Mole 2010 at the Portland Area .NET User Group

March 28, 2011

On Tuesday April 5th 2011, I will be giving a presentation at PADNUG, the Portland Area .NET User Group. The topic of the evening is Mole 2010, the new debugging tool that I helped create for Visual Studio 2010 users. We will be taking a guided tour of Mole 2010, checking out all the cool features. Also, we will discuss the problems that were faced while developing the tool, and how those problems were solved. It should be a lot of fun. See you there!


Use Mole 2010 to explore data from the F# Interactive console

March 15, 2011

I got an interesting e-mail today from someone interested in Mole 2010. He wanted to know how to open Mole 2010 to visualize the data in his F# Interactive console. I didn’t really understand what he meant at first, but this evening I researched it and found a solution for him. According to the fellow who sent me the e-mail, the F# community has been itching for a tool that they can use to visualize their data while working on the F# command line, so hopefully this will satisfy their needs.

I wrote up a short walkthrough document on how to use Mole 2010 in the F# Interactive console. If you are interested, please download it here: Mole 2010 in F# Interactive

I’m not an F# developer by any means, so please pardon any glaring stupidities in my F# code snippets. If you know a better way to write that code, I’m open for suggestions. 🙂

Note: This usage scenario is definitely not supported by Molosoft at this time. Mole 2010 and Visual Studio’s debugger visualizer infrastructure were not designed to work in the F# Interactive console. Please see this as an “experimental” solution to the problem. I’ve listed some  known issues in the walkthrough document.

Happy Moling!

Sacha Barber reviews Mole 2010

March 11, 2011

The Microsoft MVP and legendary author on CodeProject, Sacha Barber, posted a review of Mole 2010 on his blog here. His review of the tool is from the point of view of a veteran WPF developer. Enjoy!

CodeProject article about Mole 2010

March 9, 2011

If you are interested in reading about the great features in the Mole 2010 debugging tool, you’re in luck. We have published a sponsored article on CodeProject that shows what Mole 2010 can do. Check out Debugging Made Easier with Mole 2010 to see what Mole 2010 has to offer.

Free trial of Mole 2010

March 6, 2011

Due to popular demand, we have published a free trial of Mole 2010. You can learn more about it and get the bits here:

Happy debugging!

Using Mole 2010 to compare objects

March 6, 2011

One of the most interesting features in Mole 2010 is the ability to compare objects. The tool enables you to effectively “diff” the property and field values of two different objects or of the same object at various points in time. If you are comparing two different objects they do not even need to be of the same type.

This feature makes it easy to track changes to an object while your application is running. It also makes it easy to detect differences (or lack of differences) between any two objects in your application. To my knowledge, Visual Studio 2010 does not natively support this type of debugging capability.

Here’s a quick walkthrough, showing how to leverage this feature in Mole 2010.

Suppose we have an application that shows information about people, and lets the user edit that information using a data entry screen. One day while debugging a problem with that data entry screen we open up Mole 2010 and navigate to a Person object that will be edited. 

Since we are about to test the data entry screen, we capture the state of the Person object and save it to disk. 

Next we close Mole 2010, continue executing the application, edit some values on the Person object, click a Save button, hit a breakpoint and fire up Mole 2010 again. After navigating back to the Person object we just finished editing, the MoloScope contains the object’s updated values. 

At this point, it is easy to verify whether the changes we made were applied to the Person object or not. Simply load up the file we saved moments ago and compare the property and field values in it against the values in the MoloScope. 

After loading up the comparison file, we can visually diff the two objects to see what changed and what didn’t change. The properties/fields whose value changed are bold and red, with a tooltip that displays the value loaded from the file. 

In case you want to see all of the changed properties at a glance, sort on the Value column by clicking the column header. When objects are being compared in the MoloScope, sorting the Value column will bring all of the changed items to the top of the list. 

As I mentioned earlier, this feature can be used to compare any two objects, regardless of their data types. The properties and fields are compared by name. Whatever properties/fields that exist in the MoloScope will be compared against whatever values are in the data file. 

You can learn more about the MoloScope here:

You can buy a copy of Mole 2010 here:

Using Mole 2010 to analyze collections

March 3, 2011

When debugging an application it is often necessary to review and analyze the data stored by .NET objects in a collection. Using the standard debugging tools in Visual Studio 2010 to inspect large amounts of in-memory data can be a time consuming task, especially if you need to look at values stored by multiple objects in a collection.

For example, if you wanted to look at each Person object in a collection, you might use Visual Studio’s Watch window to inspect each Person object one at a time. You would have to expand each collection item in order to view its properties, and there is no easy way to work with that data outside of Visual Studio.

Wouldn’t it be better if you could see the properties of all objects in a collection at a glance?

Or better yet, what if you could export the collection to Excel and analyze it there instead?

Mole 2010 makes it much easier to review and analyze your application’s data. It allows you to view all objects in a collection of data at one time. It also enables you to export that data to a file on disk. When you export a collection of objects to disk, it is saved as a Comma Separated Value (CSV) file that can be opened in Excel.

Learn more about viewing and exporting collections with Mole 2010 here:

You can buy a copy of Mole 2010 here: