Friday, July 8, 2016

Unattended installation of Visual Studio 2015

With the release of Visual Studio 2013, Microsoft changed the way in which you could perform Administrative/Unattended installations of Visual Studio (compared to earlier editions such as Visual Studio 2010).

Now that Visual Studio 2015 has been released and I am using it more frequently for development, I decided to revisit how to perform unattended installations with this new release of Visual Studio.

Of course, the documentation is easy to find, however, not so easy to understand:

I usually install from a downloaded ISO image, so according to the documentation, you should already have a file called AdminDeployment.xml available on the source media, but it is not available anywhere.

Instead, you still have to manually create the AdminDeployment.xml file manually using the /CreateAdminFile command-line switch.  Running this switch will not ACTUALLY install Visual Studio 2015 for you, but rather just place the default AdminDeployment.xml file on your file system.

The main problem with editing/modifying this AdminDeploment.xml file, though, is that the features that are listed in the file do not make it readily obvious which features might be dependent on each other for installation!

If you manage to figure out the correct features that you need to modify, then once you have done that, you can use this file for future unattended installations.

Another nice article for unattended installations of Visual Studio 2015 is this one ( which also describes how to perform unattended installations of Visual Studio Extensions!

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