With the release of Visual Studio 2011, I had a chance to download the Ultimate (beta) version and install it on my computer to see what this new Visual Studio version has to offer. The download and install process took about 2 hours to finish (9GB download from Microsoft site). It comes bundled with .NET framework 4.5 which also includes some improvements and new features.
As soon as Visual Studio runs on your computer you will notice the new look of its interface. Microsoft revamped the older Visual Studio look and gave it new icons and colored theme. In fact, you can choose between light and dark theme from option menu according to your taste.
Visual Studio 2011 also supports HTML5 validation and CSS3 natively; no need to install an additional update package like you had to with Visual Studio 2010. There are also some new option menus selectable from top menu bar (XMl, SQL, Menu test) and a new “quick launch” feature accessible from top right of the interface which could be used as a shortcut for commands like open, new, add, etc. You can also choose which local browser is launched when “View in browser” is selected from the menu shortcut, which is very convenient.
Other new features in Visual Studio 2011 include a Graphic tool for basic 3D model editing and an enhanced Team Explorer function; you can now request code reviews at any point in the project lifecycle.