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I finally took time and figure out how to keep Visual Studio settings in sync across different machines (work, laptop, home, virtual,…) as I really grew tired of importing color schemes and fixing mixed up shortcut keys. Bonus is, you get easy backup of your most important settings which you will love next time you reinstall your machine!

Actually this is really simple task. What you’ll need is some kind of syncing program, I currently run DropBox, but I believe Live Sync would also work. Same procedure works for Visual Studio 2008 and 2010. Might also work with previous version, but I don’t have them installed, so I can’t check.

First, export your settings into a file. I choose to sync only color and font setting and keyboard settings.


Documentation says you should put this file on UNC share and use it from different computers. But nothing is stopping you from syncing it over the internet! Save exported settings file in a folder you will sync across computers, so in my case this is somewhere under “My Dropbox”.

Then, in Visual Studio use “Team Settings” feature in Options / Environment / Import and Export Settings.


What is does is, every time you lunch Visual Studio, it’ll check timestamp of .vssettings file and if it is updates, it will apply settings from that file! Done!

Just remember: If you change and of your synced settings on any machine and you would like to use those changes across all computers, you should manually export settings again!


Another tip… Use different file for different Visual Studio versions. I run 2008 and 2010, so I have SharedSettings and SharedSettings_2008 files synced.

Posted on Monday, August 23, 2010 9:12 AM | Filed under: Software Developement |


# re: Syncing Visual Studio settings 8/27/2010 10:23 PM John Meyer
Yes, this does work using Live Sync. I have my "My Documents\Visual Studio 2008" folder syncing from both my home and work PCs (well, until I changed jobs and would up behind a proxy that blocks it). Only weirdness I noticed was that when it picked up the changes from the other computer (one was Pro one was Ultimate--er Team Suite), I'd get the annoying preparing for first use message for a few seconds, but the syncing worked. Can't confirm the behavior of VS2010 as I didn't have it at the old place.

# re: Syncing Visual Studio settings 8/30/2010 12:58 PM Brunswick
For me it didn't work using Live Sync.

# re: Syncing Visual Studio settings 9/15/2010 10:54 AM Jade
Cool it works using Live Sync!

# re: Syncing Visual Studio settings 7/26/2011 6:53 PM Flash Games
but the syncing worked. Can't

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