I’ve been searching and searching the internet for someone, somewhere who might know how to enable correct IntelliSense for cshtml (MVC 5.0) in VS2013 when developing in a ClassLibrary type project.
This is the problem I was encountering:
It’s all thanks to Mohammad Chehab, who was also stumped for a while (probably not as long as me), that I was able to find the solution. His blog post explains that one must change the output path for the class library to bin/ (instead of bin/<release>) for Intellisense to work.
So now I can show you the steps for creating a ClassLibrary with cshtml (MVC5 Style):
- Create or open an existing class library project (if you open an existing one be sure to remove the MVC5 nuget package)
- Add the MVC (5.0) nuget package (right click project in solution explorer -> Manage NuGet Packages -> search for MVC and install “Microsoft ASP.NET MVC”)
- Close any and all open .cshtml files
- Right click project -> Properties -> Build -> change Output path to “bin/”
- Add the following minimal Web.config to the root of your class library project ( the web config file is solely needed for intellisense. Configuration (via Web.config) should be done in the WebApplication hosting your ClassLibrary assembly)
- Clean and Build the solution.
- Open cshtml file
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?> <configuration> <configSections> <sectionGroup name="system.web.webPages.razor" type="System.Web.WebPages.Razor.Configuration.RazorWebSectionGroup, System.Web.WebPages.Razor, Version=220.127.116.11, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=31BF3856AD364E35"> <section name="host" type="System.Web.WebPages.Razor.Configuration.HostSection, System.Web.WebPages.Razor, Version=18.104.22.168, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=31BF3856AD364E35" requirePermission="false" /> <section name="pages" type="System.Web.WebPages.Razor.Configuration.RazorPagesSection, System.Web.WebPages.Razor, Version=22.214.171.124, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=31BF3856AD364E35" requirePermission="false" /> </sectionGroup> </configSections> <appSettings> <add key="webpages:Version" value="126.96.36.199" /> <add key="webpages:Enabled" value="false" /> </appSettings> <system.web> <compilation debug="true" targetFramework="4.5" /> </system.web> <system.web.webPages.razor> <host factoryType="System.Web.Mvc.MvcWebRazorHostFactory, System.Web.Mvc, Version=188.8.131.52, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=31BF3856AD364E35" /> <pages pageBaseType="System.Web.Mvc.WebViewPage"> <namespaces> <add namespace="System.Web.Mvc" /> <add namespace="System.Web.Mvc.Ajax" /> <add namespace="System.Web.Mvc.Html" /> <add namespace="System.Web.Optimization"/> <add namespace="System.Web.Routing" /> <!-- add other namespaces for views here --> <!-- e.g. your own project's, Lib.Views.Etc --> </namespaces> </pages> </system.web.webPages.razor> </configuration>
One would expect for intellisense for a .cshtml files to work after step 2. However the other steps need to be performed before Intellisense works for directives like @model or the base page (which contains Model, ViewBag, etc. )
The result looks like it is supposed to:
You may download an example solution here: http://goo.gl/Jx2cXg
As to the reason why this does not work correctly: I believe the intellisense provider for cshtml files compiles these in the background using the web.config s it finds in the solution and expects the resulting .dll s to be stored in the bin directory (which is the default output directory for WebApplication projects) However Class libraries have different subfolders depending on the build type (bin/Debug, bin/Release, bin/<buildtype> ) and thus the IntellisenseProvider cannot find these files. I think the Intellisense/MVC/Razor/ASP.NET developement team could fix this easily, however it is a rare bug because putting Views into separate assemblies is currently an edge case for MVC. (hopefully not in the future)