Frequently Asked Questions

Visual Studio 2015 Only - Unable to create or open Arduino projects

Visual Studio requires C++ to be installed

Visual Studio 2015 Only - Unable to install extension

Visual Studio Installer (VSIX) fails if user's temp path contains an accented char or spaces

Microsoft are working on a solution to this problem. You can workaround it by creating and giving full permission to a folder with a name encoded as described in this article

A simple example of the folder name for "Fred Flintstone" would be "\Users\Fred%20Flinstone\AppData\Local\Temp"

Visual Studio 2012 and 2013 - Upgrading From Older Visual Micro Versions

Visual Studio 2012 and 2013 - Upgrading from older versions of Visual Micro (ver 1508.30+) ?

Visual Micro has been changed to a Visual Studio 'Extension' which is cleaner, more robust and has less installer issues

The older Add-in version of Visual Micro should be uninstalled using "Control Panel>Add Or Remove programs"

The new version also includes a menu item called "Help>Cleanup Old Version" which can be used to remove any remaining menu or tool bar commands from the older version.

Older tool bars can also be delete manually by right click "Tool Strip>Customize"

It's good to know that Visual Studio Extensions don't suffer from these untidy issues. Bye bye VS Add-ins!!

Visual Studio 2010 and Atmel Studio 6.2 - Visual Micro Does Not Appear After Install

I have installed Visual Micro without any error, but nothing changed in Visual Studio/Atmel Studio, what's wrong?

  • Please identify the folder where Visual Micro was installed, normally "C:\Program Files (x86)\Visual Micro\Visual Micro for Arduino"
  • Start your IDE (Visual Studio or Atmel Studio) and go to Tools > Options > Environment > Add-In Security
  • Click on "Add" and add the installation folder you have identified above
  • Make sure "Allow Add-In components to load" is checked
  • Restart your IDE
  • Visual Micro should now be active

Missing Toolbars and menu options such as "File>New>Sketch Project"?

Click the "Tools>Visual Micro>Reset User Interface" menu. Doing so will re-start the Ide and repair the Visual Micro user interface controls.

All Visual Studio and Atmel Versions - Installation & Build

Code syntax colors and intellisense not working in .ino and .pde source code

You can configure this manually by following this guide

Special note for Arduino Ide versions 1.6.0 and 1.6.1

For these two versions please configure the Arduino 1.5 application option in Visual Micro and NOT the Arduino 1.6 option

How to install Arduino DUE and Arduino ZERO

Use the Arduino Board Manager to easily download and install new tool chains

Does the Visual Micro installer alter any core Visual Studio or Atmel Studio files?

No, Visual Micro does not alter any of the ide program files. Visual Micro only installs its own files under the program files folder. It also adds a few new project templates which are usually located in 'mydocuments/vs_ver/project templates'

Does the Visual Micro installer alter any core Arduino Ide program files?

No, Visual Micro does not alter any of the Ide program files. The Arduino Ide is unchanged and is not used by Visual Micro except to confirm the Arduino Ide is installed and to read the 'configuration files/hardware' source codes

Does editing my programs with Visual Micro alter any of my core or library sources? Can I still program my code with the Arduino Ide after using Visual Micro?

Visual Micro does not change any source code! The code remains the way it was authored and will work as designed in either Visual Micro or the Arduino Ide

How can I find the version of Visual Micro that is currently installed?

The current version can be found by looking at Tools>Options>Visual Micro>Version. The Service Pack level is also shown below the version number.

Can Visual Studio and Atmel Studio be installed on the same computer?

Yes, all versions of Visual Studio and Atmel Studio can coexist on the same computer without causing any issues.

I have deleted files from my project, but they are still used in compilation

If you have removed a file from your project by pressing [Del] in the Solution Explorer, you had the choice to remove it from the project or to delete it from your hard drive. If you choose only to remove it, it will still be part of the compilation.

Open Windows explorer and delete the file. If you want to keep it but exclude it from the compilation, simply rename the file extension, e.g. from "myfile.cpp" to "myfile.__cpp"

After making changes to my project, I get strange compiler errors or my sketch will not run correctly anymore, but I can’t find any mistakes in my code. What shall I do?


I have manually changed various library and/or core source codes and need to ensure a clean compilation

Sometimes, in advanced projects, changes to #defines or changes to library code require a clean build. This page describes how to perform a clean build.

When I try to create a new sketch or add an existing sketch, I get the message
"Unable to create an Arduino project for Atmel Studio"

This can occur when using Atmel Studio 6.2.
In this case, uninstall Visual Micro and reinstall it as an administrator by right clicking on Visual Micro's installer file and choose "Run as administrator".

When trying to build my sketch, I get the error message "'xxxx' was not declared in this scope", although xxxx is declared correctly

This problem may occur if two conditions are met:
1. You have used a C++ typedef as a parameter for a function definition
2. Your function is in an .INO file

1. Change this file into a .CPP file.
2. Avoid using typedefs as function parameters.
3. Switch off automatic generation of function prototypes (see here). Then your .INO files behave like .CPP files

I have problems with foreign characters like "ä" and "Д", and the original Arduino IDE handled them differently.

If you have such characters in your code, then you will notice that they will all be translated into the same three byte code 0xef 0xbf 0xbd in your compiled program.
This article explains how to repair this and gives you general advice about handling Non-ASCII characters.

I have renamed one of my .INO files and now the sketch does not compile anymore

This may come from the way how Visual Micro combines all .INO files into one big INO file.


I see duplicate toolbars or duplicate toolbar icons (Visual Studio 2010 and Atmel Studio 6.x only)

Some versions of Visual Studio/Atmel Studio have bugs in this area.
You can simply fix this with the Tools > Visual Micro > Reset User Interface menu command.

Visual Micro modifies the text formatting of my code and don't like the result

Visual Micro itself does not modify your formatting, it's your IDE, either Visual Studio and Atmel Studio, which does this.

Both IDEs have integrated formatting functions, which you can configure:

  • For Visual Studio: Choose the Tools > Options... menu command,
    then go to the Text Editor > C/C++ > Formatting section.
  • For Atmel Studio: Choose the VAssistX > Visual Assist Options... menu command,
    then go to the Corrections section.


I have enabled debugging but it does not work

Please keep in mind that the debugging system uses the serial port and expects a baud rate as set in Visual Micro. If your sketch code uses the serial port as well, then you must use the same baud rate as Visual Micro (in your Serial.begin() function call) or adjust Visual Micro's baud rate to yours.

Visual Micro's default baud rate is 115.200, you can change the baud rate in the Project Properties (Local Speed and Remote Speed settings).

As an alternative, you can use separate serial ports for debugging and other communications (Read more)

Can I use the debugger to debug interrupt service routines (ISRs)?

yes, at least for certain ISRs this is possible. To make the debugger usable with ISRs, switch off the "throttle" function in the project properties.

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