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How to: Create and Edit Configurations

You can create several build configurations for a solution. For example, you can configure a debug build that your testers can use to find and fix problems, and you can configure different kinds of builds that you can distribute to different customers.

NoteNote

Your computer might show different names or locations for some of the Visual Studio user interface elements in the following instructions. The Visual Studio edition that you have and the settings that you use determine these elements. For more information, see Customizing Development Settings.

You can use the Configuration Manager dialog box to select or modify existing build configurations, or you can create new ones.

To open the Configuration Manager dialog box

  • In Solution Explorer, open the shortcut menu for the solution and then choose Configuration Manager.

    Note Note

    If the Configuration Manager command doesn't appear on the shortcut menu, look under the Build menu on the menu bar. If it doesn't appear there either, on the menu bar, choose Tools, Options, and then in the left pane of the Options dialog box, expand Projects and Solutions, General, and in the right pane, select the Show advanced build configurations check box.

    In the Configuration Manager dialog box, you can use the Active solution configuration drop-down list to select a solution-wide build configuration, modify an existing one, or create a new configuration. You can use the Active solution platform drop-down list to select the platform that the configuration targets, modify an existing one, or add a new platform. The Project contexts pane lists the projects in the solution. For each project, you can select a project-specific configuration and platform, modify existing ones, or create a new configuration or add a new platform. You can also select check boxes that indicate whether each project is included when you use the solution-wide configuration to build or deploy the solution.

After you set up the configurations you want, you can set project properties that are appropriate for those configurations.

To set properties based on configurations

  • In Solution Explorer, open the shortcut menu for a project and then choose Properties.

    The Property Pages window opens.

    You can set properties for your configurations. For example, for a Release configuration, you can specify that code is optimized when the solution is built, and for a Debug configuration, you can specify that the DEBUG conditional compilation symbol is included. For more information about property page settings, see Introduction to the Project Designer.

To create a project configuration

  1. Open the Configuration Manager dialog box.

  2. Select a project in the Project column.

  3. In the Configuration drop-down list for that project, choose New.

    The New Project Configuration dialog box opens.

  4. In the Name box, enter a name for the new configuration.

  5. To use the property settings from an existing project configuration, in the Copy settings from drop-down list, choose a configuration.

  6. To create a solution-wide configuration at the same time, select the Create new solution configuration check box.

To rename a project configuration

  1. Open the Configuration Manager dialog box.

  2. In the Project column, select the project that has the project configuration you want to rename.

  3. In the Configuration drop-down list for that project, choose Edit.

    The Edit Project Configurations dialog box opens.

  4. Select the project configuration name you want to change.

  5. Select Rename, and then enter a new name.

To create a solution-wide build configuration

  1. Open the Configuration Manager dialog box.

  2. In the Active solution configuration drop-down list, choose New.

    The New Solution Configuration dialog box opens.

  3. In the Name text box, enter a name for the new configuration.

  4. To use the settings from an existing solution configuration, in the Copy settings from drop-down list, choose a configuration.

  5. If you want to create project configurations at the same time, select the Create new project configurations check box.

To rename a solution-wide build configuration

  1. Open the Configuration Manager dialog box.

  2. In the Active solution configuration drop-down list, choose Edit.

    The Edit Solution Configurations dialog box opens.

  3. Select the solution configuration name you want to change.

  4. Select Rename, and then enter a new name.

To modify a solution-wide build configuration

  1. Open the Configuration Manager dialog box.

  2. In the Active solution configuration drop-down list, select the configuration you want.

  3. In the Project contexts pane, for every project, select the Configuration and Platform you want, and select whether to Build it and whether to Deploy it..

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