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Visual C++ Toolkit 2003

Brief Description
The Microsoft Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 includes the core tools developers need to compile and link C++-based applications for Windows and the .NET Common Language Runtime – compiler, linker, libraries, and sample code.
Quick Details
File Name:VCToolkitSetup.exe
Date Published:7/6/2004
Download Size:31.4 MB
Estimated Download Time: 1 hr 17 min 56K


The Microsoft Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 includes the core tools developers need to compile and link C++-based applications for Windows and the .NET Common Language Runtime:

  • Microsoft C/C++ Optimizing Compiler and Linker.  These are the same compiler and linker that ship with Visual Studio .NET 2003 Professional!

  • C Runtime Library and the C++ Standard Library, including the Standard Template Library.  These are the same static-link libraries included with Visual Studio.

  • Microsoft .NET Framework Common Language Runtime. Visual C++ can optionally build applications that target the Common Language
    Runtime (CLR).

  • Sample code.  The toolkit includes four samples designed to showcase the powerful new features of the 2003 version, including new optimization capabilities, features to improve code-security and robustness, enhanced ISO C++ standards support, and the ability to use the .NET Framework library and target the CLR.

Read about the samples included with the Toolkit, and the Visual C++ compiler technology used to implement them by visiting the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 Home Page.

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System Requirements

  • Supported Operating Systems: Windows 2000; Windows Server 2003; Windows XP
Note: If you have already installed Microsoft Visual Studio .NET 2003 Professional or Enterprise edition, you do not need to install the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 unless you want to specifically try the included samples.

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  1. Click the Download button to start the download.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • To start the installation immediately, click Open or Run this program from its current location.

    • To copy the download to your computer for installation at a later time, click Save or Save this program to disk.

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Additional Information

Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 Q&A

What is different about Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 version 1.01 from version 1.0?

The Visual C++ Toolkit 2003, version 1.01 (released July 6, 2004) supplants version 1.0 (released April 16, 2004). Version 1.01 updates the included Visual C++ compiler to exactly match the compiler that ships with Visual Studio .NET 2003 (build 13.10.3077). In the initial 1.0 Toolkit release, the build numbers of the compilers differed slightly. Version 1.01 of the Toolkit also corrects some minor grammatical issues in the sample whitepapers and in the command prompt window.

If I already have the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003 version 1.0, should I download 1.01?

There are no compilation-related behavior changes in the Toolkit version 1.01 from version 1.0. If you decide to install version 1.01 you should first uninstall version 1.0 using the Add or Remove Programs control panel.

What is the Visual C++ Toolkit 2003?
The Visual C++ Toolkit is a free edition of Microsoft’s professional Visual C++ optimizing compiler and standard libraries – the same optimizing compiler and standard libraries that ship in Visual Studio .NET 2003 Professional!

Are there any restrictions on how I use the Visual C++ Toolkit?
In general, no. You may use the Toolkit to build C++ -based applications, and you may redistribute those applications. Please read the End User License Agreement (EULA), included with the Toolkit, for complete details.

I have Visual Studio or Visual C++. Do I need the Visual C++ Toolkit?
The Visual C++ Toolkit will work fine alongside installed versions of Visual Studio and Visual C++. If you already use Visual Studio .NET 2003, you do not need the Visual C++ Toolkit, unless you want to see the included samples. Everything else included in the Toolkit is included with Visual Studio .NET 2003.

Is there any technical support available for the Visual C++ Toolkit?
No. The Visual C++ Toolkit is a free download and is provided without formal technical support. Documentation for the Visual C++ compiler is available online, and it is recommended that further assistance be obtained by posing questions in online programming newsgroups and community forums.

What does the Visual C++ Toolkit install on my machine?
The Toolkit installs 1) the Visual C++ command-line compiler and linker, and their dependencies. 2) the Visual C++ C Runtime Library and static-link modules, and the Standard C++ Library, including STL 3) the Microsoft .NET Framework Runtime, including library files necessary for building C++ applications that run on the .NET Common Language Runtime, 4) four samples demonstrating key features of the Visual C++ compiler and libraries.

What do I do after I’ve downloaded and installed the Visual C++ Toolkit?
Start by familiarizing yourself with the included samples. Learn how Visual C++ can help you write better applications. Learn how Visual C++ can better optimize your applications, and make them more robust. Learn how to incorporate advanced ISO C++ template features in your code. Learn how to optionally incorporate the .NET Framework in to your applications. Then, build your own C++ programs using the Toolkit. You might decide you want to augment the Toolkit with additional free tools from Microsoft, including the Platform SDK, or the .NET Framework SDK. You might also wish to evaluate and upgrade to Visual Studio .NET Professional, which includes many additional tools and features for C++ developers, including a professional debugger and code editor.

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