VSTO does not support any kind of digital signature verification.
VSTO solution always just has a single assembly.
The VSTO runtime requires any assemblies to have full trust permissions to execute.

VSTO supports both local installs and network installs
Visual Studio Installer vs InstallShild LE (in Visual Studio 2010)


Office file and assembly are installed locally
Customisation assembly must be in the same directory as the office file
This directory must be fully trusted
Application manifest is embedded into the solution
No deployment manifest

In this model both the office file and the assembly are installed locally on the user's machine. This model is similar to installing using an MSI file.
Advantages are that the application can be used when offline and it can also be uninstalled or repaired from Add/Remove Programs.
Disadvantages are that the application is very difficult to update and any update must update all machines


Has a deployment manifest on the server
Security policy must either trust the server (or network location) or the assembly strong name (or both)

This is the most common. A copy of the office file is on the local machine but the assembly is on the server.
This model allows the user to make changes to the document and still be linked to the latest assembly on the server. The latest version of the assembly is automatically picked up the next time the office file is opened


Both the office file and the assembly are located on the server.
This is usually implemented with a template (.xlt or .dot). Using a template allows each user to create a new instance of the office file from a centrally located template.
After the user has created the template the user often saves a local copy,. Using SharePoint to then store these office files is a pure remote/remote model.
With this model you must explicitly trust the office file as well as the assembly.

If you run the code again while connected, VSTO checks to make sure that you have the latest version downloaded.
When you are not connected VSTO runs the cached code.

Cab Project

Much like a zip file, this compresses a number of small files into an easy-to-use (and easy to transport) package.
This option can be combined with the others.
You could create a CAB file if you have lots of small graphic files that you had to distribute with your application.

Screen shots of the View > submenu
Screen shots of the Add > submenu

Setup Wizard

This helps you create one of the many setup types

On Installation make it clear what changes/options are effective immediately and which take effect the next time you star/reopen the application.

Cleaning Before Installing

When you build your project there are some custom build tasks that are part of the project file that deploys your add-in on your development machine.
This can make it difficult to test your Setup Project because building the solution automatically installs the add-in.
One workaround it that after you build your solution you can uninstall the add-in by right clicking on the add-in project and clicking Clean. Running Clean will uninstall the add-in.

When building/running on the same PC
If you have it installed you must clean the solution before rebuilding and reinstalling

Can't install both Office 2003 and Office 2007 with Visual Studio 2008 and Visual Studio 2005
Well you can but there are just lots of problems:
1) Workbook designer does not display properly.

When your application is finished you will want to deploy it
Visual Studio applications rely on the .NET framework class libraries
Visual Studio application are compiled as "assemblies" deplymeny units consisting of one or more files necessary for the program to run.

Assemblies contain four elements:

  • Microsoft Intermediate Language Code (MSIL) code - Your program code compiled into a language that the CLR can understand.

  • Metadata - information about the types, methods and other elements defined and referenced in your code.

  • Manifest - name and version information, security and other information about the assembly

  • Supporting files and resources

Because the assemblies are co comprehensive and self-describing they do not need to be formally registered with the operating system inorder to run.
Therefore an application can be installed by simply copying the assmebly onto the computer (assuming it has the .NET framework installed).

To manage the deployment process you need to add a deployment project to your solution.

Copy Program Files to Local Profile

Copy all the important files from the program files directory to their local profile

Captivate - Adobe Video Recording ??

Deployment Project

Run the Setup Wizard to create the installation files.

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