# Unity Visual Studio 2012 Express won't support Win32 Projects

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If you followed Microsoft's recent plans or tried Windows 8 + Visual Studio 2012 yourself, you might have noticed already:

Starting with Visual Studio 2012, Microsoft will no longer offer a free C++ compiler for traditional application development. The Express editions will build Metro applications only.

Visual Studio 2012 is pretty interesting because it includes C++11 thread support - something which I've been waiting for very much since it finally resolves the situation of having to decide between Boost.Threads, TBB or POCO for portable threading. Now Microsoft has put me in a situation where I either have to shell out $500 to get the Professional edition or drop Windows 7 and Windows XP from my target group. Dropping Windows 7 is out of the question, as I have no doubt that many people will not be switching to Windows 8 any time soon. What will you do?$500 for the Professional edition may be a reasonable price, but it's also a significant hurdle to collaborating with the Open Source community. Staying with Visual C++ 2010 Express means little to no C++11 features. That leaves Eclipse CDT + MingW and Code::Blocks + MingW which I'm currently checking out.

Opinions?

I'm not sure anyone can sway Microsoft's from their current path, but I've opened a ticket on Microsoft Connect that you can vote on: Support C++ Desktop Applications in Visual Studio 2012 Express

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There was a thread on this exact issue in the lounge a couple of days ago:
http://www.gamedev.net/topic/625210-visual-studio-11-express/

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Outch, I missed that. Thanks for the warning.

Let me formulate my question a bit tighter: What are you going to do about Visual Studio 2012? Buy? Stay with 2010? Switch to MinGW?

Personally, I find Metro interesting, so I want my homebrew games to run on Metro, too. So I will be using Visual Studio 2012 Express for that. But dropping support for Windows 7 is out of the question, so I have to decide what to use as my main development environment. I'm currently undecided between staying with Visual C++ 2010 Express and using Boost.Threads (so no C++11 for me) or switching to MingW (which means getting used to a whole new IDE, but also brings me a bit closer to targeting Android, I believe). Edited by Cygon

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Unless they radically change what they ship in the release version of Express vs the RC that's currently downloadable, enabling the IDE to build non-metro native projects is very simple.. Edited by adeyblue

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I'm a student, so if the past is any predictor of the future, I'll be using the 2012 Ultimate/Team edition for free. So personally, I'm not to worried about it.

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I'd be surprised if VS 2010 didn't receive an update to allow for new C++11 functionality. Edited by Alpha_ProgDes

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Unless they radically change what they ship in the release version of Express vs the RC that's currently downloadable, enabling the IDE to build non-metro native projects is very simple..

A-ha! Thank you for this little gem

If Visual C++ 2005 Express is any indication (you could compile to x64 by tricking the IDE, but in Visual C++ 2008 Express they blocked that hack completely) that means we're good for at least another 2-3 years. Edited by Cygon

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Umm... Visual C++ 2008 Express CAN compile to x64. I used it to compile the Maya plugin in my signature. I don't remember the procedure thought, but it was painless enough to be forgettable.

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Maybe I'm mixing something up here. I remember it being a hack at one time, then becoming impossible from within the IDE, then turning into a feature that's officially supported.

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As long as VS 2010 is supported (and it is) and we can still use engines such as XNA (which you can for now), I won't bother with VS 2012 unless I want to design Metro apps.

Honestly I'm learning Java anyway instead of XNA since it might not survive.

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