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Microsoft® Visual Studio® 2010 Unleashed by Lars Powers, Mike Snell

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Packaging Your Creation for Wider Distribution

There are three primary ways you can package your content for distribution: VSIX, MSI, and VSI. Each of these has their place depending on your needs. The following describes each option:

VSIX—The Visual Studio Extension file format (.vsix) is used for creating content that you intend to publish to the Visual Studio Gallery. The VSIX items are then installed and managed via the Visual Studio Extension Manager (Tool, Extension Manager). The VSIX projects are also available in the Online Templates in the New Project Dialog.

VSIX can package project and item templates, toolbox controls, and more. You cannot, however, use VSIX to deploy macros, add-ins, and code snippets (you would use VSI for that). ...

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