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VSIX Project Template

You can use the VSIX Project template to wrap one or more Visual Studio extensions in a VSIX project, and then publish the package on the Visual Studio Gallery Web site. 

VSIX deployment supports VSPackages, assemblies, MEF components, project templates, item templates, toolbox controls, and custom extension types.

Note Note

To use VSIX projects, you must install the Visual Studio 2013 SDK. For more information about the Visual Studio SDK, see Extending Visual Studio Overview. To find out how to download the Visual Studio SDK, see Visual Studio Extensibility Developer Center on the MSDN Web site.

The VSIX Project template is available in the New Project dialog box. Expand either the Visual Basic node or the Visual C# node, and then choose Extensibility.

The VSIX project template has two main uses:

  • To deploy project templates, item templates, and other extensions that do not already have VSIX support.

  • To wrap the outputs of multiple extensions into one deployment package.

You do not have to use the VSIX Project template to deploy VSPackages or other kinds of extensions that already have VSIX support.

You can package an existing extension, or an extension that does not already have VSIX support, by wrapping it in an empty VSIX project. The extension to be wrapped must be of a type that is supported by the VSIX schema.

To package an extension by using a VSIX project

  1. Build the projects that make up your extension.

  2. Create a VSIX project by using the VSIX Project template.

    Source.extension.vsixmanifest opens in Manifest Designer.

  3. On the Assets tab, choose the New button.

    The Add New Asset dialog box appears.

  4. In the Type list, choose the type of extension to add.

  5. To add an extension or content element that's included in the current solution (for example, an item template or a compiled assembly), perform the following steps:

    1. In the Source list, choose A project in current solution.

    2. In the Project list, choose the name of the extension.

    3. In the Embed in this folder box, enter the name of a folder in which to embed the asset, and then choose the OK button.

  6. To add an extension or content element that isn't included in the current solution, perform the following steps:

    1. In the Source list box, choose File on filesystem.

    2. In the Path field, enter the full path to the compiled or compressed extension file, or use the Browse button to browse to the file.

    3. In the Embed in this folder box, enter the name of a folder in which to embed the asset, and then choose the OK button.

  7. If you want your package to include additional extensions, add them in the same manner.

  8. Build the solution.

    Visual Studio builds a .vsix file that contains a VSIX manifest file, a [Content_Types].xml file, and all of the extension assets that you added to the project.

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