i’/a’/i”/a” text-object motions that allow you to operate on strings, gt/gT to navigate tabs, gp/gP for variations on regular pasting, and several more minor points. Also very important, these versions consolidate all fixes and improvements from 2.1.0 to 2.1.27 revisions in the VS/SQL line, and 1.0.1 to 1.0.25 revisions in the Word&Outlook line. You can check all changes in the release notes:

ViEmu/VS 2.2 —
ViEmu/SQL 2.2 —
ViEmu/W&O 1.5 —

In the past few months, I have set up two new blogs, one ViEmu-specific and the other one Codekana-specific, where I post about every little improvement and minor revision. If you are a regular ViEmu and/or Codekana user, you can subscribe in order to stay informed of the latest news on each product:

This is nicer than sending out emails for every little change, and still allows me to communicate improvements efficiently to those interested.

I thought I’d also detail my plans for the near- to mid-term future, so that you know what ViEmu and Codekana are up to.

First thing, I will be concentrating in Codekana development for some time. I’d like to implement some new features, improve the website, and release a new 1.5 version of this product, which I want to turn into an
indispensable tool for serious development with Visual Studio in the mid-term. There’s a lot of work ahead, but there are many exciting features that are waiting in the roster.

After this is ready, I plan to work in ViEmu versions 2.5 for VS and SQL Server, and 2.0 for Word&Outlook. These versions will implement a new licensing system, mainly due to pirate key-generators being widely available out there, and installing them will require you to log in to a new customer area and download a new license key. I want to provide a nice line-up of features that will make the upgrade well worth the hassle of downloading the key. Codekana will also see some similar treatment.

Finally, ViEmu 3 is the next goal, for which there are many very useful and interesting features planned. The major new feature I want to provide is scriptability. Even in the vi/vim editing world, there are many small variations on how different people want their vi to behave, and often it just doesn’t make sense for me to implement every little variant. A scripting system will allow customization to your own taste, and allow everyone to improve it. I plan to offer some way for people to share scripts and that will also make it a much more valuable tool. The scripting language will be a javascript-like little language. I considered other options too: VS’s internal scripting, which I don’t want to use as it wouldn’t work in SQL Server, Word and Outlook, and other possible hosts; vim’s viml scripting language, which is very complex and I really dislike; and Python, which would be nice, but would make me use the Python interpreter — this would add complexity I don’t want to have in a tightly-controlled C++ codebase.

It’s also my plan to make ViEmu 3 the first version to carry a small upgrade fee for those who bought over a year before its release. This won’t be more than a small fraction of the full license price, and I want this version to provide plenty of value so that it will justify the extra fee. If not interested in the new features, you will of course be able to keep on using ViEmu 2 for as long as you want.

I’ve also been slowly advancing in the research of the technology that will power my yet-to-be-released, stand-alone text editor, Kodumi, and which will also see its way into Codekana and possibly ViEmu. This is a mid- to long-term effort, involving a completely new programming language and VM, but I hope the results will really pay off in the end. I’ll keep you updated when there are any news.

All in all, there are a lot of exciting improvements ahead, and I hope that you will find ViEmu and Codekana more and more useful in your day-to-day work as I can implement more and better features.

As always, I will be glad to hear any feedback, suggestions, bug-reports, or your thoughts about anything else. Feel free to drop me a line.

Thanks and best regards,

NGEDIT Software

ViEmu/VS and /SQL 2.2.6

Monday, August 4th, 2008

[This was posted in August, but it was in the wrong location. I’ve just moved it over here to the right place. Apologies if it shows up anew on your feed reader. – Jon, December 1st ’08]

Just fixed a couple minor glitches with the respective installers, and added one check to ViEmu/VS’s runtime (to avoid certain race condition that has actually never happened, but who knows, may happen some day – I discovered this in the code shared with Codekana):

They’ll automatically upgrade your current install if there is one.

New versions officially released: 2.2 for VS and SQL, 1.5 for Word & Outlook

Friday, August 1st, 2008

If you go to the front page (, you will see that ViEmu/VS and ViEmu/SQL 2.2, together with ViEmu/Word&Outlook 1.5, have become the official downloads of each product.

You can read the release notes for each here:

ViEmu/VS 2.2 release notes –

ViEmu/SQL 2.2 release notes –

ViEmu/Word&Outlook 1.5 release notes –

They have been tested for weeks, so I’m quite confident on them not causing any major problem.

I’ve also changed the way the download links work. Now they direct to an .msi file without a version number, and the server redirects it to the latest stable version (with the full file name: for example ViEmuVS-2.2.5.msi). That way you know what version you are downloading. Let me know if this causes any trouble.

In a few days, I will send out an email to all existing cutomers notifying the release.

ViEmu for Word and Outlook 1.5 Release Candidate

Thursday, July 31st, 2008

I have uploaded ViEmu/Word&Outlook 1.5.1, which is the Release Candidate for the 1.5 version:

No need to uninstall previous versions before installing this one, it will upgrade the existing version automatically.

This version has a couple of typos fixed in the documentation and uses a new, more reliable method to set up the image of the “Settings” button (nothing you will notice, except that it won’t trash your clipboard the first time it’s run).

If nothing comes up, this will become the official build on the website in a couple of days, and I will send out an email announcing it afterwards.

Let me know if anything acts up.

2.2 release candidates: ViEmu/VS and /SQL 2.2.5

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

After fixing all the outstanding issues, builds 2.2.5 of ViEmu/VS and ViEmu/SQL are available for public testing. These are the actual release candidates, and unless something critical comes up, I will be releasing them officially before the end of the week:



The issues I fixed are the following:

  • ViEmu/VS: RETURN in normal mode could insert a line break when editing C# triple-slash comments in the presence of Resharper
  • ViEmu/VS: The ‘clashing keybindings found’ dialog would pop up on start-up if ViEmu had been disabled, and that dialog would auto-reenable ViEmu
  • VS & SQL: Exiting insert mode could cause weird behavior afterwards
  • VS & SQL: Fixed a couple of typos in the documentation

I’m also planning to upload a ViEmu/Word&Outlook 1.5.1 today or tomorrow and be able to release that officially before the end of the week.

Thanks for all the feedback! All this testing for weeks really helps ViEmu have the smoothest new-release experience.

First preview release of ViEmu/Word&Outlook 1.5

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

I’ve just uploaded the new 1.5.0 build of ViEmu/Word&Outlook:

No need to uninstall anything, it will automatically upgrade any previous version.
It incorporates all the latest changes added for ViEmu/VS and /SQL 2.2: gt/gT, gp/gP, even i’/a’/i”/a” motions which here understand smart quotes, and this is was quite some work to define sensibly to work compatibly with vim when only ASCII quotes are used, and still blend nicely with Word’s directional smart quotes. ViEmu will even correctly understand nested quotes, which is impossible with just ASCII, and probably no that important in the grand scheme of things (but I’m a perfectionist, what can you do…).

Also, specifically for Outlook, and while I implement direct-email-send functionality from the ex command line, either using :send or :wq, I’ve made :wq and ZZ not do anything and warn you that you should use Ctrl-Return or Ctrl-F4. It could be somewhat confusing the way it was.

There are only a couple of outstanding issues with the latest and greatest ViEmus (2.2 for VS and SQL , and this 1.5 for Word and Outlook):
1) I have a report from a customer that ViEmu/Word works fine on his system but the settings button doesn’t bring up the dialog, which is a bit weird but hopefully reasonably easy to fix. This is the only issue that makes it a non-definitive build.

2) It seems RETURN sometimes works weirdly in normal mode in ViEmu/VS at one customer’s place. I’ve been unable to reproduce it this far, and I hope that logs from his install will help me resolve the issue.

So, as soon as I have fixed these two, and any other thing that you report, I will be ready to officially release these new versions! Hopefully this will happen next week.

So thanks if you decide to download & try the above build, and I will be really grateful for any feedback you can provide!

ViEmu/VS and /SQL 2.2.2, with better i’/a’/i”/a” motions

Wednesday, July 16th, 2008

In the search for the perfect 2.2 build before the official announcement, I’ve built version 2.2.2 of both ViEmu/VS and ViEmu/SQL:

They’ll upgrade whatever ViEmu versions you have installed. They incorporate a new implementation of the i’/a’/i”/a” vim7-style text-object string motions, closer to vim’s behavior: they only work on the current line, when used on a quote they use heuristics to determine whether this is a starting or ending quote, and they ignore quote characters in strings which are escaped with a backslash (\” or \’).

One other thing I want to address in ViEmu/VS before the official announcement is a problem with the RETURN key in certain cases (see, although it’s probably due to some other 3rd party add-in as I can’t repro it.

And I also want to address some issues with ViEmu/Word&Outlook yank and paste, which sometimes confuses character-wise and line-wise pastes, before I release an unofficial 1.5 preview including proper i’/a’/i”/a” support (harder than in ViEmu/VS and /SQL, due to smart-quotes). Hopefully, all of this can be clarified this week, and an official release will happen next week!

And as always, I’ll be grateful for any feedback about these builds!

and ViEmu/SQL 2.2 also ready!

Thursday, July 10th, 2008

Download here:

No need to uninstall your current version. Main feature is i’/a’/i”/a” motions, also gt/gT, gp/gP, and all 2.1.x improvements. Thanks for any feedback!


ViEmu: vi/vim emulation for Visual Studio, Word, Outlook and SQL Server:
See where ViEmu customers are around the world:
Map of ViEmu customers around the world
Hear what others are saying about ViEmu:
ViEmu testimonials
Learn vi/vim easily with this cheat-sheet and tutorial:
Vi/vim Cheat Sheet and Tutorial
Read why vi/vim editing is the killerest:
Why vi/vim editing?
Discover ViEmu's sister product, Codekana:
Codekana outliner and syntax highlighter