How To: Download the package that includes the Microsoft Visual Studio Shell 12.0 libraries


In ArcObjects, creating an add-in with Microsoft Visual Studio requires running the ValidateAddInXMLTask. This task requires Visual Studio Shell 12.0 to run with the necessary packages installed and without interruption, otherwise errors may be returned.


Because the Microsoft Visual Studio Shell 12.0 library is a part of Visual Studio 2013 Shell (an older version of the software), the download link is not located on the main Visual Studio Downloads page. The following steps describe how to locate and download Visual Studio 2013 Shell.

  1. In a web browser, navigate to the web page, Microsoft: Visual Studio Downloads.
  2. Click the link to join the free Dev Essentials program.

    The image of Microsoft download page.
  3. Click Join or access now.

    The image of access button.
  4. Sign in or Create a new account.
    Registration for new accounts is free.
  5. Click Downloads.

    Image of the Download link.
  6. Search for Visual Studio 2013 Shell, and download the desired file.

    Image of search result downloads.
  7. Rename the download file to the original filename so that the installer runs without compatibility issues. The original filename can be found by right-clicking the installer file > Details.

    The image of the Original filename.

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