How to: Update Existing Templates


This article applies to Visual Studio 2015. If you're looking for the latest Visual Studio documentation, see Visual Studio documentation. We recommend upgrading to the latest version of Visual Studio. Download it here

After you create a template and compress the files into a .zip file, you may want to modify the template. You can do this by manually changing the files in the template, or by exporting a new template from a project that is based on the template.

Using the Export Template Wizard to Update an Existing Template

Visual Studio provides an Export Template wizard that can be used to update an existing template.

To use Export Template to update an existing template

  1. On the File menu, click New and then click New Project.

  2. Select the template that you want to update, enter a name and location for your temporary project, and click OK.

  3. Modify the project in Visual Studio.

  4. On the File menu, click Export Template, and use the Export Template wizard to create a new template.

  5. After the updated template is compressed into a .zip file, delete the old template .zip file.

Manually Updating an Existing Template

You can update an existing template outside Visual Studio by modifying the files in the compressed .zip file.

To manually update an existing template

  1. Locate the .zip file that contains the template. By default, this file is located in \My Documents\Visual Studio Version\My Exported Templates\.

  2. Extract the .zip file.

  3. Modify or delete the current template files, or add new files to the template.

  4. Open, modify, and save the .vstemplate XML file to handle updated behavior or new files. For more information about the .vstemplate schema, see Visual Studio Template Schema Reference. For more information about what you can parameterize in the source files, see Template Parameters

  5. Select the files in your template, right-click, click Send To, and then click Compressed (zipped) Folder. The files that you selected are compressed into a .zip file.

  6. Put the new .zip file in the same directory as the old .zip file.

  7. Delete the extracted template files and the old template .zip file.

  8. Start (as administrator) an instance of the Developer Command Prompt (on the start menu, under Visual Studio 2010 / Visual Studio Tools/Developer Command Prompt).

  9. Run the following command: devenv /installvstemplates.

See Also

Customizing Templates Creating Project and Item Templates Visual Studio Template Schema Reference Template Parameters How to: Create Starter Kits