How to Use GitHub Copilot AI Coding Assistant in VS Code Editor

GitHub Copilot is an AI-powered coding assistant that helps developers write code faster and more efficiently. It is developed by GitHub in collaboration with OpenAI and uses machine learning to provide suggestions and auto-completions as you code in Visual Studio Code.


To use GitHub Copilot, you need:

  • An active GitHub Copilot subscription (free trial or paid)
  • Visual Studio Code editor installed

Installing the GitHub Copilot Extension

Installing GitHub Copilot extension in VS Code is simple:

  1. Open Extensions sidebar
  2. Search for GitHub Copilot
  3. Click on Install
  4. Restart VS Code after installation

You’ll see the Copilot icon activated at the bottom of the editor once it is ready to use.

Using GitHub Copilot Suggestions

As you start typing code, GitHub Copilot analyzes your code context and provides autocomplete suggestions.

You can choose to accept the suggestions or ignore them. If you accept a suggestion, the corresponding code gets added to your file.

Some ways to leverage Copilot suggestions:

  • Boilerplate code – Get entire boilerplate code for starting projects
  • Code patterns – Implement standard code patterns quickly
  • Repetitive code – Avoid writing duplicate sections of code
  • Documentation – Get suggestions for code documentation
  • Code translation – Convert code between programming languages

Configuring GitHub Copilot

You can customize GitHub Copilot as per your preferences:

  • Enable/disable suggestions
  • Control frequency of suggestions
  • Select languages to enable
  • Set keyboard shortcuts
  • Control indent sizes, quote styles etc.

The settings are available in the Extensions section under GitHub Copilot extension.

GitHub Copilot Chat

In addition to inline suggestions, you can get help from Copilot via chat interface in 3 ways:

  • Chat View – Ask coding related questions and get suggestions
  • Inline Chat – Discuss right within your code file
  • Quick Chat – Get quick answers without leaving your code

The chat features make it easy to get assistance from Copilot on demand.

Best Practices

To get the most out of GitHub Copilot, follow these best practices:

  • Provide detailed comments explaining what you want the code to do
  • Use good coding practices and patterns for better suggestions
  • Review the suggestions before accepting them
  • Ensure security of code snippets generated
  • Ask specific chat questions when stuck to get helpful answers


GitHub Copilot integration with VS Code Editor enhances developer productivity by reducing repetitive coding tasks. Configuring Copilot as per your style and leveraging its suggestions and chat features appropriately can boost your coding efficiency.

As an experienced VS Code user, I find GitHub Copilot extremely helpful. The AI-powered suggestions save me a lot of time and effort while writing code. I also rely on Copilot chat view to get quick solutions whenever I am stuck.

Overall, GitHub Copilot is transforming how developers write and think about code. Its continuously improving suggestions and versatile chat interface add a new dimension to the coding experience in Visual Studio Code.