How To Use Visual Studio Code For Beginners

March 23, 2024 in coding, VS Code by Etugbo Judith Ogheneujiro5 minutes

Photo Credit: Neowin

Are you enthusiastic about exploring the Visual Studio code editor as a noob?. If yes, this article is for you.

Visual Studio(VS) code is a lightweight code editor developed by Microsoft. It supports Windows, Linux, and MacOS operating systems.

Visual Studio code can also be used as a text editor. It is written in typescript and Javascript.

This Integrated Development Environment (IDE) is developer-friendly and easy to use. This documentation will guide you through the:

  • The system requirement for installing VS code
  • The installation process
  • Features of Visual Studio Code
  • Navigating through Visual Studio code

System Requirement

To install the VS code editor you must have the following system requirement

  1. 1.6 GHz or a faster processor.
  2. Above 1GB RAM space.
  3. Windows, Linux, or MacOS operating system.
  4. Stable internet connection for the installation process.

Getting Started

Follow these steps for easy installation of the VS code IDE

Step 1: Go to the Visual Studio code website

Step 2: Click on your preferred operating system(OS) and download. In this guide, I will be using Windows OS.

Step 3: Locate the downloaded file in your folder

Step 4: Click on open

Step 5: Select the I accept the agreement and click on Next

Step 6: Select the Create Desktop Icon and click on Next

Step 7: Click on Install

Step 8: Allow to install

Step 8: Click on Finish

Step 9: Visual Studio code will open with this interface

Features of Visual Studio Code

VS code IDE has a lot of beautiful features that enhance developers in its coding environment. Some of the features are listed:

1. Debugging: This feature allows you to debug your code using a breakpoint.

2. Syntax highlighting: VS code highlights your code when there is a syntax error.

3. Code refactoring: This feature allows you to restructure your code without altering the behavior or performance.

4. Embedded Git: VS code comes with an embedded Git feature that enables you to store your projects remotely.

5. Code Completion: This feature enhances the developer’s speed and eases the stress of fully typing cnertain keywords or code. It auto-completes and also suggests code for you.


If you want to type a keyword in a particular programming language, VS code automatically displays various keywords related to what you want to type for you to select.

6. Custom theme: This feature allows you to customize the user interface of your VS code.

7. Keyboard shortcuts: VS code provides you with numerous keyboard shortcuts for navigating within the editor.

8. Extensions and support for other programming languages: VS code allows you to download and install various extensions into the IDE. It also supports various programming languages such as Java, Python, C++, Kotlin, etc.

Navigating through VS code doesn’t require much experience as a beginner. This IDE is simple and easy to navigate. Upon launching your VS code a beautiful interface will be displayed on your screen.

I will explain each section of the User Interface (UI) using the label in the images below.

Activity Bar

1. Explorer: This allows you to navigate between the files inside your folder.

2. Search: To search for files in the directory that open in VScode.

3. Source Control: Label three represents where you make your commits, push, pull, and other GitHub activities to and from your remote repository.

4. Run and debug: Label four allows you to run your code and debug.

5. Extension: Label five allows you to search for different extensions you want to download in the marketplace.

6. Account: Label six indicates your account on VS code.

7. Settings: Label seven comes with different features that allow you to customize your VS code theme, check for updates, keyboard shortcuts, etc.


1. New file: Create a new file

2. Open file: Open previous files

3. Open folder: Open a folder from a different location on your PC.

4. Clone git repository: Allows you to clone a git repository

5. Connect to: Allows you to connect to a remote development workspace.

1. File: Create, save, open, files e.t.c

2. Edit: Edit the document or files you are working on.

3. Selection: This tab consists of keyboard options that allow you to make selections while working on your file.

4. View: Shows and allows you to switch between different views within VS code.

5. Go: Allows you to switch between editors.

6. Run: Allows you to run and debug your code.

7. Terminal: Allows you to run different git commands while working on your project.

8. Help: Provides different options on how to navigate through VS code. It also contains documentation, a playground, video tutorials, etc.

9. Search Bar: Search for files in the directory that is open in VS code

10. Toggle Primary Sidebar: Splits your screen into two parts in the left direction.

11. Toggle Panel: Opens the terminal where you can debug, run git commands, check for errors e.t.c

12. Toggle Secondary sidebar: Splits your screen into two parts in the right direction.

13. Customize layout: This allows you to customize your layout by setting the visibility. It also has some other cool features full screen mode, zen mode e.t.c

Wrap Up

VS code is a code editor whose IDE is easy for beginners to adapt. In this guide, we discussed

  • Getting started with VS code.
  • Some basic features of VS code.
  • How to navigate through VS code.

Hope you enjoyed my article.

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