Visual Studio Installer Projects – The one thing that frustrates me a bit (other than iTunes) is how often the Visual Studio installer projects change from version to version. As of this writing there is no project template for Visual Studio 2017.
Visual Studio Installer Projects Incompatible
I was working on a project that was originally developed in Visual Studio 2015.
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It included a setup project that was now no longer available in Visual Studio 2017. It simply displayed the setup project as (incompatible).
Some might argue that I should just go back to using Visual Studio 2015. Now where is the fun in that? As it turns out, there is a solution for incompatible Visual Studio installer projects. Head on over to Tools, Extensions and Updates…
The Extensions and Updates form is displayed. Select the Online node to the left and search for Visual Studio Installer Projects. The Microsoft Visual Studio Installer Projects extension will be the first result, if you filter by Relevance. Click on the Download button.
A watch icon will display next to the extension after the download completes. You wills ee this message displayed at the bottom of the screen, Your changes will be scheduled. The selected installs, updates and uninstalls will begin when all Microsoft Visual Studio windows are closed. Close your solution and exit Visual Studio.
The installation process begins and completes in no time at all. After this, the setup project will be available when you open the solution again.
In the Add New Project window, you will also see the familiar Visual Studio Installer template under the Other Project Types templates.
Just how well the extension works with large projects remains to be seen. For now it is definitely a solution. Note that you can also download the installer from the Visual Studio Marketplace. If you are experiencing any problems, browse the Q&A section.
Error on Setup Project Build
If you receive an error when building the setup project similar to this:
Build started …
Build Failure. Error: Invalid Configuration
Parameter name: configurationName
========== Build: 0 succeeded, 0 failed, 0 up-to-date, 0 skipped ==========
Lightweight Solution Load being enabled is the problem here. As a result, you must right-click the solution in Visual Studio and click on Disable Lightweight Solution Load (second last menu item). Restart Visual Studio. This will load all the projects in the solution and you should be able to build your setup project successfully.
Keep an eye on your Output window for any additional issues.