F# Language Bindings for Open Editors (Emacs, MonoDevelop)
F# Emacs Lisp C# Shell
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F# Language Support for Open Editors

This project contains advanced editing support for F# for a number of open editors

For more information about F# see The F# Software Foundation. Join The F# Open Source Group. We use github for tracking work items and suggestions.

Basic Components

The core component is the FSharp.CompilerBinding.dll. This is used by both fsautocomplete.exe, a command-line utility to sit behind Emacs, Vim and other editing environments, an the MonoDevelop components.

Basic Components - Building


This produces bin/FSharp.CompilerBinding.dll and bin/fsautocomplete.exe. To understand how to use these components, see the other projects.

MonoDevelop support

Adds open source F# support to the open source editor MonoDevelop. Features:

  • Code completion
  • Syntax highlighting
  • Tooltips
  • Debugging
  • Target .NET 3.5, 4.0, 4.5
  • F# Interactive scripting (Alt-Enter execution)
  • Templates (Console Application, Library, Tutorial Project, Gtk Project, Web Programming)
  • Makefile support
  • Supports F# 3.0 type providers (requires F# 3.0)
  • xbuild support for Visual Studio .fsproj and .sln files without change (requires Mono 3.0 and F# 3.0)
  • MonoDevelop also includes C# 5.0 and other features

Requires MonoDevelop 3.0 and later versions


Install F#. Then install the F# Language Binding via the MonoDeveop Add-in manager.

MonoDevelop --> Add-in manager --> Gallery --> Language Bindings --> F# Language Binding

Using the ASP.NET MVC 4 Template

On Windows, you need to install ASP.NET MVC 4 from here. You can then create a project from the template, build it, and run.

On Mac and Linux the template includes a copy of the basic ASP.NET MVC 4 core DLLs.

Building and installing from scratch

Normally you should get the binding from the repository. If you want to build and install it yourself and develop it, try this:

cd monodevelop
make install

Can't get it to work?

Don't give up! Add an issue to the issue tracker. You issue will be seen by the developers.

Notes for Developers

To check things are working try a few different things somewhat at random:

  • Check the F# templates are appearing
  • Create a console project (NOTE: retarget it to .NET 4.0 using right-click->options->General)
  • Check there are completion lists in the console project e.g. for 'System.' and 'System.Console.WriteLine(' and 'List.'
  • Check you can build the console project
  • Check you can run the console project
  • Check you can "debug-step-into" the console project
  • Check you can set a break point in the console project
  • Check there are type tips showing when you move the mouse over code identifiers
  • Load an existing .fsproj (e.g. see MonoDevelop.FSharpBinding/tests/projects/...) and check if completion works etc.
  • Run xbuild on a few .fsproj (this is nothing to do with the binding, it is just fsharp/fsharp)

There are a couple of known issues, see https://github.com/fsharp/fsharpbinding/issues.

On windows, use the file MonoDevelop.FSharpBinding\MonoDevelop.FSharp.windows.fsproj. Be aware that this is not the original file, which is MonoDevelop.FSharp.orig. The windows file is created automatically now and then to help development on Windows.

On Mac/Linux, please develop using the 'Makefile' with Mono 3.0 and FSharp 3.0. There is an old Makefile for the days before xbuild works, but this is not used to prepare distributions.

On Mac/Linux, if you make changes to the binding, then loss of completion lists etc. can be disturbing and hard to debug. There are some debugging techniques. To launch MD you can use

/Applications/MonoDevelop.app/Contents/MacOS/MonoDevelop --new-window --no-redirect

to enable some logging you can use


On Windows you can generally use Visual Studio to help develop the binding. You can start Xamarin Studio or MonoDevelop under the debugger using the normal technique:

devenv /debugexe "c:\Program Files (x86)\Xamarin Studio\bin\XamarinStudio.exe"

Notes for People Preparing Releases

The addin gets released to http://addins.monodevelop.com under project 'FSharp' (project index 48). Contact @sega, @tpetricek or @funnelweb to make an update.

To build the .mpack files to upload to this site, use:

cd monodevelop
make packs

The files go under pack/...

The build process builds several versions of the addin for specific different versions of MonoDevelop. MonoDevelop APIs can change a bit and are not binary compatible. We try to keep up with (a) the latest version available as an Ubuntu package (b) the latest version available in the 'Stable' channel on Windows and Mac (c) the latest version available in the 'Beta' channel on Windows and Mac

When developing generally use (c)

The build is performed against the MonoDevelop binaries we depend on in dependencies/..., which have been snarfed from MonoDevelop installs.