Smells like VSIP…

Smells like VSIP


For a change of pace, I thought I would spend a little time talking about the VSIP Program and opportunities all the VS extenders out there might be interested in.


VSIP stands for Visual Studio Industry Partner. It’s a program that was started about 6 years ago for commercial ISVs that wanted to have both a business and technical relationship with Microsoft around integration into Visual Studio. It has over 280 members from around the world that integrate some 10,000 extensions (languages, editors, project systems, designers, tool windows, controls etc..) into the Visual Studio product we all know and love. It has three subscription levels: Affiliate (free), Alliance ($3000 membership fee per year), and Premier ($10000 membership fee per year). The Premier membership has both marketing and technical sub-programs that can be used together or independently.


Why would you want to become a member?

The reasoning is actually quite simple: To build a deeper relationship with Microsoft and ensure commercial success by leveraging rich marketing and technical benefits through a great partner program. 


Which level is right for you?

Here’s a quick breakdown of what’s offered at each level:


Affiliate MembershipThis level is a complimentary membership for institutions, researchers, ISVs, SIs, shareware developers and corporations. It gives you access to the Visual Studio Extensibility technologies. Benefits include the VS SDK, documentation, community support and promotion through the VSIP Online Product Catalog.

Alliance Membership
This level gives you a technical and marketing relationship with Microsoft. The Alliance level is for tools ISVs, component ISVs, and other ISVs building development tools or application customization tools, in addition to SIs marketing customized methodology templates and shareware developers who want general marketing support. Benefits include technical resources for developing products (a one year MSDN subscription and support incidents, and the ability to attend periodic Microsoft-hosted developer labs- my favorite time of year J), as well as a suite of basic co-marketing opportunities (MSDN Flash, INETA user group kits, case studies etc..)

Premier Marketing MembershipThis membership is for enterprise ISVs and SIs interested in a closer technical, business, and marketing relationship with Microsoft, including opportunities to engage with Microsoft technical evangelists. Benefits include featured partner placement on MSDN, internal sales portal placements and opportunities to participate in MSDN-hosted Webcasts.


Premier Partner MembershipThe Premier Partner membership is ideal if your company is an enterprise ISV or SI, and you want to integrate your applications with and redistribute Visual Studio 2005 or the Visual Studio 2005 Premier Partner Edition. Benefits include the ability to redistribute Visual Studio itself, providing your customers a one-stop purchasing and installation experience.

The point is that while the Visual Studio SDK enables the technologies you use to build great products, VSIP is the vehicle to take those products into the next level, and into a commercial arena. For more information about VSIP and what it can do for you check out: