Terje Sandstrom

------ Chief Software Geek at Inmeta Consulting in Scandinavia ----- and a Visual Studio ALM MVP

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Visual Studio

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In my work I meet many developers, tester and project managers, all using Visual Studio.  When I ask them if they have updated it to the latest version, there are many who simply don’t know.  Should you always update ? YES, you should. The Visual Studio development teams are continuously making improvements to the product.  The question also often comes when we notice that something doesn’t quite work the way it should, and we then realize it is caused by not having the latest update.  The next issue then comes – how do we find out IF the latest version is installed.  That should be trivial, but it isn't.

If you look at the Help/About in Visual Studio, it tells you if you have SP1 or just the RTM version installed. So far so good.


But to find out if you have the latest update, you need to scroll down (green arrows), and then, what you find is a series of hotfix numbers.


Only SOME of these indicates the correct cumulative updates that have been, five in all for the SP1. And, do you know what IS the latest version – I have a list published here, but still – it is hard work! 

So, enter the Version and Update Info Tool.  Install it from here:  http://visualstudiogallery.msdn.microsoft.com/bce6cbf1-fb55-4a7d-b39b-8589634d846f 

Go to the Visual Studio Help menu, next to the bottom is “Version Info”, select it and if everything is as it should be, this is what it should show:


However, if you are lagging behind in your updates, this might be what you will see then:


Or, if you have the SP1 but have missed the later updates:


The tool gives you links to the download sites, and also to information pages for the updates.  If you want information on what your current updates is, you have the name there, and if you go here, at the bottom of that post, the different updates are listed with links to information pages for them.


The principles for updating Visual Studio is to first get it up to SP1.  Then you install the latest cumulative update, which is the GRD March 2012.  I call this for the CU3, because it is a cumulative update.  It is named very strangely at the download site Visual Studio 2010 SP1 Team Foundation Server 11 Compatibility GDR , but it is the correct one.

If any new updates for VS 2010 arrives, the Version Info Tool will be updated accordingly. 

Be aware that these updates apply to the Visual Studio Client Tools, and that includes the Test Manager.

And if I get enough available time, I will add it to the top level menu or the status bar IF you are outdated.  That way you will not need to even check it, it will do that for you.  After that, automatic download and update warning would be cool – like it will be in Visual Studio 11. 

posted on Sunday, May 6, 2012 10:24 PM


# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 5/10/2012 6:40 PM Brian Keller
Nice! Thanks for building this.
Quick question - you say that when new updates come out the tool will be updated. Does that happen automatically or do users have to download a new version of the tool from Visual Studio Gallery manually?

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 5/10/2012 8:32 PM Terje
Thanks! Nice to hear it’s useful.
The tool is hardcoded, so a new one from Gallery is required, but the extension manager handles it, so – call it semi-automatic . It will be sort of the same way it will be for VS 11, which will get its updates through the extension manager.

I considered putting that information on to a webservice, but that meant another component to deploy, and a weekend just have so many hours. I would also assume that VS 2010 would be rather stable by now, so I don’t expect too many new updates.

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 5/12/2012 9:30 AM ASP.NET Hosting
Hi there,

The information of Visual Studio is remarkable, very appreciate.


# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 5/16/2012 12:12 AM Sam
why do you think this is a general "GDR" - it's not. It's very specific to accessing Team Foundation Server 11 from VS2010. There are dozens of other "patches" like this. Read the KB first to see what DLLs it patches before posting it as some type of update we actually need - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2662296

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 5/26/2012 1:41 PM Terje
Compared to CU2 you are right, but it also contains everything that is in CU2, so this is not "just a patch" for the connection to TFS 11 issue, but is also cumulative. So, if you are futher down the upgrade path than CU2, you can just as well install ONLY this, and get the TFS 11 compatibility at the same time. Also note that you need this to access the TFS online service, which is TFS 11 based.

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 6/1/2012 11:32 PM kevin
Where can I download - Visual Studio Team System 2008 Service Pack 1 Forward Compatibility Update for Team Foundation Server 2011.

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 6/1/2012 11:48 PM Terje
You can use this http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=10834, which is for TFS 2010, but will work for TFS 2011 on-premises, for now. The FCU for TFS 2012 has not been released yet.

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 9/6/2013 8:07 AM gurjar dheeraj
reaaly good

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 5/15/2014 10:24 PM Symon Michael
Excellent post! Thanks - I got my VS2010 Ultimate up-to-snuff quickly.

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 6/19/2014 4:44 PM Larry Peteet
Thanks a lot! I have checkmarks next to Major Version and Minor Update Version but it still says "You need to update, click the update links above". The only link is "Download Visual Studio 2012 here". We are on VS2010 as per Corporate Policy and so I cannot upgrade to 2012 yet.
Just wanted to mention this as your screenshots above say you are good and still show you on VS2010.

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 6/19/2014 5:33 PM Terje
Good comment! Must be something flawed in the logic there regarding post-2010 versions, but at least you have all what is needed for 2010.
I need to find a machine with 2010 installed and check this out. Could you email me a screenshot of how it looks ? To terje at hermit.no

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 7/28/2014 2:37 PM Bhavin
Thanks a lot, very helpfull post

# re: Visual Studio 2010: Version and update information tool 7/28/2014 2:38 PM Bhavin
Thanks a lot, it's a very userfull post

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