6. Register Plugin
In order to test your plugin with EZ-Builder, you need to register it with the ez-robot website. This is a free and easy process to obtain a unique application key.
1) Visit the plugin Section of the ez-robot website by clicking here.
2) Login to the website if you are currently not logged in - or create an account.
3) Press the Create plugin button as highlighted in the screenshot below.
4) A blank plugin will be auto-generated for you to complete. Because we are in the testing phase and not publishing this plugin to the world, you only need to enter the title of the plugin. We will leave the other fields blank for now.
5) Save the plugin and return to your list of plugins by pressing your username from the breadcrumb shortcut at the top of the screen. This will send you to a list of your plugins. The most recent plugin definition that we had just created will be listed. plugins that have a
strike through are unpublished, which only you can see.
6) Your plugin will require a plugin.XML file, which contains necessary information for EZ-Builder to understand what to do with it. The plugin.XML file is auto-generated by the website. Right Click on the XML link and select to save the file to your hard drive.
7) Locate the saved plugin.xml file and COPY and PASTE it into your Visual Studio Project in the Solution Explorer.
8) Now we will configure the plugin.XML file to be automatically copied to your Output folder when the plugin is compiled. Select the plugin.XML file in the Solution Explorer and change the value of Copy To Output Directory to Copy Always. This will tell the visual studio compiler to copy the plugin.xml file to your output folder when compiling/building the plugin project.
9) Double click on the plugin.XML file in the Solution Explorer to edit it. The contents of the file will be displayed in the Visual Studio Editing window. Review the configuration values of the plugin.XML file. You will notice there is a Category field, which must match one of the EZ-Builder Add Control categories. For now, we will leave it configured as Beta. You will also notice the plugin GUID, that is the unique identifier for your plugin. The unique identifier cannot be edited or changed, as it links to the ez-robot website plugin definition.
10) We now need to tell the plugin.XML file what the filename of your plugin DLL is. The DLL file is generated when you build the project. Because we have successfully built the project in the previous step, it will be in the build folder. Remember, CTRL-SHIFT-B will build the project and generate the DLL.
To locate the compiled filename of your DLL, navigate to the BIN\DEBUG folder where you have created the project. Copy the filename to your clipboard to be pasted in the plugin.XML file in Visual Studio.
11) Paste the filename into the plugin.XML file and ensure it is a valid XML field. Reference the screenshot below if you are not familiar with XML.
12) Save the plugin.XML file now that it has the DLL Filename entered.
Now that the plugin.XML has been created for your plugin, it can be tested in EZ-Builder. The next step will demonstrate how the plugin can be tested in EZ-Builder on your local computer.