“Find all references” in VS 8

There is a cool new feature in Visual Studio 8’s editor UI that is pretty useful if you are trying to determine the scope of a particular change or crossreference a variable or function to determine where it is used: “find all references”.

You can activate this by right clicking a symbol in the source code editor and selecting “find all references”.  A window will open near the build output that lists all source references to the symbol in the current solution (read: workspace).  This is also pretty useful in debugging, if you want to determine where a particular variable might be modified in a particular way.  For example, I used this recently to pull up a list of all locations that might set a particular class pointer to null when debugging a null pointer dereference bug.

Another good use for this is if you are working in unfamiliar code and want to get a feel for the scope of a change you make.  Of course, this utility has some limitations (it only searches within the current workspace), but it can be very handy to quickly gauge how impactful a change might be.

3 Responses to ““Find all references” in VS 8”

  1. bugcheck says:

    its cool to have this in the editor(I still refuse to us VS though), i tend to use IDA a lot for xrefing. it beats grepping src anyway…

  2. Debug_boy says:

    We can also use different visual assist in the older versions of
    One exzample is “Tomato”.Search for it in google and find it’s
    demo version fro 30 days.
    We may also try it . It can provide the same as you discussed
    in this page.

  3. Risto says:

    Any suggestion how to implement your own reference function that searches through DTE and find all the references for an object/element