VSX Arcana

Covering the many topics of Visual Studio Extensibility

Welcome to the VSX Arcana Blog

The goal of this blog is to highlight various topics and issues pertaining to extending the Visual Studio IDE, primarily through the use of the Visual Studio SDK.

For this first post, we’ll list the various downloads, resources and support avenues that are at your disposal for issues pertaining to extending or customizing the Visual Studio.

Visual Studio SDK Download links:

Redistributable Visual Studio Shell Download links:

Resource links:


The MSDN Visual Studio Extensibility Forum is  a great place to solicit advice, feedback, suggestions and questions pertaining to VS Extensibility. The forum is frequented by Microsoft Support Staff, Visual Studio Team Members, Microsoft MVP’s and others, that have expertise and experience with extending Visual Studio.

Microsoft also maintains a dedicated support team tasked specifically to assist customers with questions or problems pertaining VS Extensibility. To engage the support staff, a paid support incident must be submitted through Microsoft Support Services. Note, some versions of Visual Studio may include a number of free support incidents. See http://msdn.microsoft.com/oas for the details.

MSDN Subscriptions may also include a number of complimentary support incidents. See http://msdn.microsoft.com/subscriptions.b266240.aspx for the details.

Visual Studio Industry Partner (VSIP) membership includes a complimentary MSDN Premium subscription would includes a number of free support incidents. Additionally, VSIP members are also eligible to attend periodic Developer Clinics. See http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/vstudio/dd637761 for the details.

Paid support incidents can also be purchased through a variety of support offerings available under the “Developer Tools” category on the following site: http://support.microsoft.com/select/?target=assistance.

Support Caveat:

Please note, standard support incidents cannot be used for advisory or consulting services. Issues involving a deep level of integration via the Visual Studio SDK can be very complex. Customers that require advisory or consulting services should consider purchasing a Premier Support contract, or alternatively Microsoft Professional Advisory Service hours.