Documentation for Agent Dependancies for .NET projects

We have, up till now, used TeamCity exclusively for Java projects.  I now need to add support for VS2005 and VS2008 projects for VB, C# and C++.  We do not have available licenses to install Visual Studios on our build agents.  It appears there are SDK and Frameworks available from Microsoft for these projects.  Is there a listing in the documentation for what we need to build VS projects on TeamCity build agents?  If the documentation does not exist, can we get it added?  As a java person I am a bit lost in the Microsoft relm...but I am also the primary administrator for TeamCity, so I need to get this resolved.

Thank you in advance for the help.


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Visual studio 2005 and 2008 uses MSBuild internally to run the builds. Projet files from VS are an msbuild scriptis.
Both .sln and .*proj (csproj, vbproj, etc) can be started with msbuild.
Please have a look to main description of msbuild at msdn:

MSbuild is included in .NET framework 2.0 (VS 2005) and .NET framework 3.5(VS 2008).

TeamCity implementation of VS005, VS2008 runners uses msbuild inside. There is no need to have VS installed on build agents.
Actually, there are several issues for that solution: you may need to start build agent service under admin account, but not LOCAL_SYSTYEM account.
Sometimes you may need to have .NET Framework SDK installed.

Please feel free asking any questions.


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We have recently installed TeamCity(2018) and are preparing our agents for .net builds.  Can you describe what is needed on the build servers to make the agents eligible to build .net core and .net framework applications?

The development teams are using Visual Studio 2017 on their desktops.

I want to avoid purchasing a Visual Studio license for the build servers if possible.

Is it sufficient to install MSBuild? 

How do I install the newest MSBuild without installing Visual Studio 2017?




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Hi Rick,


I would like to ask you first to refrain from answering to a topic that is loosely related and almost 10 years old. Your question would have been more appropriately a brand new topic, as now your message (and my answer) are sending emails to those people unnecessarily.


The MSBuild Tools can be installed separately from Visual Studio, they are available in the Microsoft website. The tools will allow you to compile the projects, but they don't include the libraries, so compilation may fail. In most situations, you will also want to install the appropriate .net SDKs, which should be also available without visual studio.


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