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The VSIP Program 

Visual Studio 2005
Extensibility Guided Tour Send comments on this topic.
The VSIP Program

Glossary Item Box

The Visual Studio Industry Partner Program

Visual Studio 2005 builds upon the successes of the VSIP program

Thousands of organizations known as Visual Studio Industry Partners (VSIP) successfully partnered with Microsoft to extend Visual Studio 2003. These organizations helped drive the success of Visual Studio 2003 by providing developers and organizations with valuable tools, designers, control suites, and other enhancements needed to help keep developers productive. One of the key goals of Visual Studio 2005 was to re-affirm Microsoft’s commitment to these developers, organizations, and partners by creating a rich framework allowing improved extensibility, and by helping to create a mass market ripe with commercial viability. Visual Studio 2005 was therefore built from the ground up to ensure that partners would be comfortable, confident, and successful in extending Visual Studio to meet customer needs. Microsoft has also been working on exposing more and more of the Visual Studio API through managed interfaces to provide extensibility developers greater productivity by permitting them to develop more of their solutions in managed, or .NET, code.

How the VSIP Program Benefits Partners

Being able to leverage the same toolset that Microsoft used to build Visual Studio 2005 provides for a strong financial prospect on its own (given the market penetration of Visual Studio). But for partners to be truly successful, they need more than just access to the framework used to build Visual Studio 2005. Accordingly, the Visual Studio Industry Partner (VSIP) program was designed to provide access to the other resources that partners need to be successful. In addition to providing access to the Visual Studio SDK, partner membership includes access to whitepapers outlying the strengths, key concepts, and even roadmaps of future intentions. Additionally, Visual Studio Industry Partners are also provided with hands-on labs, opportunities to market directly with (or through) Microsoft, as well as other resources (like this Guided Tour). All of these resources are aimed at providing partners with the key resources that they need to succeed, because as partners succeed in viably extending Visual Studio for customers, Visual Studio becomes a stronger offering, which benefits Microsoft. Microsoft therefore has a vested interest in ensuring that partners succeed, and is constantly working on improving the VSIP program and its offerings to better address partner needs and concerns.

Examples of Visual Studio 2005 Extensibility in this Guided Tour

While non-partners will be able to profit from some of the simpler content in this Guided Tour, the tour’s primary focus in on providing new partners with an understanding of the benefits of partnership, as well as providing a sound understanding of the key concepts involved in extending Visual Studio safely, effectively, and successfully. After the initial introduction of partner specific benefits, and introductions to key concepts, this tour will begin to focus, through overviews and hands-on labs, on the various ways in which to extend Visual Studio. These simple extensibility labs are designed to provide a quick way for developers to come up to speed with the core concepts involved, and will begin with examples of creating Macros and Add-ins – while introducing core components and aspects of the Visual Studio Automation Model. Following these simple extensibility examples, additional examples will focus on creating a sample extension in a series of walkthroughs that demonstrate how to build and interact with VsPackages – the deepest and most powerful way to integrate extensions into Visual Studio. Subsequent information and walkthroughs will showcase the functionality and extensibility possible in Visual Studio Team System. Finally, the concluding labs in this Guided Tour will focus on the mechanics of bundling and distributing packages – key components in ensuring that partners are able to simply, and consistently, distribute their commercial components for distribution with Visual Studio for use by organizations and developers worldwide.