Last year, when version 10 was still beta, I contacted ESRI to recommend a migration path for VBA conversion. I was reassured that the free VS Express will be sufficient.

Now in version 10 and with all VBA customization at "document level" since UI Controls cannot be added to the "Normal.mxt" template created a significant problem with supporting / upgrading VBA customizations.

Seems that I finally need to migrate the tools so i set out to complete the Walkthrough example only to find that I don't seem to be able to complete it.

The Walktrhough is obviously customized for those with full version of VS. I have a very limited knowledge of .Net and so i thought the Add-ins should be simple enough migration path.

Is it even possible to create an Add-in with VS Express? Does anyone know of a good example using VS Express rather than the full version.

2 Answers 2


OK, I just read Simon's answer on your other question and you've already done this.

You might want to be more specific as to why you can't complete the walkthrough example. According to the ESRI Forums, there are some people on ArcGIS 10 + VS 2008 Express and it's not without integration issues: ESRI Forum. Maybe you have an integration issue and that is preventing you from completing the walk through?

I think this answers the question, but there's no example. Hopefully another answerer will have one for you.

See the first sentence under Building Add-ins: http://blogs.esri.com/Dev/blogs/arcgisdesktop/archive/2010/05/05/Add_2D00_ins-for-ArcGIS-Desktop-10.aspx

Add-ins are built using an integrated development environment (IDE), such as Visual Studio Express for .NET and Eclipse for Java, and simple wizards and templates are provided with the ArcObjects SDKs to automatically generate fully stubbed out add-in projects including the XML and class files.

  • Thanks Jay. My fist stumbling block was the Snippet Finder which I was able to make work (sort of) with Simon's help. It lacks the search functionality but oh well... My problem now is the absence of the ArcMap add-in static class which is suppose to be automatically generated but it's not. Quoting: "The ArcGIS Add-Ins Wizard creates static classes depending on the customizations in your add-in in the config.designer.cs file." So i am wondering if anyone has even been able to build an add-in in the Express edition. I wonder how many other problems will I encounter... Oct 26, 2010 at 18:25
  • This might not help, but maybe it will help you rule something out: dl.dropbox.com/u/1156285/ArcMapAddinTemplate.zip This AddIn project builds in both VS2010 and SharpDevelop 3.2. I would think it should also build in VSExpress. Oct 26, 2010 at 18:53

It is possible. It's probably even easy for those fluent in .Net development. It proved a little challenging for me to follow the only currently available example: http://help.arcgis.com/en/sdk/10.0/arcobjects_net/conceptualhelp/index.html#/Building_add_ins_for_ArcGIS_Desktop/0001000000w2000000/

The example assumes VS Standard / Pro, not even the sample code works as presented when using Express edition but in the end I was able to compile and install the add-in.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.