Installing Xamarin.iOS on Windows

This article describes how to set up a Windows machine and a Mac build host for Xamarin.iOS development.


To build Xamarin.iOS apps with Visual Studio 2017 on Windows, you will need:

  • A Windows machine with Visual Studio 2017 installed. This can be a physical or a virtual machine.

  • A network-accessible Mac set up with Apple's build tools and Xamarin.iOS. Visual Studio 2017 accesses this machine over a network connection to use Apple's build tools, which are required for compiling native iOS applications.


To get set up for Xamarin.iOS development in Visual Studio 2017, follow these steps:

  1. Set up Windows (Install Visual Studio 2017)

    Xamarin.iOS works with Visual Studio 2017 Community, Professional, and Enterprise editions, on a standalone or virtual machine.

  2. Set up Mac (Install Xcode and Visual Studio for Mac)

    To build, debug, and sign iOS applications for distribution, Visual Studio 2017 must have network access to a Mac build host configured with both Apple's developer tools (Xcode) and Xamarin.iOS.


    If you would prefer not to install Visual Studio for Mac, starting with Visual Studio 2017 version 15.6, Visual Studio 2017 can automatically configure the Mac build host with the software necessary to build Xamarin.iOS applications. For more information, see Automatic Mac provisioning.

  3. Pair to Mac (Connect Visual Studio 2017 to the Mac)

    For Visual Studio 2017 to use the iOS build tools on the Mac, the two machines must connect over a network.


This article described how to set up a Windows machine and its associated Mac build host for Xamarin.iOS development.

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