Problem: Unable to generate add-ins when migrating from older to newer versions of Visual Studio used in ArcMap


After migrating from Visual Studio 2010 to Visual Studio 2012, add-ins using the esriAddIn file extension created in the earlier version of the IDE may fail to be generated when building projects in the later version, and the following warning message displays:

<Warning Text="Unable to create .esriAddin; missing ESRI ArcGIS Add-in SDK component(s)."


This issue occurs because the path name for the .targets file of the installed Microsoft Build Engine (MSBuild) in the software development kit (SDK) for Visual Studio 2012 is structured differently than in Visual Studio 2010.

The number 11 is not included as the version number for the version being targeted in the path name of the add-in, as can be seen in the XML code of the add-in project file below:


Solution or Workaround

To resolve this issue, edit the XML tags in the project file containing the path, ESRI.ArcGIS.AddIns.targets, by following the steps below:

  1. Open the project file in Visual Studio.

  2. Change all XML tags containing the following path:

    C:\Program Files (x86)\MSBuild\Esri\ESRI.ArcGIS.AddIns.targets

    C:\Program Files (x86)\MSBuild\Esri\ESRI.ArcGIS.AddIns.11.targets

  3. Save the project file.

    The new path name contains number 11 as the version number.

  4. Reload the project.
    For the project to reflect the changes, close and reopen the project file to build the project. The warning message does not display if the add-in is generated as expected, and the project builds successfully.

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