Microsoft Visual Studio Installer Projects

Microsoft Free

This official Microsoft extension provides support for Visual Studio Installer Projects in Visual Studio 2013

(86) Review
Visual Studio
Download (103,506)
E-mail Twitter Digg Facebook
Add to favorites
Reviews (86)
Q and A (84)
Sign in to write a review
Sort by:

by Robert te Kaat - Docati | February 11 2015

My first installer immediately fails. The log shows WEBCA_SetTARGETSITE. Some googling tells me I need to enable IIS6 compatibility feature. Why is that?

by JakeTanz | January 25 2015

Is there a tutorial on how to use this extension? It is my first time trying to use an installer.


by Chin Peng | January 22 2015

This was awesome! However, I found the setup file created from this installer will have problem running in Windows XP.

by behzad_garossiyan | January 22 2015

It was very excellent

by Farhad Khalaj | January 21 2015

by Sean986 | January 12 2015

So glad this came back. The only problem I found is that my msi wouldn't run on POSReady 2009 and Windows XP but I resolved this by following the advice from

by JayP337 | December 17 2014

by Stefan Cuypers | December 17 2014

Great to have this back. I finally could upgrade to VS2013 (we use setup projects a lot and are using it to create .msm files which is not supported by the Installshield included).
We found one problem with it though: if we add the Project Output from an SQL CLR project Visual Studio seems to crash when building the setup.

by macaiver | December 15 2014

by Rocker1984 | November 16 2014

For the people who are complaining that VS 2013 is crashing, do you by any chance have "Web Essentials" add on installed? I found out that these two extensions don't play well together. Disabling the "Web Essentials" add on fixes the crash on open issue for me.

by Keith Culpepper | November 13 2014

We were unhappy with the limited capabilities of InstallShield LE, so we discovered this extension and couldn't be happier! Thank you Microsoft team!

by Hans Putman | November 05 2014

Thanks for re-introducing the old-fashioned installer. The "free" InstallShield is terrible and the price of the paid version is so outrageous that I didn't even consider trying it.

by wbsutphin | November 05 2014

I have the same problem as Nick below opening an old installer (web installer actually). VS crashes hard. Had to uninstall to get at the solution to remove the install project.


by Brad Pendley | November 03 2014

Great Work!!!

by csionurb | October 29 2014

Great !

All is ok, old VS2010 projects are compatibles

Thanks a lot


by Atmeitsatme | October 27 2014

I thought simply upgrade to VS2013 with this add in, but packages does not work on Windows 2003 SP2.
I have to redo everything with InstallShield !!!

This extension does not provides the same functionality that currently exists in Visual Studio 2010 for Visual Studio Installer projects !!!

by Nick Foster | October 15 2014

Installed this in VS2013 so I could open a VS2010 Windows Service project that had an installer.

Extension installed ok. Every time I try to open the project Visual Studio crashed.

Uninstalling the extension allowed me to open the solution (minus the setup project).

by John-Peter | October 02 2014

Most glad when finding out that finally IT is back. Most sad when realizing that it doesn't work on XP (1/4 market share!). MS, please bring that back too. Pleeeeaaaase.

by Public Wireless | September 25 2014

It's appeared to work for me with one glitch.

I imported into Visual Studio 2013 a Setup and Deployment project created in Visual Studio 2010. In my project, I had selected 'Download prerequisites from the same location as my application. But when I tried to build my setup project, I was getting an error such as :

To enable 'Download prerequisites from the same location as my application' in the Prerequisites dialog box, you must download file 'XXXXXXXX' for item 'XXXXXXX' to your local machine. For more information, see

In this case, the link was actually useful for solving the problem. Basically I had to download the MSIs and then copy them to the Bootstrapper folder where it checks--in my case: C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v8.1A\Bootstrapper\Packages\<folder for prerequisite>\

When I was using Visual Studio 2010 I didn't have to do this--the redistributable MSIs were already in the correct bootstrapper folder.

Maybe the Visual Studio Installer Projects Extension should add them as part of the install to avoid this hastle for others

by Tirinti | September 25 2014

It doesn't work with 64bit version Windows Services.
the same is with installshield.
Only the WIX works properly.

1 - 20 of 86 Items   
Sign in to start a discussion

  • setup blocked
    1 Posts | Last post Mon 4:38 PM
    • i tried to install this extension to VS ultimate 2015 but it fails?
      is there any solution ?
  • VS2013 installer does not do upgrade installation correctly
    2 Posts | Last post Mon 4:08 AM
    • Although the Productcode is different, RemovePreviousVersions is true, Version is higher, file versions of DLLs are higher an upgrade installation seems to run through without any errors (in UI). But if you look in the installation folder then only a new DLL is placed there, all the others that should have been replaced are deleted. Registry settings are fine. A new installation is also fine. Has someone similar experiences? The setup properties are the same as in the installer we build with VS2008. There the upgrade installation worked.
    • This is also happening with our software. RemocvePreviousVersions=true installation executes OK with no errors.
      1. the uninstall of the older product’s files runs OK
      2. COM deregister of older product fails
      3. Deployment of all files from the new setup package fails
      4. COM registration of new product is OK (although points to a non-existent file and is a duplicate)
      Setting RemoveProviousVersions=false completes the install OK - old files are overwritten and our software runs OK. Both old and new versions are displayed in "Programs and Features" list - as you'd expect I suppose.
      Has anybody come up with a workaround?
  • "Unsupported This version of Visual Studio is unable to open the following projects. The project types may not be installed or this version of Visual Studio may not support them."
    1 Posts | Last post February 18, 2015
    • This extension is not working with my copy of Visual Studio 2013.. I believe it is because it is not installed in the default "C:\" hard drive on Windows 7 x64...
      Does anyone know a workaround to using this extension with Visual Studio 2013 installed on a different hard drive (other than the primary one)?
  • Keep the GUIDs the same from save to save
    1 Posts | Last post February 11, 2015
    • Is there a reason that the GUIDs are being regenerated each time the installer project is saved?  It makes it almost impossible to see what was changed by doing a diff.  It would make it so much easier if the GUIDs would stay the same.  I realize that some GUIDs need to change.  I'm more referring to the internal GUIDs that stitch the installer together.
  • HRESULT = '8000000A' when validating
    3 Posts | Last post February 09, 2015
    • I'm still getting the error "An error occurred while validating.  HRESULT = '8000000A'" when running from command line. I have set HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\12.0_Config\MSBuild\EnableOutOfProcBuild to 0.
      Using version with VS 2013 update 4.
      Any new version coming soon?
    • +1 I'm still getting this as well.
    • Hi All,
      I've indeed the same problem with my TFS automated builds.
      I try to launch the msi generation by using all the steps described in the following post ( but it doesn't work.
      My build server currently runs with TFS 2013 and a VS 2013 version having this plugin but it doesn't work.
      I have set the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\12.0_Config\MSBuild\EnableOutOfProcBuild registry value to 0 but it works only if i launch the msi generation through Visual Studio 2013...
      It is really a shame that Microsoft doesn't fix this issue when i see that we are a lot to wait for a VALUABLE fix !!!
  • Error executing Installer from CMD Line
    10 Posts | Last post February 06, 2015
    • Hello,
      We were so happy to see a REAL installer back in VS2013, InstallSheild LE is terrible and so crippled its near useless. 
      I have a simple website to deploy thats built using our build server from the command line - we constantly get the following error. 
      ------ Starting pre-build validation for project 'HelpDeskVSInstaller'  
      ------ ERROR: An error occurred while validating.  HRESULT = '8000000A'
      ------ Pre-build validation for project 'HelpDeskVSInstaller' completed 
      I have been able to replicate this on my local box by running the installer from the command line:
      C:\Windows\system32\cmd.exe /s /c ""C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 12.0\Common7\IDE\devenv" "Payzone.Web.sln" /Rebuild Release /Project VSInstaller"
      The installer is able to be built from inside VS2013 IDE. Can you let me know how I can fix this issue? 
    • We have the same error while building from command line. The installer builds OK from GUI.
    has an explanation for older Visual Studio versions. I wonder if the problem was addressed in VS 2013 and this extension.
    • It seems that there is more than 1 person with this issue - Is anyone from Microsoft care to comment on this on how to get around it.
      We need to build from the command line and the gui is not an option for us. The installer should work from the command line.
      I have removed all the extra lines in the build as per the question / answer on stack overflow referenced by Aurimas above.
      This is still not working from the command line. 
      PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get back to us on a how to fix or if its not going to be fixed so we can start using an installer that does what it says on the tin!!
    • Same problem here, it's very frustrating and now we can't script Builds from our Build server and therefore will still need to find another way to Build the product. Works fantastically from the UI though, but not really practical to deliver it this way and to be honest it should work the same as in the UI
    • You van add my name to the list. We have two vdproj's in our makefile - one works correctly the other fails with 8000000A
      Please fix or describe a workaround.
    • BUMP BUMP -
      Cmon guys someone must be aware of this and have a fix or workaround? I cannot believe that there hasnt even been a response to this from VS Team...... 
      We are basically not going to use Microsoft installers for any future projects because of the current shambles of the recent releases.....
    • Any update to this issue? We rely on the command line ability of VDPROJ since MSBUILD does not support installer projects. Hopefully a fix is in the works.
    • As an update - I did try the workaround posted on the main page with v1.0.0.0 release - and this fixes issues when executing from the command line for the current logged in account - but invoking the same command line parameters from our build process still fails with the HRESULT = '8000000A' error on the same server. Does the registry key have to be added elsewhere when running as a TFS service account?
    • Did this ever get resolved!!?!?  We have the same problem and it really sucks we have to build these in the GUI every time. Makes our build process take a lot longer!
    • Ping! Does anyone read this thread? Is there going to be any kind of resolution of this issue?
  • Transform web.config for Web Application
    1 Posts | Last post February 03, 2015
    • Anyone know if this extension is able to transform web.config files for a Web Application (release, debug, etc) the way Studio does with the "Publish" option?
      Been using Wix til now which works ok but is high maintenance.  
  • Cannot add shortcuts to the Primary Output
    3 Posts | Last post January 29, 2015
    • I am trying to add application shortcuts in the "File System Editor" like in VS 2010, but it is not possible.
      I only have the option to create a shortcut to, for example, the 'Application Folder'.
      I have also tried to use the Add --> Project Output context menu, but the output is not added. It just messes up the Deployment Project File, so I have to open it in Notepad and remove the entries again manually.
      Is this a known issue? Have anyone else experienced this issue? Does anyone have a solution or workaround for it?
    • Same problem here. It is an upgrade from a VS2010 solution as well. Perhaps it doesn't upgrade properly?
    • A little more - it only allows shortcuts to the "Active" configuration, and not to a chosen configuration (e.g. "Release").
  • Launch condition bug for .Net 4.5 and above
    1 Posts | Last post January 28, 2015
    • Launch Conditions for .Net 4.5 and above only checks for the "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\NET Framework Setup\NDP\v4\Full" registry, instead of checking the value of the Release DWORD. 
      To confirm this I have created an installer with a launch condition of .Net 4.5.2 and ran it successfully on a clean Windows Server 2012 R2 machine without issue (4.5.1 is standard on Server 2012 R2). When trying to run the installed software, it crashed as 4.5.2 was not present on the target machine. 
      I have also confirmed this on a 2008 R2 machine with .Net 4.0 installed – the launch condition was successful in recognising that the "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\NET Framework Setup\NDP\v4\Full" registry was missing, but after installing .Net 4.5 (2 versions below the required 4.5.2) which created the "Full" subkey, the launch condition message was not shown and the installer ran. 
      The information on the MS page describes the values of the Release DWORD that correspond to the versions of the .Net Framework, and it would seem that this is not being checked at present.
  • KB 2829760 fixes update 4 problem
    1 Posts | Last post January 21, 2015
    • Yesterday I installed KB 2829760 which fixes the the problem with Update 4. 
      I am now able to import .vdproj files into my solution and I have successfully produced a new installer package. 
      So it would seem this Visual Studio Installer Projects extension is now working again. 
1 - 10 of 84 Items