Visual Studio Code has emerged as the go-to remote development tool in many areas far outside the Microsoft-centric developer ecosystem.
The lightweight open source-based, cross-platform code editor — a distant cousin to the full-fledged Visual Studio IDE — has long enjoyed enormous popularity due to all the functionality available in a huge mrketplace of extensions that can make it feel and act like an IDE.
Microsoft’s VS Code Remote Development guidance explains how developers can use a container, remote machine or the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) as a full-featured development environment, enabling them to:
Remote development functionality, of course, is provided via an extension, this one being installed more than 2.8 million times, though it’s still in preview. The Remote Development FAQ says: “The Visual Studio Code Remote Development extension pack allows you to open any folder in a container, on a remote machine (via SSH), or in the Windows Subsystem for Linux and take advantage of VS Code’s full feature set. This means that VS Code can provide a local-quality development experience — including full IntelliSense (completions), debugging, and more — regardless of where your code is located or hosted.”
Relatively recently, Microsoft and Microsoft-owned GitHub have made many moves to position it further for remote development, especially apropos in these times of pandemic-driven home-based enterprise development amid a more general move to more distributed, collaborative development approaches. Those efforts build on the SSH/containers/WSL approach and include various browser-based VS Code implementations.
So Microsoft remote development guidance now focuses on some of those newer efforts, like GitHub Codespaces.
Visual Studio Code Remote Development allows you to transparently interact with source code and runtime environments sitting on other machines (whether virtual or physical). GitHub Codespaces is a service that expands these capabilities with managed cloud-hosted environments that are accessible from both VS Code and a browser-based editor.”
All those efforts have paid off, as VS Code remote development is front-and-center in a multitude of varied applications. Here’s just a small sample:
Then, you can execute your code on the server the same way you would locally.”
Visual Studio Code Remote Development allows you to use a container, remote machine, or the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) as a full-featured development environment. So the idea is that you want to remotely create and manage code on Mistral using VS Code.”
We could go on and on, but considering all of the above, it’s not surprising that when a Hacker News user earlier this year asked about Best practices for editing remote code locally? the tops answer was:
About the Author
David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.

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