Now available: How to: Install Visual Studio 2012 Update 2 Offline (updated version of the content below)
Visual Studio 2012 Update 1 is now available for download. You’ll find that only a web installer is provided, which means you need to be online to install it as it acquires the necessary packages for your installed product at installation time.
But don’t fret if you need to download Update 1 for ease of installation in a VM, or on a disconnected machine. The web installer for Visual Studio 2012 Update 1 (vsupdate_KB2707250.exe) has built-in functionality to create your own local copy of the full update (one size fits all – Express, Pro, Test Pro, Premium, and Ultimate).
Note This is similar to how you create a network image: How to: Create and Run an Unattended Installation of Visual Studio.
To create a local copy of Update, save the web installer locally. Then open a command prompt at that location and run the EXE with the /layout switch.
This will launch an interactive experience where you can designate the Download Location (by default, your My Documents folder).
Click Download and the installer will then acquire all of the packages and save them to the designated folder. You can even watch each category flash by on the screen as it downloads.
Once it’s complete, you get the all clear message that looks like this:
Go to the folder you designated earlier, and you can find all the files you need to install Update 1 offline:
Remember, this is the full update. It has everything for updating Visual Studio 2012 IDE products and Test Professional.
You can now burn a DVD (almost 1 GB), create an ISO for use with a VM, or copy the folder structure to a portable drive. Be sure you copy both the EXE and the Packages folder from this download location. This version of the EXE will look for the packages locally instead of online.
This process works with most of the Visual Studio 2012 web installers, too. If you choose to download a Visual Studio 2012 product, chances are you’re running a build of the web installer with the /layout switch hard coded into it.