JetBrains Rider 2023.3 Help

Scratch files

Sometimes you may need to create temporary notes or draft up some code outside the project context. Instead of switching to a different application, you can use scratch files and scratch buffers.

  • Scratch files are fully functional files that support syntax highlighting, code completion, and all other features for the corresponding file type. For example, while working on one project, you may come up with an idea for a method that you could later use in another project. You can create a scratch file with a draft of the method, which is not stored in your project directory but can be opened when you're working on any other project. You can use scratch files to draft code constructs, HTTP requests, JSON documents, and so on.

  • Scratch buffers are simple text files without any coding assistance features. Scratch buffers can be used for simple task lists and notes to yourself. They are also not stored in the project directory and can be opened from any other project. You can create up to five scratch buffers with default names, which are rotated and reused by clearing the content.

By default, existing scratch files and buffers are shown in the Scratches and Consoles node in the Solution Explorer tool window . If you don't use scratches, you can hide this node: click the Options button (the Options icon) on the title bar and then clear the checkbox next to Scratches and Consoles

JetBrains Rider: Hide Scratches and Consoles

Create a scratch file

  1. Go to File | New | Scratch File or press Control+Alt+Shift+Insert. Alternatively, in the Solution Explorer tool window , right-click any area and navigate to New | Scratch File.

  2. Select the language of the scratch file.

    Scratch files of the same type are automatically numbered and added to the Scratches and Consoles directory of the Solution Explorer.

Alternatively, you can create a new scratch file with the contents of the current selection in the editor. Select some text or code, press Alt+Enter and then select Create new scratch file from selection. JetBrains Rider will attempt to detect the language of the selected fragment and use the appropriate type and extension. If it can't detect the language of the selection, JetBrains Rider will create the file with the same type and extension as the original file.

You can run a C# scratch file or any of its parts using C# Interactive.

Run a C# scratch file

  1. Select the desired part of the code in the scratch file. You can successively extend selection with Control+W or select the whole file contents with Control+A.

  2. Press Alt+Enter.

  3. Choose Send Selection to C# Interactive in the action list.

  4. JetBrains Rider will start a new interactive session in a new tab of the Run window and send the selected code to this session. If a C# interactive session is already running, the selected code will be appended to this session.

Create a scratch buffer

  • There is no dedicated menu item for the action to create a new scratch buffer, but you can use the Find Action popup Control+Shift+A and run the New Scratch Buffer action.

You can also add a shortcut for the New Scratch Buffer action as described in Customize keyboard shortcuts.

JetBrains Rider creates a text file named buffer1.txt.

The next scratch buffer you create is named buffer2.txt, and so on up to buffer5.txt. When JetBrains Rider reaches that limit, it will recreate buffer1.txt and suggest clearing the content for it. If you want to make sure JetBrains Rider does not clear the scratch buffer after you have five, you can rename it.

View all scratch files and buffers

  • Open the Solution Explorer and expand Scratches and Consoles | Scratches.

  • Use the Find Action popup Control+Shift+A to invoke the Show Scratch Files action and view all available scratch files in a popup:

    The Scratch Files popup

Location of scratch files and buffers

By default, JetBrains Rider stores scratch files and buffers in the IDE configuration directory under scratches. They are available from any IDE and project that uses this configuration directory.

Syntax

%APPDATA%\JetBrains\<product><version>

Example

C:\Users\JohnS\AppData\Roaming\JetBrains\Rider2023.3

Syntax

~/Library/Application Support/JetBrains/<product><version>

Example

~/Library/Application Support/JetBrains/Rider2023.3

Syntax

~/.config/JetBrains/<product><version>

Example

~/.config/JetBrains/Rider2023.3

To change the location of the Scratches and Consoles directory, use the idea.scratch.path platform property. To change the location of just the Scratches directory, use the idea.scratch.path/scratches platform property. For more information, refer to Advanced configuration.

Include a scratch file into your project

If a scratch file grows into something that you want to use in your project, move it into the desired directory of your project structure.

  • Drag a scratch file from the Scratches and Consoles | Scratches directory in the Solution Explorer to the target directory in your project.

  • Select a scratch file in the Scratches and Consoles | Scratches directory in the Solution Explorer and press Control+X, then select the target directory in your project and press Control+V.

Last modified: 12 January 2024