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 VA 2399: VS safe mode messed VA up
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Uniwares
Tomato Guru

Portugal
2120 Posts

Posted - Mar 24 2021 :  06:18:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
To repro some issues with VS I had to switch VS into safe mode, after I was done, I restarted VS in normal mode and there it was:



All usual editor colors totally messed up, so I headed over to the VA settings:



All good here, headed over to the "Fonts and Colors" settings of VS, no trace of any VA entries in the list at all.



After disabling VA, the colors are as expected:



A quick check in the VS 2019 16.10 Preview 1, VA is good and fine, all as expected. VS 2019 16.9.2 ... all f**ed up.

Next step, uninstalling VA from VS 2019 16.9.2, reinstalling. All back to normal.
--
I have now repeated this 3 times, with varying results. Once the VA settings remained in the VS options, another time the VA color settings where reset to the VA default setting.

In my opinion, "safe mode" should only disable all extensions but not alter any configuration settings at all, even less where extensions are involved.
I have no idea if this is now a bug in the VS system itself (possibly) or in VA, so I will just report this here without any expectations.
If I have any further findings, I will report back.

feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
17242 Posts

Posted - Mar 24 2021 :  09:17:23 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have never seen this happen here, but most of my tests with safe mode are on fairly simple configurations. I am just making sure my Uniwares system, with all of your extensions, is fully updated, then I will try several rounds here, and see what happens.

As I understand it, safemode tells the IDE to bypass loading all extensions entirely, but it should not effect the extension settings.

I have seen this problem before in earlier versions of the IDE. The normal fix was to delete a font and colour cache in the registry, but this registry key has moved for VS2019, so I will have a look and see if I can figure out where it has been moved to.

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
17242 Posts

Posted - Mar 24 2021 :  09:57:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I probably should have seen that coming, I think the cashe setting is stored inside the IDE profile, so outside of the normal windows registry.

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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Uniwares
Tomato Guru

Portugal
2120 Posts

Posted - Mar 24 2021 :  10:21:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have the feeling that there is more going on than just color/font changes. I have imported VA settings from last year into a messed up profile and it didnt change anything at all. All colors seem normal in the configuration, but on screen in the editor its all wrong.
Also, what confuses me is the missing VA entries in the VS "Fonts and Colors" settings. If VA is loaded, why are there no VA settings in the list?
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feline
Whole Tomato Software

United Kingdom
17242 Posts

Posted - Mar 24 2021 :  2:27:19 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
For the importing settings not working, do you remember if you imported just VA's settings, via its registry file, or the matching IDE settings file as well? I don't understand why importing the VA settings would not be enough, but if you were experiencing the missing VA entries in the IDE font and colour list, then this would probably explain why the settings didn't work as expected.

I have seen the missing entries in the IDE font and colours list before, it used to happen occasionally on install of VA, but I haven't seen it happen in a recent version of Visual Studio before, since I had to work out how to apply the standard "fix".

For VS2008, the confirmed fix for this problem was:

Delete this registry key:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\9.0\FontAndColors\Cachethen restart the IDE

but, since VS2017 and above use a private registry, you first need to load that. The steps I have worked out are:

To load or edit the settings, the IDE needs to be CLOSED, it won't open with the private registry file "locked" by regedit.

To edit them, first locate the profile you want to edit settings for on the hard drive. This should be under the folder:

%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\VisualStudio
for VS2017, look for the directory "15.0_xxxxx" and for VS2019, look for the directory "16.0_xxxxx" where the exact directory name ends with a hash.

You are looking for the file:

%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\VisualStudio\16.0_xxxxx\privateregistry.bin

Now load "regedit.exe" and select:

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

you DO NEED to select this specific node. Now you can use:

File menu -> Load Hive...

to load the "privateregistry.bin" file you just located. You have to give it a key name, the name doesn't matter, but it is used to open the registry as:

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\<KEY_NAME>
Here, the key to delete is:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\vs2019\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\16.0_xxxxx\FontAndColors\Cache
When you have finished editing, select the loaded root key:

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\<KEY_NAME>
and use the command:

File menu -> Unload Hive...

I have tested this here, and it was safe for me, no problems at all.

If this is the same problem as we have seen before, then it should restore the missing entries in the Font and Colour list in the IDE options dialog.

I have been in and out of safe mode several times now, using your extensions and settings, and so far no colour problems at all here.

Sadly this doesn't prove much, only that this isn't an easy problem to trigger.

In theory this shouldn't be a VA bug, since VA isn't being loaded in safe mode, but I am not certain of this, sadly.

zen is the art of being at one with the two'ness
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Uniwares
Tomato Guru

Portugal
2120 Posts

Posted - Mar 25 2021 :  05:24:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I did import only the VA registry settings. For all its worth, it seems to be a plain VS problem. Version 16.9.2 has lots of regressions and new bugs, while some annoyances from 16.9.x have been improved. Guess there is not much VA can do about it, although it falls back to it when someone needs a safe mode.
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