Gilad Asaf


I'm a VBA developer and I had some experience with C# (and java if it helps)

I want to check the VSTO - but I don't know who (without the studio environment)

I need to know if it is possible to develop VSTO for Excel 2003 without visual studio or other products.

I wonder if it's possible to create code in notepad, compile it somehow and make its functionality available for Excel 2003.

If the answer is yes,

1. How

2. Is it the same in Excel 2007

* If you can give me a basic buying list I'll be grateful:


1. SDK

2. .net Framework 2.0

3. Etc.


Asaf Gilad

Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office First steps in VSTO

Steven Goulet [MSFT]

Hi Asaf,

By definition VSTO is a version of Visual Studio, it stands for Visual Studio Tools for Office, so no you can't do this outside of Visual Studio.


Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office First steps in VSTO

Gilad Asaf

Thanks Steve

I've got two questions:

1. If VSTO requires VS (visual studio), then many small business will give up the idea of developing applications for office tools

(when it is free in VBA - they say OK because it cost them nothing - but time)

I know you can't answer this question for Microsoft but don't you think it ensures the future of VBA

2. What VS should I buy - I need it only for VSTO.

what is the difference between the different packages

* So I need Office, I need Visual studio...

What else I need in order to be able to be able to work with VSTO.


Asaf Gilad

Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office First steps in VSTO


Hi Asaf,

For your second question, you can purchase VSTO alone. Although, VSTO can be included in VSTS or other version of Visual Studio as a part, in fact, VSTO is also available to install by itself as a complete development environment. More information you can get from this link.

You need VSTO and Office and make sure you install the Office PIA with the Office Product.

There is also a second version of VSTO (VSTO SE) which is free for download. But this version cannot act as a dependent development environment. It must be installed as a part of VSTO or Visual Studio.

To see the features from different version of VSTO, you can refer this link.