Catel Templates updated after 2 years

The project and item templates for Catel in the Visual Studio marketplace were long overdue. We had a few users asking whether they could be updated (for example, to support VS 2019).

Updating the templates

This was the perfect opportunity to check whether the contents of the templates were still up-to-date. We also figured out that there were a few issues with the templates if we wanted to update them:

  • Updating the template code is manual work
  • Submitting updates is manual work (building / packaging / uploading)

We could either just remove the templates and no longer support them, or move them to a separate repository and try to automate all the steps required to build and publish the templates, resulting in all extensions being updated in the VS Marketplace:

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Important note: unfortunately we were not able to re-use / update the old templates so had to unlist them and recreate them with new, unique, identifiers. You will need to redownload the templates from the extensions gallery.

Improving steps to make contributions easier

During the process of automating the builds, we also made it much easier to make contributions via pull requests:

  • Scripts to copy the templates to your local VS 2019 installation so they can be modified / tested
  • Scripts to copy the templates back to the source code (once modified)
  • Scripts to zip and put the templates into the right project directories

This means that users no longer have to work with the VSIX projects anymore, just the template files.

Ways to contribute

There are several ways to contribute to Catel:

  • Please consider supporting Catel on Open Collective
  • Help updating the templates / adding new templates (if you are unsure about this, just contact the team via Gitter and we are happy to get you started)