Visual Studio – Vanishing solution node when adding projects

A friend of mine today was quibbling a bit while using Visual Studio 2010 to create a solution and then to add projects to it. The normal behavior one would expect is as follows:

  1. Create an empty solution. One would expect to see the solution name (say MySolution) in the solution explorer. And it does show up.

image image

2. Then Right Mouse on the solution and click on Add Project, and give a project name (say MyProject1)

image image

3. One should expect to see the solution node and underneath it the project. Well this does not happen. Instead what happens is the solution node disappears and one can only see the project(My Project). Try as much you can’t get to see what you would normally expect to see the solution node also.


4. The scenario is to create a solution node (MySolution) and then add a few existing projects(MyProject1, MyProject2 and so on ) underneath it, which is normal.

5. To do this now one has to go to the File menu on the Left of the VS IDE (at the Menu bar) and then choose Add project.

image image

6. This will provide you the option to add existing projects by opening the file selection dialog box. Choose the project of interest. In the above example I just gave a new Project “MyProject2”.

7. Viola – now you will see your original MySolution solution node and then the two projects underneath it.


Enjoy the quirks of Visual Studio IDE. This exists in VS 2008 and VS 2010 versions.

Comments (14)

  1. David Kean says:

    It's actually by design. Its an option that is enabled by default when you choose VB settings at startup. You can turn it off by checking the Always show solution option in Project and Solutions options.

  2. Jerry Dixon says:

    I chose "General Settings" during startup, and saw the same behavior.  However, the option to "fix" it does exist.  Thanks, David!

  3. Dimuthu says:

    This is very important thing to know…..Thanks

  4. Karl Kiesling says:

    I found a better solution. Go to Tools -> Options -> Projects and Solutions -> General and select the always show Solution checkbox.

  5. JD says:

    Hi Karl,

    The very first comment posted 5 months back by David says it.


  6. olivia says:

    wow! <a href=>very</a&gt; interesting, thank's

  7. Tahir says:

    I chose the C# settings at start up so it is not specific to VB settings only

  8. Andy F says:

    Thank you SO very much.  I fumbled with this for quite a while.

    That said, its absurd to say "Actually, this is by design" because its crap design and actually violates Microsoft's own "standards".

    I suppose if Microsoft built airplanes, there would be no doors or windows – that way, they can ensure safety for everyone – because no one could ever get into the plane to even crash!!!  Dumb, dumb dumb!!!

    Again, many thanks for resolving Microsoft's usual brainless design.

  9. AidanC says:

    Thanks very much, wasted a while wondering why this was, and then found your post which was very well presented with the screeshots.

  10. Mac says:

    Thanks for that insight into madness..

  11. Suj says:

    Saved me from throwing my monitor out of the Window (see what I did there?).. STUPID design.

  12. Guru says:

    Thanks for giving good clarification

  13. Anisa Khandkar says:

    Thank you. My computer will live to see another day now 🙂

  14. anyte cable says:

    Anytekabel Co.,Ltd.

    Anyte Cables-Flexible Cables,Control Cable,Power Cable

    flexible cable,control cable,armoured cable,power cable,anyte cable

    Anytekabel Co.,Ltd offers an extensive range of flexible cable, control cable, Armoured Cable, Power Cable approved to International certifications,such as UL,CSA,CE,TUV,VDE,SAA.

Skip to main content