Microsoft Visual Studio is a long-running integrated development environment (IDE). It is used all over the world to develop software, websites, mobile apps, and more. Microsoft uses a fixed lifecycle policy of 10 years, split into 5 years of mainstream support and another 5 years of extended support.
What is Microsoft Visual Studio?
First released in 1997, Microsoft Visual Studio is one of the longest-running integrated development environments for creating software, websites, mobile apps, and more. Visual Studio includes an advanced code editor featuring syntax highlighting and code completion for variables, functions, methods, and more. Additionally, it includes a debugger for debugging applications and a designer. It also includes a long list of additional modules that can be used for development, including data and server explorers to make managing databases and their connections easier.
Visual Studio Lifecycle
Currently, Visual Studio has five versions that are still supported: Visual Studio 2013, Visual Studio 2015, Visual Studio 2017, Visual Studio 2019, and Visual Studio 2022. For Visual Studio, Microsoft uses its product fixed lifecycle policy of 10 years. The first 5 years are mainstream support which provides feature updates, platform updates, security updates, and functionality fixes. This is followed by 5 years of Extended support, which includes only security updates.
In addition to the version, there are also multiple editions. While versions 2012-2017 have more than 3 editions, the primary editions for Visual Studio remain a free community edition, a professional edition, and an enterprise edition with each edition having a slightly different feature set.
Visual Studio 2012 End of Life
Visual Studio 2012 will go end of life on January 10, 2023. This applies to all editions of Visual Studio 2012 and its associated products, runtimes, and components. This means that from that moment on there will be no more supported versions of this product. Microsoft highly recommends that you upgrade to a newer version of Visual Studio as 2012 will no longer receive security updates. You can find more information about the end of support on Microsoft's blog.
Visual Studio 2019 version 16.9 End of Life
Visual Studio 2019 version 16.9 will go end-of-life on October 11, 2022. To ensure your Visual Studio installation is fully supported it is advised to update to version 16.11 or higher. Aside from being supported, version 16.11 also adds a list of new features that you can make use of, including but not limited to:
- Updated Help Menu
- Git tooling improvements
- .NET Hot Reload
- Fixed an issue with the update command
Visual Studio 2019 version 16.7 End of Life
Version 16.7 of Visual Studio 2019 went end-of-life on April 12, 2022. To ensure your Visual Studio installation is fully supported you should update to version 16.9 or higher. Aside from being supported, version 16.9 also adds a list of new features that you can make use of, including but not limited to:
- Improvements to the IDE
- A set of .NET productivity features
- Remote debugging
- Address sanitizer with C++
- Improvements to GitHub Actions Tooling
Find Outdated Visual Studio Installations
With the multitude of supported versions, it can be extremely difficult to keep tabs on when specific versions are no longer supported. To help with this, we've created a color-coded report. It shows which Visual Studio versions are end of life or will be going end of life so you can be prepared before support is stopped.