Here are our essential .NET Development tools that we use at home and at work to make us more productive. There are a lot of great tools that exist out there, but I’ve narrowed down the list to the ones that we use daily or every other day.


Visual Studio: It's hard to be a .NET Developer and NOT use Visual Studio. From WinForms to Windows Universal apps, this is where it is created.

Sublime Text
: A smart text editor with support for a variety of languages, Sublime Text comes complete with a package controller and rich ecosystem of packages and extensions. 

SourceTree or Github for Windows: If you’re working with Git on Windows, then this is a must-have. It makes the transition from other source control systems a breeze.

JustCode: A developer productivity add-in for Visual Studio that includes all of the features you wish Visual Studio shipped with, such as code generation, debug decompiled code, simple refactoring and much more.

Newtonsoft.JSON: This is THE standard for serializing and deserializing JSON files in .NET. It works with pretty much any platform in the .NET Universe.


Google Chrome: This is my main browser, primarily because of the powerful developer tools that enable me to figure out what is wrong with my website in a flash.

FiddlerThis web debugging proxy tool works everywhere. From everything to performance and security testing to HTTP/HTTPS Traffic recording, this tool has it all.

Browser Stack: Create virtual machines (VMs) in the cloud, test on any browser on any OS and use for cross-browser apps.

Kendo UI Dojo:  This is an interactive environment designed to help you get up and running quickly with Telerik Kendo UI toolsuite.

Web Essentials: Web Essentials provides a link between the browser and Visual Studio to see immediate changes to your HTML/CSS files. It also has better Intellisense for HTML/CSS/JavaScript and much more.

Essential Tools

Productivity Power Tools: An extension to Visual Studio, this set of tools contains features such as reopens a closed document with CTRL+Shift+Z, copy HTML markup that puts the raw HTML for the selection into the clipboard in plain text format, and much more.

Paint.NET: This is the paint tool that Windows forgot to make. It's a free image and photo editing software written entirely in .NET.

OneDrive: This tool allows you to easily store, share and collaborate images, documents and more. It syncs files across desktop/mobile platforms.

Markdown Pad 2: If you use markdown and Windows, this is the editor to use. It includes a preview window as you are typing, and you can insert images and hyperlinks with help from the editor.

LINQPad: This is the easiest way to write and test LINQ queries without spinning up a new project in Visual Studio.

Notepad++: This  lightweight text editor is leaps and bounds above Notepad and ships with Windows. It supports plugins, syntax highlighting and much more.


Meme Generator Windows Store App: This app incorporates fun through pre-built or custom memes.

OneNote Windows App: This app integrates seamless, rich note-taking and works across desktop/mobile. It is also compatible with any OS.

TweetDeck Desktop app: This Twitter app for power users allows complete customizability of views.


I hope you enjoyed taking a look at the tools we use in our daily workflow. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out. Also, please download and explore our ASP.NETWPF and Windows Universal apps UI suites, and take a look at the overall collection. Don't forget to download our latest ebook covering .NET in 2015.

-Michael & Sam

About the Author

Michael Crump

is a Microsoft MVP, Pluralsight and MSDN author as well as an international speaker. He works at Telerik with a focus on everything mobile.  You can follow him on Twitter at @mbcrump or keep up with his various blogs by visiting his Telerik Blog or his Personal Blog.

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