Namespace documentation on a .Net project (Sandcastle)?


.Net Problem Overview

I started using Sandcastle some time ago to generate a Documentation Website for one of our projects. It's working quite well but we've always only written documentation for classes, methods, properties (...) in our project and had completely separate documentation for the overall project and project parts/modules/namespaces. It would be nice if I could merge that documentation together and add respective documentation to the generated helper files but I can't figure out how to do it.

Just adding comments to the namespace declaration doesn't seem to work (C#):

/// <summary>
/// My short namespace description
/// </summary>
namespace MyNamespace { ... }

Does anyone know how to do this? I know it's possible somehow and it would be really nice to have... :)

.Net Solutions

Solution 1 - .Net

Sandcastle also supports the ndoc-style namespace documentation, which allows you to stick the documentation in the source files:

Simply create a non-public class called NamespaceDoc in the namespace you want to document, and the xml doc comment for that class will be used for the namespace.

Adorn it with a [CompilerGenerated] attribute to prevent the class itself from showing up in the documentation.


namespace Some.Test
    /// <summary>
	/// The <see cref="Some.Test"/> namespace contains classes for ....
	/// </summary>

	class NamespaceDoc

The work item in SandCastle is located here.

Solution 2 - .Net

If you use Sandcastle Help File Builder there is a dialog to enter the Namespace summaries. (Apparently also support for defining a specific class, but I wouldn't prefer it..)

From the feature list:

> Definition of project summary and > namespace summary comments that will > appear in the help file. You can also > easily indicate which namespaces to > include or exclude from the help file. > Support is also included for > specifying namespace comments via a > NamespaceDoc class within each > namespace.

Solution 3 - .Net

Use Sandcastle Help File Builder. It allows to specify namespace descriptions in the XML project file


<namespaceSummaryItem name="System" isDocumented="True">
    Generic interfaces and helper classes.



Solution 4 - .Net

I know it's an old post, but this may be of help to someone else.

Following this link, you can set a description for the namespaces without the need of adding a non-public class to your project.

> To edit the namespace summaries, expand the Summaries section within the Project Properties tab in SHFB. You will see a setting named, "NamespaceSummaries", which initially shows the value, "(None)". Click the setting to select it and a button showing an ellipsis symbol (...) appears. Click this button to display the Namespace Summaries dialog box, pictured below:

enter image description here

Solution 5 - .Net

You cant add references that way - do it via NamespaceDoc.cs instances


/// <summary> /// Concrete implementation of see cref="IInterface" using see cref="Concrete" /// </summary> class NamespaceDoc { }

see here

Solution 6 - .Net

I see documentation for an "External XML Comments Files". Showing a schema like:


If this is placed in a separate file, what would the extension be (xml/aml) and can this be used in the Visual Studio project?

Solution 7 - .Net

Here is the VB.Net version of the C# code snippet shown in Tuinstoelen's accepted answer.

I am leaving this answer for those who find this question vis Google and need the VB version, since there is a gotcha waiting if you try to translate form the C# directly.

Namespace Global.TestNamespace
    ''' <summary>
    ''' The <see cref="TestNamespace"/> namespace contains classes for ....
    ''' </summary>
    Class NamespaceDoc
    End Class
End Namespace

Note the "Global." prepended to namespace to be documented. At least for my VB project configuration, this was necessary so that the name of the namespace is not nested inside the root namespace, but is the name of the root namespace. Before I prepended the "Global.", the compiler was generating a summary for "TestNamespace.TestNamespace", rather than just "TestNamespace". Given that incorrect info in the compiler generated XML file, SandCastle was not recognizing the summary as belonging to the correct namespace.


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Content TypeOriginal AuthorOriginal Content on Stackoverflow
QuestionBenView Question on Stackoverflow
Solution 1 - .NetTuinstoelenView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 2 - .NetDavy LandmanView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 3 - .NetRinat AbdullinView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 4 - .NetLuisView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 5 - .Netuser1587804View Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 6 - .NetJohnKozView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 7 - .NetB PeteView Answer on Stackoverflow