VDPROJ in Visual Studio 2012

Seems a lot of backwards steps being taken by MS as they progress “forward” (see: Windows 8, Metro, Silverlight, etc).  In the world of .Net development, a recent one to bite me was the fact that .Net 4.5 is not supported on windows xp.


But a strange one this is- Visual Studio 2012 no longer support the VDPROJ project type- this is the delployment project type often used for winforms or wpf apps. I’ve tried using clickonce and it works… 80%… which means it is 20% completely unuseable.

The VDPROJ project type was nothing great, more frustrating than useful. But it was the best thing around for throwing together a quickie installer to get out the door. If I recall, the MSI format it used is getting phased out as well (another Win8 victim if memory serves), so it makes some sense that they would no longer support it.

The odd part though is that no good or improved replacement was brought in. MS recommends using a light version of installshield. Ok sure, now we’re being forced back into a third party solution.

MS does also recommend using WiX, an XML based deployment build toolset… at least I think that’s what it is. It has no built-in support in VS2012, and apparently I’m now supposed to become an expert at manually editing XML files to make a deployment project. Huh??

So, great, my quickie update to an old project today has turned into an exercise in figuring out some new deployment technology and fiddle with it all afternoon to try to get back to the point my vdproj already had me at years ago. Thanks MS…