Back when Lutz Roeder
sold .NET Reflector to Red Gate, a lot of people was worried that the product would no longer be free. In his blog post on the subject
Lutz mentioned that Red Gate would continue to provide a free version, and so far they have kept their promise.
Now Red Gate has just released .NET Reflector Pro
that is an add-in to Visual Studio. Its not free, but its only $199.
As a SharePoint developer i can only recommend people to try this tool: it disassembles third party assemblies and in doing so creates a symbols file (PDB) that enables you as a developer to set break points in third party assemblies! That's right, step-through debugging of SharePoint assemblies (not the obfuscated code mind you).
As my friend @einaros put it on Twitter:
@AndersRask The ability to JIT debug code without the source available, is brilliant. Sure-buy from my neck of the woods.
Einar is a highly skilled developer from Norway, so he knows what he is talking about both regarding debugging and woods ;-)
When you download a copy of .NET Reflector (which is still free mind you!), it contains a free 14-days trial of .NET Reflector Pro. It isn't exactly crystal clear how to enable integration to Visual Studio, so here is how to do it:
- Open Reflector and choose the Tools menu
- Select Integration Options
- Check the version of Visual Studio you have installed (support for VS2005, VS2008 and VS2010)
- Optionally check Windows Explorer integration (will allow you to right click an assembly and select "Browse with .NET Reflector)
- Press OK
Now open Visual Studio and you have a new menu option ".NET Reflector".
To get a quick introduction to what you can do inside Visual Studio check out the walkthrough and demo video from Red Gate. I will definitely spent those $199 on this tool. It should be considered a must have for any SharePoint developer!
I will post more on this tool once i get to test it thoroughly.