International Projects in Visual Studio

Visual Studio supports saving files, projects, and solutions in Unicode formats. If you choose to save in a Unicode format, you should be aware of the following issues:

Deployment Projects

Deployment Projects do not support Unicode file or project names. All project names are converted to the codepage specified in the deployment project. For more information, see How to: Create or Add Deployment Projects.


Visual Studio requires that you install on a system in which the system default locale matches or contains the UI Language of Visual Studio.

The following scenarios are supported:

Visual Studio Language

OS Language


Any Language OS

Chinese (Simplified)

Chinese (Simplified)

Chinese (Traditional)

Chinese (Traditional)


Western European Languages


Western European Languages


Western European Languages






Western European Languages

Unicode File Names

If your file contains Unicode data, you might receive a warning to save in a Unicode file format. If Visual Studio is unable to detect the Unicode data in the file, the warning does not appear. If you save the file in a Unicode format, you do not lose data otherwise you can lose data as the character might be transformed to the best possible fit.

Visual C++

Visual C++ only supports ANSI or MBCS file formats. It does not support non-ASCII characters in project or filenames. (Reference C++ documentation).

Visual SourceSafe

Visual SourceSafe does not support Unicode formats. If you save a file and / or project as Unicode, you should only check files in as binary format. Visual SourceSafe does not support Unicode or UTF-8 text files.

Web Application Projects

Web Application Projects can be saved with Unicode project names, and UTF-8 URLs are supported in Internet Information Services 6.0 and later. In Internet Information Services 5.0 and earlier, the characters in the project name must be contained in the codepage of server to which you deploy.

See Also


How to: Manage Files By Using Encoding


Advanced Save Options Dialog Box

Other Resources

Editing Text, Code, and Markup

Globalizing and Localizing Applications

Encoding Dialog Box