Start: Set up the development environment for SharePoint 2013
Learn the steps to set up a SharePoint 2013 development environment by installing SharePoint 2013 and Visual Studio 2012.
Last modified: April 02, 2015
Applies to: SharePoint Foundation 2013 | SharePoint Server 2013
First, decide what you want to build (to learn more about apps for SharePoint, see Overview of apps for SharePoint):
If you want to build solutions that use the server-side object model exclusively, we provide those steps in this article.
If you want to create and publish apps for SharePoint, you should consider getting an Office 365 developer site. Then, follow the instructions in How to: Set up an environment for developing apps for SharePoint on Office 365 and Sign up for an Office 365 Developer Subscription and set up your tools and environment.
If you want to develop apps for SharePoint for a corporate catalog—such as apps that have full control permissions—you'll work with a full installation of SharePoint 2013 on a development computer and configure that installation for app isolation. We provide the steps to set up an on-premises SharePoint installation in this article. Then, if you want to create apps for SharePoint on your on-premises installation, follow the steps in How to: Set up an on-premises development environment for apps for SharePoint.
If you have an MSDN subscription, you can quickly provision a developer image that comes with SharePoint 2013 and Visual Studio 2013 pre-installed. With Visual Studio 2013, you get all of the templates, tools, and assemblies to develop SharePoint 2013. This image also contains Windows PowerShell scripts for provisioning and configuring SharePoint 2013 with or without an Active Directory running on a different server.
If you haven’t activated the Microsoft Azure benefit that comes with your MSDN subscription, you can learn more about it at Microsoft Azure Benefit for MSDN Subscribers.
You can provision the image in the Microsoft Azure management portal and then use the pre-installed Windows PowerShell scripts.
Provision the image with the Microsoft Azure management portal
Sign in to the Microsoft Azure management portal.
Choose the plus sign (+) at the bottom of the page.
Choose Compute > Virtual Machine > From Gallery.
Scroll down the list of images, choose Visual Studio 2013, and then choose the arrow in the lower right corner.
Follow the instructions provided by the virtual machine creation wizard. We recommend an X-Large VM size for SharePoint 2013 development.
The provisioning process takes about 5-10 minutes. Once the machine has been provisioned, use Remote Desktop to connect to it.
Now you need to provision SharePoint 2013. The image comes with pre-installed Windows PowerShell scripts that will help you do this. Choose the Configure Developer Desktop shortcut icon on your desktop to get these scripts.
The scripts folder contains two scripts, one that provisions a standalone configuration of SharePoint 2013, and another that provisions SharePoint 2013 with Active Directory.
Go to Visual Studio 2013 Gallery image for MSDN subscribers for instructions on how to provision and configure the virtual machine for SharePoint 2013 development as well as documentation for the pre-installed Windows PowerShell scripts.
Once you’ve set up your development environment, you can access your source control from Visual Studio 2013 on the virtual machine by using an Azure Point-to-Site connection. See Configure a Point-to-Site VPN in the Management Portal for instructions on how to do this.
The requirements for a development environment for an installation of apps for SharePoint are less stringent and costly than the requirements for a production environment. If you are setting up a production environment installation, see Overview of SharePoint 2013 installation and configuration and Hardware and software requirements for SharePoint 2013 for those instructions.
In any development environment, you should use a computer with an x64-capable CPU, and at least 16 GB of RAM to install and run SharePoint 2013; 24 GB of RAM is preferable.
Depending on your specific requirements and budget, you can choose one of the following options:
Install SharePoint 2013 on Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 x64 or Windows Server 2012.
Use Microsoft Hyper-V and install SharePoint 2013 on a virtual machine running a Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 x64 or Windows Server 2012 guest operating system. See Use best practice configurations for the SharePoint 2013 virtual machines and Hyper-V environment for guidance on setting up a Microsoft Hyper-V virtual machine for SharePoint 2013.
We support installation of SharePoint 2013 only on Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 x64 or Windows Server 2012. If you want to develop apps for SharePoint for SharePoint 2013 on Windows 7 or Windows 8, you can sign up for an Office 365 Developer Site and develop apps remotely. See How to: Set up an environment for developing apps for SharePoint on Office 365 for instructions about how to create this sort of development environment.
SharePoint 2013 requires your operating system to have certain prerequisites installed before installation begins. For this reason, SharePoint 2013 includes a PrerequisiteInstaller.exe tool that installs all of the prerequisites for you. Run this tool before running the Setup.exe tool.
Run the PrerequisiteInstaller.exe tool.
Run the Setup.exe tool included with your installation files.
Accept the Microsoft Software License Terms.
On the Choose the installation you want page, choose Stand-alone.
If any errors occur in the installation, review the log file. To find the log file, open a Command Prompt window, and then type the following commands at the command prompt. A link to the log file also appears when the installation is complete.
After the installation is complete, you are prompted to start the SharePoint Products and Technologies Configuration Wizard.
The SharePoint Products and Technologies Configuration Wizard can fail if you are using a computer that is joined to a domain but that is not connected to a domain controller. If this failure occurs, connect to a domain controller either directly or through a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection, or sign in with a local account that has administrative privileges on the computer.
After the configuration wizard is complete, you see the Template Selection page of the new SharePoint 2013 site.
When you install Visual Studio 2013, you get all of the templates, tools, and assemblies to develop SharePoint 2013 on your local development machine.
See Installing Visual Studio for instructions about installing Visual Studio 2013.
Verbose logging in Visual Studio 2013
Follow these steps if you want to turn on verbose logging:
Open the registry, and navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\nn.n\SharePointTools, where nn.n is the version of Visual Studio, such as 12.0 or 14.0.
Add a DWORD key named EnableDiagnostics.
Give the key the value 1.
The registry path will change in future versions of Visual Studio.