Important Notice on the future of AddOn Studio

Please read about Lua Studio - The Evolution of AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft!



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AddOn Studio FAQ

Last updated Feb: 15th

What is AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft?

AddOn Studio (AOS) is an open source development environment designed to bring a Visual Studio-like experience to building World of Warcraft AddOns. For more information on exactly what AOS does, check out the list of features below.

Where can I download it?

A new Beta build of AddOn Studio is now available (Feb 15) and has been updated to work with Wrath of the Lich King. You can Download it here

Does AddOn Studio require Visual Studio to be installed?

No, AddOn Studio works independently of Visual Studio. If you do have Visual Studio installed, AddOn Studio will work just fine.

I'm having problems installing AddOn Studio, what should I do?

First try installing the Visual Studio Shell link in the release notes. If that doesn't work, please file a bug and include 1) Operating System, 2).NET Framework version installed, 3)installation log.

What features are included in AddOn Studio?

Visual Design Surface
AddOn Studio includes a set of toolbox controls that you can drag-and-drop onto the designer to visually design the layout of your addon including popular Visual Studio features like Snap lines which enable you to visually align controls.
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FrameXML Tree View
Visualize the hierarchy of nested controls in your FrameXML file including virtual controls
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Visually Browse Warcraft Resources (MPQ files)
You can now browse and add Warcraft resources directly into your addons including class ability icons (Druid, Rogue, Priest, etc), common frames (Bank, Calendar, Chat, Guild, etc), and Common Buttons (close, scrolling, main menu, etc)
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Visually Design Frame Backdrops
AddOn Studio includes a Backdrop editor tool to easily design and visualize an XML Frame.
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Default to XML View for Advanced Developers
For advanced developers that want to hand-code FrameXML files, AddOn Studio now includes the option to turn off the Visual Designer and just use the XML editing tools.
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WowProgramming-powered IntelliSense
The IntelliSense engine has been updated using the Wow Programming API Reference. It includes detailed parameters and return types.
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FrameXML IntelliSense
AddOn Studio provides built-in support for FrameXML schema validation for addon developers who want to manually edit and customize FrameXML markup (see readme for setup notes).
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Auto-Generate AddOn Table of Contents (TOC)
AddOn Studio also takes the hassle out of building the Table of Contents (TOC) file by automatically building it based on what files are in your project. You can easily change the order of files in the TOC.
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Visually add Table of Contents (TOC) Metadata
AddOn Studio also makes it easy to add metadata to your Tables of Contents (TOC) file including Title, Author, version, and a number of other common metadata attributes as well as custom attributes.
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Auto-Generate Lua Events - The Addon Studio property window shows all of the properties and events available for a Lua control or frame and enables one-click creation of event handlers like a button_OnClick event.
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Other Features - AddOn Studio includes lots more features including automatic deployment to your Warcraft directory, Task Window, Error List for FrameXML and Lua parsing errors, TGA and MP3 file format support, powerful search-and-replace features, and its fully extensible so that developers can build additional tools and editors to improve addon development.

How was AddOn Studio created? How can I build my own Visual Studio like IDE?

AddOn Studio is built using the free Visual Studio Shell. is build developers looking for examples of how to build their own IDE. For more information on extensibility or the Visual Studio Shell, please visit .

Can I Build/Compile AddOn Studio?

If you would like to contribute to AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft or you just want to build it yourself, visit Download it here and follow the Build Notes described there.

Add-ins for AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft

AddOn Studio itself is extensibile the same way Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 and other Visual Studio Shell products are. See the Add-ins page for add-ins developed for AddOn Studio by the authors and the community. To build your own add-in for AddOn Studio, refer to Build your own add-in for AddOn Studio and the Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 SDK.

What are some recommended resources for learning how to build Warcraft AddOns?


Who has worked on or contributed to AddOn Studio?

This project wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for: Catherine Crim, Shawn Nandi, Anson Horton, James Lau, and the amazing team at EPAM including Attila Szucs, Tamas Herner, Gabor Ratky and Attila Kisko. Special thanks also to the Microsoft World of Warcraft alias for helping us with the bug bash! Custom artwork created by Lisa Jones, Game Artist.

AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft is not created or endorsed by Blizzard Entertainment. World of Warcraft is a registered trademark of Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

Last edited Jul 17, 2010 at 12:49 AM by danielfe, version 34