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Creating Office Solutions in Visual Studio

You can use Visual Studio Tools for Office to create document-level solutions and application-level solutions. The projects that are available to you depend on which combination of products you have installed. For more information, see Features Available by Product Combination.

Document-level projects support Microsoft Office Word 2003 and Microsoft Office Excel 2003. They include two main parts: a Microsoft Office 2003 document and an assembly. The document can be a Word document (.doc), a Word template (.dot), an Excel workbook (.xls), or an Excel template (.xlt). The assembly is a .dll file generated from a Visual Basic (.vb) or C# (.cs) file. The assembly contains managed code that adds functionality to the document.

Application-level projects support a variety of applications in Microsoft Office 2003 and the 2007 Microsoft Office system. These projects consist of an assembly that contains the functionality of the add-in. The assembly is a .dll file that is loaded when the Microsoft Office application is started. An add-in has access to all types in the object model of the application.

In This Section

How to: Create Visual Studio Tools for Office Projects

Describes how to use the Visual Studio Tools for Office Project Wizard to create a Visual Studio Tools for Office project.

Visual Studio Tools for Office Project Templates Overview

Describes the project templates included with Visual Studio Tools for Office.

Visual Studio Tools for Office Project Events

Describes the Startup event and Shutdown event, which are included in Visual Studio Tools for Office projects.

Properties in Visual Studio Tools for Office Projects

Describes the properties that are exposed in the Properties window.

Document vs. Template Files

Discusses the different ways to make your Word document available to your users and briefly describes the advantages of each.

Limitations of Global Templates and Add-ins

Explains that Visual Studio Tools for Office projects are not supported as global templates or Excel add-ins.

How to: Re-enable an Application-Level Add-in That Has Been Disabled

Provides the steps to follow to re-enable add-ins if Outlook stops loading them.

Assemblies in Office Projects Overview

Explains the role of managed-code assemblies in Office projects. Also, discusses the issue of keeping the assembly with the Office document versus keeping it on a server.

Application and Deployment Manifests in Office Solutions

Explains the role of application and deployment manifests in locating assemblies for Office solutions.

How to: Open Office Solutions without Running Code

Explains how you can open a document or workbook that contains managed code extensions without running the assembly code.

How to: Set Up Configuration Information for an Office Solution

Explains how to manually add a .config file to your Office solution.

Namespace Considerations in Office Solutions

Provides guidance for changing the namespace of your solutions.

Threading Support in Office

Explains how background threads interact with the Office object model.

Collaborative Development of Office Solutions

Discusses the extra steps required to enable collaborating developers to open a solution that uses managed code extensions and test the assembly.

Globalization and Localization of Office Solutions

Discusses issues involved with localizing Office solutions, including static text, which must be handled separately from the assembly and other managed resources.

How to: Localize Excel Solutions

Demonstrates how to store strings for Microsoft Office Excel 2003 user interface elements in the project's default assembly resource file to enable localization.

Combining VBA and Managed Code Extensions

Discusses the issues involved with having Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) in a Visual Studio Tools for Office solution.

How to: Permit Code to Run Behind Documents with Restricted Permissions

Provides steps for enabling your code to access the object model of protected documents.

Information Rights Management and Managed Code Extensions Overview

Discusses the issues involved when using Information Rights Management (IRM) with Visual Studio Tools for Office solution documents.

Document Protection in Office Solutions

Explains how to work with a protected Word document in Visual Studio.

Password Protection on Office Documents

Describes the behavior of Visual Studio Tools for Office solution documents and workbooks that require a password to open.

Related Sections

Deploying Office Solutions

Provides links to information on deploying your solutions, including security concerns, as well as issues to consider when choosing a deployment method.

Common Tasks in Office Programming

Lists frequently asked questions about programming with Visual Studio Tools for Office and provides links to topics that can help solve common problems.

Programming Office Applications

Provides links to information on using managed code with Word and Excel solutions, including customizing the Office user interface, using controls on Office documents, and using actions panes.

Architecture of Visual Studio Tools for Office Solutions

Provides links to information on how Visual Studio Tools for Office solutions work, including information on the custom document properties, the data model, and the Runtime Storage Control.

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