In Easy Steps Articles

July 21, 2023

What is Visual Basic?

The Visual Basic programming language offers the easiest way to write programs for Windows. This means you can easily create your own programs to give maximum control over your computer, and automate your work to be more productive. Also, programming with Visual Basic is fun!

Like other programming languages, Visual Basic comprises a number of significant “keywords” and a set of syntax rules. Beginners often find its syntax simpler than other programming languages, making Visual Basic a popular first choice to learn.

Although writing programs can be complex, Visual Basic makes it easy to get started. You can choose how far to go. Another advantage of Visual Basic is that it works with Microsoft 365 applications and with the Windows Script Host within the Windows operating system – so the possibilities are immense…

  • Visual Basic (VB) – quite simply the best programming language for the novice or hobbyist to begin creating their own standalone Windows applications, fast.
  • Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) – an implementation of Visual Basic that is built into Microsoft 365 applications. It runs within a host rather than as a standalone application.
  • Visual Basic Script (VBScript) – a derivative of Visual Basic that can be used for Windows scripting.


Visual Basic derives from an earlier simple language called BASIC – an acronym:


The “Visual” part was added later as many tasks can now be accomplished visually, without actually writing any code.


In order to create Windows applications with the Visual Basic programming language, you will first need to install a Visual Studio Integrated Development Environment (IDE).

Microsoft Visual Studio is the professional development tool that provides a fully Integrated Development Environment for Visual Basic, Visual C++, and Visual C#. Within its IDE, code can be written in any of these languages to create Windows applications.

Visual Studio Community edition is a streamlined version of Visual Studio, specially created for those people learning programming. It has a simplified user interface and omits advanced features of the professional edition to avoid confusion. Within its IDE, code can be written in the Visual Basic programming language to create Windows applications.

Both Visual Studio and Visual Studio Community provide a Visual Basic IDE for Visual Basic programming. Unlike the fully-featured Visual Studio product, the Visual Studio Community edition is completely free and can be downloaded from


Find out more about Visual Basic and get started with it with Visual Basic in easy steps, 7th edition (updated for Visual Basic 2022 edition – Visual Basic 17.0)

Available now from our online shop!

£11.99 paperback / £9.99 ebook (+ VAT/tax where applicable)

192 pages
By Mike McGrath
ISBN: 9781840789768


Also available from other book retailers including Amazon, WHSmith, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, and Google Play Books




Sign up to our


Our newsletters inform you of new and forthcoming titles, handy tips, and other updates and special offers. You can opt out anytime.

"*" indicates required fields

By In Easy Steps Team


We are sorry to let you go...

Would you mind giving us your feedback or reason of cancelling the subscription?


"*" indicates required fields

Reason For Cancellation*