The Visual Micro Explorer

The Visual Micro Explorer is a powerful browser and control center for any kind of information concerning Arduino.

 

  • To open the Micro Explorer, click on the Question Mark Icon icon on the Visual Micro toolbar or choose vMicro > Visual Micro Explorer in the menu


The Micro Explorer window opens. Click on one of the tabs 1 to show the respective pane:

Micro Explorer


If you have multiple platforms installed -e.g. multiple versions of the Arduino IDE-, then select the right platform first in the platform selection box 2.

These  are Micro Explorer's panes and their contents:

"Installed"
Shows the list of installed boards and libraries for a given platform.
"Reference"
Shows a table of contents of the language documentation available on www.arduino.cc Click on an item to jump directly to its documentation page.
"Examples"
Shows a list of example source files provided by your platform. Click on an example to load it as a project (either the original or a copy) or click on a single source file to open it in your IDE.

Micro Explorer Examples Pane

If you click on the example's name 1, then a Visual Studio/Atmel Studio project will be created for you.
If you click on the source file's name 2, then this source file will open, without creating a project.

Read more about working with examples below.
"Manage Boards"
Lets you install development platforms for additional boards. (Read more)
Warning  Only available if you have Arduino IDE 1.6.4 or newer installed.

"Manage Libraries"
Lets you install and deinstall libraries from various vendors. (Read more)

"Search www"
Provides a search field and performs a Google search for the given text either in the Arduino Reference, the Arduino tutorials, or both on www.arduino.cc and www.visualmicro.com .

Note Icon Note:

The top of the result list is occupied by Google paid ads which are not related to www.arduino.cc or www.visualmicro.com.


"What's new"
Shows a "What's new" page that gives you the newest information about Visual Micro.

"Configure", "Rescan" and links

 

3
The Configure button opens the Configuration manager, where you can configure the installed IDEs on your PC.
4
Use the Rescan button to refresh the tree display, if you have changed anything on your configuration outside of Visual Micro.
5
Provides a number of useful links that open Windows Explorer showing folders on your PC, where platforms, libraries etc. are stored.
The "Install xxx from ZIP" links allow you to install libraries or board platforms from a locally downloaded ZIP rather that by directly downloading them from a web source.
6
With this toggle switch you, can show or hide the Visual Micro documentation.

Working with examples

In the "Examples" tab above, you can easily open or copy examples to your project.

Simply click on an example...

Click on Example

and the following window appears:

Open Example Dialog

Open Copy
Creates a new project as a copy of the example in a subfolder named "MyExamples" in your Arduino sketch folder
Open Original
Opens the example as a project in its original location. With this option you can modify the example source files directly.

Warning 16 Note:

Use this option only if you intend to change the examples themselves. Opening a copy (see above) is safer if you want to leave the example files untouched.


Browse Source
Opens a subtree under the example where you can pick a single source file and open it:

Open Example Subtree

Warning 16 Note:

Visual Micro opens the original file, not a copy. Save the file immediately under a different name before modifying it, unless you intend to modify the original file.

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