Using the Toolbox

The Toolbox is a sliding tree control that behaves much like Windows Explorer, but without grid or connection lines. Multiple segments of the Toolbox (called "tabs") can be expanded simultaneously, and the entire tree scrolls inside the Toolbox window. To expand any tab of the Toolbox, click the plus (+) sign next to its name. To collapse an expanded tab, click the minus (-) sign next to its name.

The Toolbox displays icons for items that you can add to projects. Each time you return to an editor or designer, the Toolbox automatically scrolls to the tab and item most recently selected. As you shift focus to a different editor or designer or to a different project, the current selection in the Toolbox shifts with you.

Note

No Toolbox items are displayed while editing Console applications, because they are typically designed without a graphical user interface.

You can customize the Toolbox by rearranging items within a tab or adding custom tabs and items. For more information, see How to: Manage the Toolbox Window and How to: Manipulate Toolbox Tabs. To add or remove Toolbox items, use the Choose Toolbox Items Dialog Box (Visual Studio). Items that can be made available as Toolbox icons include components from the .NET Framework class library, COM components, controls for Windows Forms and Web Forms, HTML elements, and XML namespaces.

Note

The actual component files on your computer are not affected when you add or remove icons from the Toolbox.

When you choose a different settings combination, the current Toolbox state is cleared. Choosing a different settings combination can change which Toolbox tabs are now available, and what items are displayed on a tab. For more information, see Visual Studio Settings.

In This Section

How to: Manage the Toolbox Window

How to: Manipulate Toolbox Tabs

How to: Add Items to the Toolbox

How to: Package and Install Custom Controls for the Toolbox

Toolbox

Editing Text, Code, and Markup

Editing Resources

Customizing the Editor

Navigating Through Code

Viewing Classes, Members, and Symbols

Designing and Viewing Classes and Types

Coding Aids