I suggest you ...

Bring back the basic setup and deployment project type Visual Studio Installer.

You really need to bring back the basic Setup and Deployment project name Visual Studio Installer. It was a clean, simple, and effective installer for home grown applications that were to be deployed internally. I downloaded and used InstallShield LE and it's too complicated and overblown to build simple effective install/uninstall capabilities. Why did you remove it to begin with? We have to support desktop applications for the foreseeable future.

6,175 votes
Sign in
Password icon
Signed in as (Sign out)
You have left! (?) (thinking…)
Jeff shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

We have just released an extension which delivers the Visual Studio Installer projects functionality present in Visual Studio 2010 for Visual Studio 2013.

To find out more please read Visual Studio Installer Projects Extension

Tony Goodhew, Program Manager, VS Pro

We have more information on the next version of InstallShield Limited Edition that will be included in Visual Studio 2013.

What’s new in Visual Studio 2013 and InstallShield Limited Edition

We’d like to thank you all for your comments on this UserVoice entry. We have been discussing the comments on InstallShield Limited Edition (ISLE) raised here with Flexera and we are currently working with them to address the top issues. At this stage we have no plans to include the former Visual Studio Setup Projects in future product versions but we will continue to work with Flexera and the community to ensure Visual Studio customers’ setup needs will be met with no-cost tooling that supports a broad range of scenarios.

Tony Goodhew, Program Manager, VS Pro.


Sign in
Password icon
Signed in as (Sign out)
  • Ramanathan. RM commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I am very much disappointed after installing the trial version of visual studio 2015 professional edition, that there is no setup and deployment project included. So i dropped the idea of buying the new version. My VS 2010 is the best for me.

  • Giles Middleton commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    After many years of suffering InstallShield, we reverted to .VDPROJ files using the 2015 Visual Studio Installer Projects extension. It feels ten times faster to work with and compile/build.

    However - we are suffering big issues because of the flaky 'auto-detect dependencies' feature, and excluded items not working in a multi-developer environment. We need to turn this off!

    If anyone else is suffering from auto-detect dependencies including files it shouldn't and excluded files coming back, causing CI build failures - please upvote this MSConnect issue https://connect.microsoft.com/VisualStudio/feedback/details/1900756

  • wsfaso commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Copy from VS 2010 C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 10.0\Common7\IDE\ItemTemplates\VisualBasic\General\1033\installer.zip and place that into the corresponding directory for VS2013

    This trick does not seem to work for VS2015

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This is really inconvenient for legacy product lines that have been built on 2012. Here use our product but no way to create an exe?

  • Dennis Robinson commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Having no decent tools for creating installers in VS2012 seems like a pretty big over-site. It this really something considered a small change only effecting a minor subset of developers ? Not worth the development effort ?
    At this point moving to 2013 seems like the way to go. Just jump feet first into whatever surprises await me there.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I agree that the Install Shield method is too bloated. Trying to deploy a very simple application to some client computers and I end up with 199+ errors when building the setup.exe. ARGHH it was so much simpler in VB 6.0

  • Charles Ritchea commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I used to be like you until I took a shot to the NAnt. Just use WiX people. It's open source and the future. It doesn't require Visual Studio to build on your build server, and it is a lot more powerful. Just install the WiX extension. It's a complete lie that you can't create an installer with Visual Studio like @JD says.

  • JD commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    "declined" ... you are joking right! how log do you think people will use VS if they can not create an install package with it?

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Well... after reading 20 pages worth of negative comments I have to say I totally agree with all these other developers. Not only is Flexera Installshield LE a piece of **** but being forced to pay $2k for a version of a comparative MS tool that was free and worked very well is just a money grab. I also feel that the obfuscator "PreEmptive Dotfuscator CE" is useless. You now have to pay $200 for the same features that worked free from within VS2008.

    Microsoft, I don't know who's running things there now, but I have been an MS software developer for over 30 years and I have say that it may be time to move on. Please please talk to your customers before continuing to introduce improved versions of your development toosl that are no improvement at all !!!

  • Harvey Green commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Glad this extension provides some support at least ... we really need to keep the setup & deployment project for our LOB apps.

  • Roy Hughes commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Is there any actual support for this update? I don't know who to contact about problems with this extension. I can't get the package to install, is it becasue I am using VS 2012 Ultimate? The error log says it can't find the Professional 2013 version or something..... so is this absolutely only for 2013??? What about the people who upgraded from 2010 to 2012? Now I have to do workaround code just to do something that the internal updater did on its own!

  • Basic commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I'm surrounded by Java people and things like this make it damned hard to support MS products.

    "Pay us thousands per seat for the best developer tool on the market, Then pay these other guys for an installer that's so awful most of you stopped using it in the 90s. You don't want to do that? No worries, there's this other thing on Codeplex that works great. Unfortunately, it needs a week of poring through xml files to understand and use but hey, we don't care about your time"

    I guess those of us on 2012 for the next few years are just SOL then.

  • Phil Rogers commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Having ongoing solutions/projects that include a deployment project, I was irritated to discover the lack of support for them. Installshield Limited Edition doesn't cut it for me and I'm not prepared to pay Flexera for something that I used to be able to do for free, so I've moved over to the free, open source, Inno Setup. Ok, it doesn't build MSI, but I only need a setup.exe and it does the job perfectly.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    please keep support the basic setup and deployment in future visual studio versions

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    GUI installers are anti-DevOps. Please do *not* provide this, it only learns noob developers making a mess of servers, aka DoingItWrong.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I can't stand the flexera ****. The projects I built on windows 8.1 don't work on my back up windows 7 build machine, causing extreme frustration. just dump it.

Feedback and Knowledge Base