Visual Studio 2017 for Mac

Last Update: 1/9/2018

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This article contains information about the newest release of Visual Studio 2017 for Mac, version 7.3.

Use Visual Studio 2017 for Mac to build apps for mobile, web, and the cloud with Xamarin and .NET Core, as well as games with Unity.

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To learn more about Visual Studio 2017 for Mac, see Mac System Requirements and Mac Platform Targeting and Compatibility.

To learn more about other related downloads, see the Downloads page.


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Release Date: January 9, 2018 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.3 (

This release contains the following bug fix:

Release Date: December 14, 2017 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.3 (

This release contains bug fixes:


  • Installer now installs latest .NET Core SDK 2.0.3 by default.
  • Hide “Components” folder and ability to add Components for projects that do not already have a Component added.

Release Date: December 7, 2017 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.3 (

This release contains support for Xcode 9.2.

Release Date: December 4, 2017 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.3 (


Automatic iOS Signing.

This release introduces Automatic signing for iOS (and tvOS and WatchOS) to significantly simplify provisioning.

To provision an iOS device there are a number of artifacts that need to be generated:

  • Developer Signing Identity
  • App ID (with the required app services)
  • A Provisioning Profile that contains the UDID of the iOS device.

With the automatic signing feature Visual Studio for Mac will attempt to generate these artifacts for you and will modify the .csproj file to use these files for signing.

To enable automatic signing in your iOS project, open Info.plist editor, and select your development team in Signing section. If you do not have a team, ensure that you have signed in to your Apple ID via the Apple Account tool. Then, enable Enable Automatic Signing:

Automatic signing option in visual studio for mac

It's important to note that all configurations of the provisioned project will be set to use the same certificate and profile.

Visual Studio for Mac will automatically create or update certificates and profiles when any of the following events happen:

  • Automatic signing is enabled in the Info.plist editor.
  • A physical device is connected.
  • The Bundle ID in Info.plist is changed.
  • A supported capability in Entitlements.plist is selected. Note that not all entitlements trigger Automatic signing in this release. The following entitlements are currently supported:

    • HealthKit
    • HomeKit
    • Personal VPN
    • Wireless Accessory Configuration
    • Inter-App Audio
    • SiriKit
    • Hotspot
    • Network Extensions
    • Multipath

    Support for other entitlements will be added in future releases.

Team and Developer identity preferences are saved to .userprefs so they can be excluded from source control.

iOS Designer

Visual Studio 7.3 introduced a number of new improvements to the iOS Designer:

  • New Bottom Toolbar

    bottom toolbar for iOS designer

    The Size Class, View As, orientation, and zoom controls that were previously in the document toolbar have been removed. This functionality has been moved to a new toolbar that has been added at the bottom of the document area.

    • The zoom controls are now at the right of the bottom toolbar and behave as they did previously.
      • The current view is displayed on the left of the bottom toolbar. Click this to expand the new Size Class / View As bar:
        • When expanded, the bar displays all devices, orientations, and/or adaptations applicable to the current document. Click on these to change the view on the design surface.
        • When size classes are enabled, a button appears at the right side of the expanded bar. Click this button to create a variation based on the currently selected device, orientation, and/or adaptation.
  • Constraints Mode

    New constraints toolbar for iOS designer

    The Add and Remove Constraints buttons on the document toolbar have been removed and a new Constraints Mode toggle has been introduced.

    • Previously, you entered constraints mode by clicking again on a selected view on the design surface. That mechanism has been replaced by the new toggle switch on the top document toolbar.
    • The Update Frames from Constraints button in the top document toolbar now becomes Update Constraints from Frames when in constraints mode.
  • Safe Area Layout Guide

    The Safe Area Layout Guide, introduced in iOS 11, is now supported.

    • Safe Area Layout Guides can be enabled under document properties (visible when you click on the design surface outside of any view controller).
    • When Safe Area Layout Guides are enabled, existing constraints to the top or bottom layout guides are converted into constraints against the safe area.
    • If Safe Area Layout Guides are disabled, existing constraints against the safe area are converted into constraints against the top or bottom layout guides.
  • Xcode Support

    • Xcode 9.1 is fully supported.
    • The minimum supported version is now Xcode 8.0.


  • New Asset Catalog type: ColorSet.

    • Xcode9 / iOS 11 supported introduced ColorSet assets, which allows users to define custom colors for use in their applications. This release of Visual Studio for Mac now supports this feature.


  • Improved deployment errors. When the user tries to run an Android project with no launchable activity in Release mode the IDE now catches this and gives the user a more informative error message.

  • Run Configuration hints. The Run Configuration editor now provides hints about how to properly export an Activity, Service, or Broadcast Receiver.

  • Integration of SDK Manager in the updater. The Visual Studio for Mac Updater can resolve, download, and install Android SDK dependencies automatically. If a Xamarin.Android update depends on a specific Android SDK level to be installed, the required SDK package will be shown in the list with available updates and downloaded automatically. After the successful Xamarin.Android installation, the updater app will install the previously downloaded package at the default Android SDK location.

Android Designer

  • Faster rendering on Visual Studio
  • Reliability improvements for Visual Studio
  • Improved scrolling experience for ScrollView widgets

Xamarin Live Player (Preview)

  • Updated to include support for SDK style projects.

  • Updated to include support for Android emulators and iOS simulators. You can now use Live Run to visualize your Forms views without the need to pair a device or to build your app.

  • Better status reporting and error messages when deploying.

  • Deployment status when deploying for "Live Run Current View".

  • Live Run now also has a shortcut (Shift+Opt+L).

The Player app has also been updated with many improvements and bug fixes. Be sure to get the latest builds from the respective app stores.


  • New Roslyn based refactorings.

    Generate From Usage, Change Method Signature, and Extract Interface are now offered as refactorings within your C# code.


  • VSTest integration.

    Visual Studio for Mac now supports a wider variety of test frameworks through the integration of VSTest. Frameworks such as MSTest or xUnit can now be used within Visual Studio for Mac via NuGet adpater packages (MSTest.TestAdapter, xunit.runner.visualstudio for example).

  • Upated authentication.

    Improvements to the Visual Studio authentication integration should solve many of the issues users have had signing in with their Visual Studio accounts and fetching licensing information.

  • Accessibility.

    We have been continually updating and improving accessibility.

  • Updater support for .NET Core.

    Visual Studio for Mac will now check to see if the .NET Core 2.0 SDK is installed when checking for updates. If it is not installed then the Visual Studio Update dialog will allow it to be downloaded and installed.

Top Issues Fixed in this Release

Known Issues

  • Docker can interfere with launching Android emulators that use HAXM. When debugging Android apps on emulators, please shutdown Docker before attempting to debug.

  • Creating a blank Xamarin.Forms in F# may cause the IDE to crash when you try to build the application. To workaround this issue, add the Xamarin.Forms package to the project manually.

Visual Studio 2017 for Mac Release Notes History

Visual Studio 2017 for Mac version 7.2 Release Notes

Visual Studio 2017 for Mac version 7.1 Release Notes

Visual Studio 2017 for Mac version 7.0 Release Notes

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