Loading Projects in Visual Studio not Located on Local Machine

The new boot from vhd feature that shipped in Windows 7 and Server 2008 has now given developers new options for setting up a test systems with different versions of Visual Studio.

For the purpose of this post, local system is the vhd boot volume and host system is the operating system and its drives that the vhd is physically located on.

Some developers are booting into their vhd, then accessing source projects that are actually located on the host system or are trying to load projects located on the network.

We recommend that projects be located on the local system.  However, if your scenario requires that you load projects not located on the local system, the following steps can be taken to enable this scenario.

Network Share

If you must use a project on a network share, map the network share to a local drive rather than trying to use UNC path similar to the below example. 

Example:   Map \\systemName\pathName to e:\shareName.


The loadFromRemoteSources option is available to enable assemblies being loaded from remote sources to be loaded as full trust. 

Please ensure that you read the MSDN loadFromRemoteSources topic and are fully aware of the implications of using this setting.  The MSDN topic has instructions for enabling this setting.

If you have Visual Studio 2010 installed on a vhd, and your source projects are located on the host system or network drive, you’ll need to use the loadFromRemoteSources setting to enable this scenario.


Microsoft values your opinion about our products and documentation. In addition to your general feedback it is very helpful to understand:

  • How the above features enable your workflow
  • What is missing from the above feature that would be helpful to you

Thank you for your feedback and have a great day,

Karl Shifflett
Visual Studio Cider Team

Comments (2)

  1. Charlie says:

    This is contradicting. If I want IIS to load from a network share, I must NOT use a mapped drive.

    Getting IIS7 to load a website from a network share:


    IMHO, I should be able to do whatever I want on my LAN. I'm at home, behind a firewall. There are no hackers hanging around in my apartment trying to hijack my pc. I should be able to treat my network drive/share as local. That doesn't seem to be the case.

  2. karl140.6 says:


    Yes, you are correct.with respect to IIS, thank you for point this out.  The above applies to loading WPF projects.  

    IIS has very good security built-in security which is why I typically deploy to a web site rather than open a solution located on a web site.  But understand your motivation for wanting your scenario to be enabled.



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