In VB.Net 2005 it's really easy. All you have to do is declare a windows form (a generic splash screen is even a type of file you can add now). Then, double click on "My Project" in the solution explorer for the project you want the splash screen for. On the "Application" tab, there is a drop down box at the bottom of the page titled splash screen. Select the form you want to use as a splash screen from the drop down box and you'll be good to go. If I recall correctly, you'll be able to access that splash screen in code through the My namespace (My.Application.SplashScreen). It's really quick and very easy, though I have noticed difficulties with windows 2000.
In C#, you will do it the old way, as was done in VS2003.
Followed the instructions to a tee for the current project I'm on and the splash screen shows....only problem is, it doesn't close and remains shown throughtout the length of the application's run. Closing the application also closes the splash screen. I checked the Application.MinimumSplashScreenDisplayTime and it was set to 2000.
Thanks, marble_eater, for your thoughts. VS2005 help states:
"The My.Application.MinimumSplashScreenDisplayTime property allows you to specify the minimum length of time you want the application's splash screen to be displayed. If the main form finishes initializing in less time than what is specified by this property, the splash screen remains until the requested amount of time passes, at which time the main form is displayed. If your application takes longer to start, the splash screen is closed once the main form becomes active."
From this I gather that it is not necessary to explicitly close the splashscreen. I cannot think why the splashscreen for my project continues to display throughout the length of the app's run.
You don't explicitly show the spashscreen yourself, do you? Assuming the answer is no, maybe you should carefully check any code in the splash screen (consider checking designer code too, just to be sure) and make sure there is no code that would prevent the form from closing.
The splash screen features for VB8 are new and could easily be buggy. Case in point, it doesn't work on a Windows 2000 machine. If it's not working exactly as documented, I wouldn't get too bent out of shape over it. Check to make sure, as marble_eater has already suggested that you are using it as directed. If you still have the problem, there is nothing wrong with hiding/closing it manually yourself even though you aren't supposed to have to do that.
There could be any number of things going wrong. The important thing is that you get it to work the way you want it to work and that no one discovers the hacks you had to put in place to make it work.