Tools in 2005 saw several new developments. Innovative refactoring software came to market. Class browsers gained attention. UI development tools began to support new front-end frameworks. Virtual machines became more common on the developer's workbench. These and other product categories will have a new opportunity to flourish in the wake of the year's big blockbuster release -- that is, Microsoft's Visual Studio 2005.
Commercial and shareware tools automate laborious and complex tasks, and -- just like code -- they are constantly in flux. While many developers champion "build your own" and open software, these developers and others go ahead and purchase software from new and established vendors.
In this feature, SearchVB.com highlights some of the year's top product releases. There is certainly a lot out there, but these products stood out for their functionality, their simplicity and their usefulness to the .NET developer.