Localizing VSIX Packages

You can localize a VSIX package by creating an Extension.vsixlangpack file for each target language and then putting them in the correct folder. When a localized package is installed, the localized name of the extension is displayed together with a localized description. If you supply a localized license file, or a URL that points to localized information, they are also displayed.

If the content your VSIX package includes a VSPackage that adds menu commands or other UI, see Localize menu commands for information about localizing the new UI elements.

Directory structure

When a user installs an extension, Extensions and Updates checks the top level of the VSIX package for a folder whose name matches the Visual Studio locale of the target computer. If Extensions and Updates finds a .vsixlangpack file in the folder, it substitutes the localized values in that file for the corresponding values in the .vsixmanifest file. These values are displayed when the extension is being installed. The following example shows the directory structure for a VSIX package that is localized into Spanish (es-ES) and French (fr-FR).

├── MyExtension.dll
├── Extension.vsixmanifest
├── [Content_Types].xml
├── es-ES
│   └── Extension.vsixlangpack
└── fr-FR
    └── Extension.vsixlangpack


The VSIX-supported project templates in the Visual Studio SDK generate a VSIX manifest and name it source.extension.vsixmanifest. When Visual Studio builds the project, it copies the content of that file into Extension.VsixManifest in the VSIX package.

The Extension.vsixlangpack file

The Extension.vsixlangpack file follows the VSIX Language Pack schema 2.0. This schema has a PackageLanguagePackManifest, which is immediately followed by a Metadata child element. The Metadata element can contain up to 6 child elements, DisplayName, Description, MoreInfo, License, ReleaseNotes, and Icon. These child elements correspond to the DisplayName, Description, MoreInfo, License, ReleaseNotes, and Icon child elements of the Metadata element of the Extension.vsixmanifest file.

When you create a vsixlangpack file, you must set the Include in Vsix property to true. Otherwise, the localized installation text will be ignored.

To set the Include in Vsix property

  1. In Solution Explorer, right-click the Extension.vsixlangpack file, and then click Properties.

  2. In the Property Grid, click Include in Vsix, and set its value to true.



The following example shows relevant portions of an Extension.vsixmanifest file. The file also includes the corresponding Extension.vsixlangpack file for Spanish. The values from the language pack replace the values from the manifest if the Visual Studio locale of the target computer is set to Spanish.


  • [Extension.vsixmanifest]
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<PackageManifest ...>
  <Metadata ...>
    <DisplayName>Family Tree</DisplayName>
    <Description>This extension places a custom treeview control in the toolbox that is optimized for handling family tree information.</Description>
  <Installation .../>
  <Dependencies .../>
  <Prerequisites .../>
  <Assets .../>
  • [Extension.vsixlangpack]
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<PackageLanguagePackManifest Version="2.0.0" xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/developer/vsx-schema/2011">
    <DisplayName>Arbol de Familia</DisplayName>
    <Description> Esta extensión pone control personalizado en la caja de herramientas por manejar información de familia.</Description>
    <MoreInfo> http://www.contoso.com/products/es/ArbolDeFamilia.htm</MoreInfo>

See also

Title Description
VSIX Language Pack schema 2.0 reference A VSIX language pack describes the localization information of a .vsix deployment file.
Anatomy of a VSIX package Describes the structure and contents of a vsix package.
Localize menu commands Shows how to localize other text resources in an extension.