Building an Office COM Add-in Using Visual Studio .NET
page 1 of 4
Published: 09 Nov 2006
In this step-by-step article Sumit discusses and describes how to build an Office COM add-in by using Microsoft Visual Studio .NET 2003.
by Sumit Dhal
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Microsoft Office 2000 and later support new, uniform design architecture for building application add-ins to enhance and to control Office applications.  These add-ins are called COM add-ins.

In this step-by-step article we will discusses Office COM add-ins and describes how to build an Office COM add-in by using Microsoft Visual Studio .NET.

In this article we will also discuss the five methods provided by the IDTExtensibility2 interface.  All COM add-ins inherit from this interface and must implement each of its five methods.

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User Comments

Title: Re: Testing, installing and uninstalling   
Name: Sumit
Date: 2008-12-13 12:37:47 PM
Hello Bart,

To start Outlook/ any office app instead:
In the Project Properties - Debug - Start Action, choose Start External program and locate to your Office Installation Folder - Outlook exe.

The add in application must have created the associated installer(setup) project. Build this to create the msi file to be installed. Right click on the installer project in VS will directly give you install/ uninstall option. Note: Build the setup project appropiately before install to get the installer with latest code change.

You can also change the project output path of the addin application to point to your installation folder, from bin(default) to get the immediate output to take effect in the plugin.

Hope all this will help.

Title: Testing, installing and uninstalling   
Name: Bart
Date: 2008-12-11 1:24:41 PM

How can you test this add-in? If I run it, another session of the Visual Studio starts. Why?

How can we install and uninstall this add-in?

Title: Replying Garg   
Name: saranya
Date: 2008-05-23 4:02:24 AM
Can we see design view of the addins created
Title: Replying Garg   
Name: Sumit (Author)
Date: 2007-07-04 2:19:08 AM
Hi Garg,

Please check the reference of the microsoft article ( in the reference section of my article.
I tried to make it more presentable, removing complecated stuffs, to encourage new developers to jump into this area.

I am working on Outlook com add-ins for about last two years. I will try to add few more useful stuffs in future article if I plan to. You can find few of my posts at of Sue Mosher, that is the best site if one person is intrested in outlook COM programming.

- sumit
Title: This is just a copy of article from microsoft   
Name: GARG
Date: 2007-07-03 3:21:26 PM
Please add some value to the tutorial. This is a copy of article from microsoft.
Title: To access a menuitem in Microsoft Office Infopath form   
Name: akjal
Date: 2007-03-14 11:00:43 AM
Hi Sumith,
Thanks for such a simple and informative narration.

I have a requirement. In a Microsoft Infopath form , I need to access a MenuItem and click it through visual studio code.Could you pls suggest any solution.Could add-in work in this scenario?

Thanks in advance...
Title: For Prashant Malik   
Name: Sumit Kumer Dhal
Date: 2007-02-10 6:51:24 AM
Hi Prashant,

It is easily doable.
But please let me know your requirement clearely. My mail id is
drop me a mail (or to know your id) as I have no other way to reach you.

Title: office add in to write into the word document   
Name: prashant malik
Date: 2007-02-10 5:49:37 AM
You have done a great job!!!

Now can you create or modify the existing add in to write something inside the word document. My requirement is like this..
add a text box instead of button and when a user write something inside
the text box it should display inside the word document(editor)

thanks in advance
Title: visual studio .net 2003 codeing books   
Name: saeed hussian
Date: 2006-11-30 10:13:30 AM
pls send the books in visual basic 6 and visual studio .net 2003

Title: Informative one   
Name: sarit
Date: 2006-11-13 1:01:46 AM
Let this flow going on.

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