Tabs Studio Blog (organizing Visual Studio document tabs)

November 11, 2021

Short tabs

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — Sergey Vlasov @ 12:26 pm

In Tabs Studio, tabs expand to fill available row space (unless it is the last row of tabs). This is how it looks in VS 2022:

I’ve added the new ShortTabs property that prevents tab expansion:

You can enable it with the following style:

<Style TargetType="TabsStudio:Tabs" BasedOn="{StaticResource DefaultTabsStyle}">

  <Setter Property="ShortTabs" Value="True"/>


Download link: Tabs Studio v5.0.2.

July 1, 2021

Tabs Studio v5.0.0 released

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 10:48 am

Tabs Studio v5.0.0 released:

  • Added support for Visual Studio 2022 Preview 1.1.
  • Moved support for Visual Studio 2015/2013/2012/2010 and SSMS 17/2016/2014/2012 to a separate installer TabsStudio2015.
  • Improved installer’s ability to handle blocking processes.
  • Added the “Rename regex” option to the ITransform add-in.
  • Extended the Disambiguator add-in to compare full document paths when one level of disambiguation is not enough.
  • Fixed unpredictable ordering in the OrderEx add-in when there is more than 2 extensions in a group.
  • Fixed a rare TabsStudio.Tabs should not return PositiveInfinity exception.
  • Fixed a rare ArgumentException in WindowBase.get_Caption.
Tabs Studio in Visual Studio 2022

Tabs Studio in Visual Studio 2022

Download link: Tabs Studio v5.0.0.

May 24, 2020

Full path disambiguation

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 11:36 am

The Disambiguator add-in detects when two or more tabs have the same title and adds Visual Studio folder or project to titles for these tabs:

Notice how for WindowsProject1.h and WindowsProject1.cpp tabs it added corresponding VS folder names Header Files and Source Files and for Resource.h tabs it added corresponding project names WindowsProject2 and WindowsProject1.

Disambiguator v1.0.6 shipped with Tabs Studio v4.8.0 also had some limitations. For MainWindow.xaml.cs and MainWindow.xaml tabs that are in the same directory, folder and project it still unnecessarily adds the project name WpfApp1, and for Class1.cs tabs that are in the NewFolder1/111/Class1.cs and NewFolder2/111/Class1.cs folders it adds only the closest folder name 111.

I’ve extended Disambiguator to compare full document paths when previously demonstrated disambiguation doesn’t provide enough info:

Notice that now the project name is not added to MainWindow.xaml.cs and MainWindow.xaml tabs as they can’t be disambiguated anyway, and two levels of directory names NewFolder1/111 and NewFolder2/111 are added to Class1.cs tabs to make them unique.

Download link: Disambiguator v1.1.0.

October 25, 2019

Integrated vertical tabs

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 2:57 pm

Visual Studio 2019 16.4 Preview 2 adds the vertical tabs layout option to the core product:

Tabs Studio continues to work as usual if you keep the tab layout option set to the default Top value, but I’d like to use this opportunity to improve vertical tabs usage experience. More specifically, when vertical tabs are activated in VS 2019, Tabs Studio reuses this area to show tabs, instead of showing them in a separate tool window:

If you want to try it yourself, install Visual Studio Preview.

Enable vertical tabs in Visual Studio options:

And install Tabs Studio v4.6.2.

May 10, 2019

Controlled opening of corresponding files

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 5:09 pm

You can quickly open a corresponding file from the tab context menu:

But some system and autogenerated files don’t need to be open manually:

You can remove them from the context menu adding the defining pattern without a capturing group to the Title grouping regex option:

In some configurations there are could be just too many corresponding files, making the context menu hard to use:

For this scenario I’ve created the NoMoreOpen add-in that removes corresponding file items from the context menu if there are more than 5 of them:

April 18, 2019

Customizing TrackEd colors

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 9:56 am

TrackEd add-in shows a yellow or green bar in the tab title for modified and saved documents:

You can customize these colors first by applying the following Tabs style (copied from TrackEd source):

<Style TargetType="TabsStudio:TabNameModificationMarker" BasedOn="{StaticResource DefaultTabNameModificationMarkerStyle}">
<Setter Property="Template">
    <ControlTemplate TargetType="{x:Type TabsStudio:TabNameModificationMarker}">
      <TextBlock Name="TabNameModificationMarkerTextBlock" Padding="0" Margin="3,2,0,2"  Text=" "/>
        <DataTrigger Binding="{Binding Path=(TabsStudioTrackEd:Properties.DocStatus),
                 RelativeSource={RelativeSource AncestorType=TabsStudio:TabNameGroup}}" Value="Dirty">
          <Setter TargetName="TabNameModificationMarkerTextBlock" Property="TextBlock.Background" Value="#E5AC00"/>
          <Setter Property="Visibility" Value="Visible"/>
        <DataTrigger Binding="{Binding Path=(TabsStudioTrackEd:Properties.DocStatus),
                 RelativeSource={RelativeSource AncestorType=TabsStudio:TabNameGroup}}" Value="Saved">
          <Setter TargetName="TabNameModificationMarkerTextBlock" Property="TextBlock.Background" Value="#009900"/>
          <Setter Property="Visibility" Value="Visible"/>

<Style TargetType="TabsStudio:TabExtensionModificationMarker" BasedOn="{StaticResource DefaultTabExtensionModificationMarkerStyle}">
<Setter Property="Template">
    <ControlTemplate TargetType="{x:Type TabsStudio:TabExtensionModificationMarker}">
      <TextBlock Name="TabExtensionModificationMarkerTextBlock" Padding="0" Margin="0,2,0,2"  Text=" "/>
        <DataTrigger Binding="{Binding Path=(TabsStudioTrackEd:Properties.DocStatus),
                 RelativeSource={RelativeSource AncestorType=TabsStudio:TabExtensionGroup}}" Value="Dirty">
          <Setter TargetName="TabExtensionModificationMarkerTextBlock" Property="TextBlock.Background" Value="#E5AC00"/>
          <Setter Property="Visibility" Value="Visible"/>
        <DataTrigger Binding="{Binding Path=(TabsStudioTrackEd:Properties.DocStatus),
                 RelativeSource={RelativeSource AncestorType=TabsStudio:TabExtensionGroup}}" Value="Saved">
          <Setter TargetName="TabExtensionModificationMarkerTextBlock" Property="TextBlock.Background" Value="#009900"/>
          <Setter Property="Visibility" Value="Visible"/>

And then change colors for the name and extension to your values. For example, after changing default #E5AC00 Dirty color to #D90000 it looks like this:

April 10, 2019

Tab coloring rules generator

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 10:07 am

The Tab coloring rule dialog lets you conveniently define background and foreground colors for a tab matching specific criteria:

The same rule can be also defined as an XAML Tabs style:

<Style TargetType="TabsStudio:Tab" BasedOn="{StaticResource DefaultTabStyle}">
                <Condition Binding="{Binding Path=Paths, RelativeSource={RelativeSource Self}, 
                		Converter={StaticResource RegexMatch},ConverterParameter='WpfApp1'}" Value="True"/>
                <Condition Binding="{Binding Path=IsTabSelected, RelativeSource={RelativeSource Self}}" Value="True"/>
            <Setter Property="Background">
                     <LinearGradientBrush StartPoint="0,0" EndPoint="0,1"> <GradientStop Color="#e87400" Offset="0"/> <GradientStop Color="#0089E1" Offset="1"/> </LinearGradientBrush>
            <Setter Property="Foreground">
                     <SolidColorBrush Color="White"/>

If you have many similar tab coloring rules, instead of using the Tab coloring rule dialog you may consider generating an XAML style programmatically and then copy it to Tabs Studio. is a sample project for Visual Studio 2019 using a T4 Text Template that generates 3 styles for a project tab, selected project tab and previously selected project tab given a project path and a base background color. If you want to define these styles for multiple projects, in the file just add a path-color pair to the dictionary, save the file and copy generated tab.txt file contents as Tabs style:

<# var rules = new Dictionary<string, string> { {"WebApplication1", "#800000"}, {"WpfApp1", "#e87400"} }; #>

February 6, 2019

Visual Studio 2019 inactive tab text

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — Sergey Vlasov @ 11:29 pm

Visual Studio 2019 Preview 2.2 includes an updated blue theme that makes inactive tab text in Tabs Studio invisible:

One workaround to fix it is applying the following Tabs style:

<Style TargetType="TabsStudio:Tab" BasedOn="{StaticResource DefaultTabStyle}">
        <Condition Property="IsGroupFocused" Value="False"/>
        <Condition Property="IsTabSelected"  Value="True"/>
      <Setter Property="Foreground" Value="{DynamicResource {x:Static vs_shell:EnvironmentColors.FileTabInactiveTextBrushKey}}"/>

The fix will be included in the next Tabs Studio release.

January 18, 2019

Showing tab numbers

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Sergey Vlasov @ 12:55 pm

If you are using NavigateToTabXX commands to quickly switch tabs in Tabs Studio using keyboard, you may find the new Show tab numbers option very useful:

Download link: Navigator v1.1.8.

September 26, 2018

Keeping tabs order better

Filed under: Uncategorized — Sergey Vlasov @ 9:41 am

I’ve created a new add-in OrderKeeper that remembers a tab position when it is closed and restores the position when the tab is reopened. It should address the problem with tabs reordering when a project is externally modified by updating from source control or switching branches. You may also find stable tab position useful when you manually close and reopen a tab.

Download link: OrderKeeper v1.0.0.

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