Visual Studio 2017 for Mac - Preview Release Notes

In this article, you will find information regarding the current preview release for Visual Studio 2017 for Mac. You can install this Preview version by changing the updater channel in Visual Studio for Mac.


This release is not "go-live" and not intended for use on production computers or for creating production code.

To learn more about Visual Studio 2017 for Mac, see Mac System Requirements and Mac Platform Targeting and Compatibility.

To learn more about other related downloads, see the Downloads page.


We’d love to hear from you! You can report a problem via the Report a Problem option in Visual Studio for Mac IDE. You can track your feedback in the Developer Community portal. For suggestions, let us know through UserVoice.

Known Issues

Please refer to the Known Issues section.

Release Date: February 23, 2018 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.4 Preview 5 (

Issues Fixed in this Release

Top issues fixed in this release:

Release Date: February 7, 2018 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.4 Preview 4 (

Issues Fixed in this Release

These are the customer-reported issues addressed in this release:

Release Date: January 24, 2018 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.4 Preview 3 (

This release includes bug fixes and improvements.


  • File watcher to detect files added to the project. Visual Studio for Mac will now detect files added to or removed from a .NET Core project and update the Solution window with the changes dynamically. This improvement addressed the unload/reload required after EF migrations issue reported in the Developer Community.

Bug Fixes:

Release Date: January 10, 2018 - Visual Studio 2017 version 7.4 Preview 2 (

This is the first preview release of Visual Studio for Mac 7.4

For the Visual Studio for Mac 7.4 release, we've taken time to focus on fixing some of the top memory leaks, performance problems, and stability issues that have been reported to us. This release also brings support for Android Oreo 8.1 development and several productivity enhancements for Xamarin developers.


  • Locked Device Alert

    • Visual Studio for Mac now asks to unlock the deployment device before launching the app (Figure 1) and does not interrupt the debugging session anymore.

      Alert advising user to unlock iOS device
      (Figure 1) Alert advising user to unlock iOS device
  • Wi-Fi debugging

    • Devices connected via a network will now show up in Visual Studio for Mac (Figure 2):

      Apple device connected over Wi-Fi selected in device list
      (Figure 2) Apple device connected over Wi-Fi can be in device list

Look for a device with a Wi-Fi icon and press the run button to deploy / debug your app on it. We're taking care of enabling Wi-Fi debugging for you.


Before you can use the Wi-Fi debugging feature, you'll first need to follow the steps in the Pair a wireless device with Xcode guide to connect your device wirelessly in Xcode.

To use feature you must be using Xamarin.iOS 11.8 or later.

  • CoreML

    • Visual Studio for Mac now auto-generates C# bindings for CoreML models when they are added to a project allowing for quick & easy usage of CoreML models.
  • Provisioning Improvements

    • This release introduces a better fastlane installation workflow. If fastlane is not installed, instead of showing an error dialog asking users to read the provisioning documentation and install fastlane themselves, we provide a way to do it within the IDE.
    • Depending on the internet speed and computer parameters the installation can take up to two minutes. For this reason, fastlane will be downloaded in the background for your convenience.
    • We made a number of UI improvements to the automatic provisioning widget in Info.plist editor. The new widget draws a definite distinction between manual and automatic provisioning modes and communicates provisioning status to the user.

iOS Designer

  • Constraints Mode Key Bindings:

    New key bindings make it easier to work with the new constraints mode (introduced in 15.5). For example:

    • Toggle constraints mode: ⌘ E
    • Temporarily enable constraints mode: Hold ⌃
    • In constraints mode, update constraints; else update frames: ⇧ ⌘ R
  • Trait Variations can now be enabled for tvOS :

    Trait variations can now be enabled for tvOS storyboards and XIBs, which enables variation by light style or dark style.

  • Automatic Zoom Out when dragging large items from the Toolbox:

    The design surface now automatically zooms out when you drag a large item from the toolbox. This makes it easier to place large items on your XIB or storyboard.

  • Zoom Indicator and Selector:

    Indicates current zoom level percentage and enables selecting zoom levels from a pop up list.


Android 8.1 Oreo support

Android 8.1 Oreo is the latest version of Android available from Google. Android 8.1 Oreo offers many new features of interest to Xamarin.Android developers such as Android Go, Neural Networks API, Autofill Framework updates, SharedMemory API, and many more. These APIs are available to Xamarin.Android apps when you use Xamarin.Android 8.2 and later.

  • We've added integration for the Xamarin Android Device Manager (preview) for users with SDK Tools 26 installed. For more information, refer to the documentation.

  • You'll now be warned if the Android emulator is not using HAXM.

Android Designer

  • Android resource parsing and processing has been vastly revamped in this release resulting in increased performance and accuracy across the board.
  • Added Android Oreo (API 26) rendering support.
  • Oreo features like custom fonts and adaptive icons are now supported.
  • Rendering speed improvements.
  • Improved IntelliSense completion experience.

Improved XAML editing experience

We fixed a number of bugs to improve XAML editing:

  • [FIXED] Inconsistent behavior in XML/XAML editor between vs/vsmac when hitting "ENTER" in to add a new attribute to an element.
  • [FIXED] Many elements are missing from completion: ResourceDictionary, x:Double, x:Key etc.
  • [FIXED] No IntelliSense after typing period in name.
  • [FIXED] One Platform is missing from IntelliSense.
  • [FIXED] Tab key inserts spaces, indenter inserts tabs.
  • [FIXED] XAML IntelliSense lists element properties sorted by length of name.


  • Use .vs directory for .userprefs

    • To improve compatibility with Visual Studio on Windows the user preferences file generated by Visual Studio for Mac are no longer stored in the solution directory but are now stored in .vs/SolutionName/xs/UserPrefs.xml.
  • Debugger source lookup

    • Added support for Debug Source Files tab in solution options (Figure 3). To keep the UI clean this menu appears only appear after you adds the first folder.

      Debug source files option
      (Figure 3) Debug source files option
    • When user tries to navigate to stack frame or step into method and debugger doesn't find source files. Instead of showing disassembly it will show new Source Not Found document (Figure 4), which allows user to lookup source files at different location from location when assembly was compiled. This is useful when debugging assemblies that were compiled on CI and user has access to source files and .pdb file.

      New 'source not found' dialog
      (Figure 4) New "source not found" dialog
  • Xamarin Workbooks and Installer

    • We have fully split Xamarin Inspector from Xamarin Workbooks. The Inspector extension no longer requires a Workbooks installation to function.

Top Issues Fixed in this Release

Known Issues