Make Visual Studio Code Salesforce Ready

Visual Studio Code has a lot of features that make it a great development environment. In this step we install Salesforce CLI and Salesforce Extensions for VS Code, and set up your Trailhead Playground to enhance what you can do with the IDE.

Install the Command Line Interface (CLI)

You can use Salesforce CLI to control the full application life cycle of your Salesforce apps. Through the CLI, you can easily create or connect to environments for development and testing, and synchronize metadata and code between your orgs and a version control system.

  1. Download the CLI using the appropriate link below.
  2. Operating System
    Link to Installer
    Windows 32-bit
    Windows 64-bit
    Debian/Ubuntu 64
    Download the archive from one of the URLs in the manifest, extract the archive, then run the ./install script.
    Debian/Ubuntu x86
    Download the archive from one of the URLs in the manifest, extract the archive, then run the ./install script.
  3. Install the CLI through the installer.
  4. Make sure the CLI is properly installed. Open the terminal app in macOS or the Command Prompt in Windows, and enter sfdx.

You should see something like this: 

Salesforce CLI

    sfdx-cli/7.58.2 darwin-x64 node-v14.3.0
    $ sfdx [COMMAND]
    autocmplt     display autocomplete installation instructions
    autocomplete  display autocomplete installation instructions
    commands      list all the commands
    force         tools for the Salesforce developer
    help          display help for sfdx
    plugins       add/remove/create CLI plug-ins
    update        update the sfdx CLI
    which         show which plugin a command is in
    Run help for each topic below to view subcommands
    autocmplt     display autocomplete installation instructions
    autocomplete  display autocomplete installation instructions
    cmdt          commands for custom metadata
    commands      list all the commands
    dependency    Sample command line utilities around the Salesforce Dependencies API implemented as SFDX plugin.
    force         tools for the Salesforce developer
    plugins       add/remove/create CLI plug-ins
    shane         get an access token from an email and a .pem file, either passed in or from environment variables


Give your terminal app a moment to return this result. It can take several seconds.

Install the Salesforce Extension Pack

Now that we have Salesforce CLI installed, we can supercharge Visual Studio Code by installing the Salesforce Extension Pack. The extension pack installs the essential Salesforce extensions all at once, saving you from selecting each one individually. 

The extensions provide deep integrations with Salesforce tooling throughout VS Code. You can invoke Salesforce CLI from a variety of places (VS Code menus, shortcut keys, and right-click context menus). 

New functionality shows up as you're working, including:

  • Language Services for Apex
  • Language Services for Visualforce
  • Language Services for Lightning Components (Aura and Lightning Web Components)
  • Integrations in the activity bar for Apex tests and Replay Debugger.
  1. Launch Visual Studio Code.
  2. On the left toolbar, click Extensions.
  3. Enter Salesforce Extension Pack in the search field. Visual Studio Code search result for Salesforce extension pack.
  4. Click on Salesforce Extension Pack.
  5. Click Install. The top of the pack details window with the green Install button.
  6. Close and relaunch Visual Studio Code to complete the installation.
  7. Note


    Some features in Salesforce Extensions for VS Code depend upon the Java Platform, Standard Edition Development Kit (JDK). You need to have either version 8 or version 11 of the JDK installed. Once you install JDK8 or JDK11, you can follow the steps here to configure your setup.

Setup Your Trailhead Playground

  1. To create a new Trailhead Playground, click the dropdown at the end of this step and select Create a Trailhead Playground. The Create a Trailhead Playground dropdown in a module's hands-on challenge.
  2. Once you have a Trailhead Playground, click Launch.
  3. Click Setup The Setup gear icon..
  4. Enter Users in Quick Find box and select Users.
  5. Locate your name on the list of users.
  6. Check the box next to your name. Make note of the username. This is the username for your Trailhead Playground.
  7. Click Reset Password(s) and OK. This sends a password reset email to the email address associated with your username. Check your spam folder if you don't see the email. Reset your Trailhead Playground password on the Users page in Setup.
  8. Click the link in the email.
  9. Set your password.

We won't check any of your setup. Click Verify Step to go to the next step in the project.

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What’s in it for you?
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Source: Trailblazer Community Impact Survey 2019