Customize Visual Studio Code

You can customize VS Code to work the way you like to work. Here is a quick primer on some of the most common ways to configure VS Code. Navigate to the relevant sections to learn more.

Tip: Several categories of customizations (Themes, Snippets, Language Support) can be shared in the VS Code Extension Marketplace. It's always a good idea to look there first.

Customization Topics

Category Scenario Marketplace
User and Workspace settings Configure settings for an individual workspace or all workspaces. Word-wrapping, linting options and much more. No
Key Bindings Review all key bindings and change them to suit your needs. Yes
Tasks Tasks are a great way to connect VS Code with your broader development workflow. No
Themes Add additional color themes to VS Code. Yes
Basic Language Support Add additional basic language support (colorization and bracket matching) to VS Code via a TextMate bundle. You can also associate more file extensions with an existing language. Yes
Snippets Add additional snippets to your favorite language Yes
Language Configure the display language No

Next Steps

Here are a few pointers to help you on your way...

  • Extension Marketplace - Browse the extensions others have shared.
  • Yo Code - Generate a customization, then install it locally.
  • Publishing Tool - Use the vsce publishing tool to share your customization with others.

Common Questions

Q: How can I make my customization get loaded into VS Code on start-up?

A: If you move a copy of your customization into your .vscode/extensions folder it will be loaded up as VS Code is started.

Q: What are the valid fields in the package.json (extension Manifest) file?

A: We have extended the package.json to include the required fields for customization and extension loading/distribution. We have an overview of the optional and mandatory sections of the extension manifest available.

Q: Can a package.json contribute more than one customization?

A: Yes, the contributes attribute can take a comma delimited list of contribution types and, as you'll notice from the json above, each contribution type takes an array (e.g. "themes": [ ]).

Q: I created a new customization but I don't see it displayed in VS Code?

A: Make sure you have copied all of the generator's output files to a new folder under your .vscode/extensions folder (e.g. ".vscode/extensions/cooltheme") and that you have restarted VS Code after installing the customization.

On startup, if VS Code detects an issue with a customization, you will see an error message which can aid in debugging your customization.

customization error