Home > Custom Development, SharePoint > SharePoint Development on 64 bit Environment

SharePoint Development on 64 bit Environment

If anyone is planning to build a 64 bit development environment for SharePoint, then you got to read this. If your plan is to use 64 bit environment to develop SharePoint Workflows using Visual Studio 2008, then you are out of luck as Visual Studio Tools for Office (VSTO) 2008 do not support 64 bit.

If you are creating a new SharePoint 2007 Sequential Workflow Project or SharePoint 2007 State Machine Workflow using Visual Studio 2008, it will result in the following error

“Object reference not set to an instance of an object”


SharePoint site location entered is not valid. The SharePoint site at http://<serverpath&gt; could not be found. Verify that you have typed the URL correctly”.

If you are using Visual Studio 2008 Service Pack 1 (SP1), then you will get the following message

A 32-bit version of SharePoint Server is not installed.Please install a 32-bit version of SharePoint Server.

Well, isn’t that great. Microsoft wants all of us to move to 64 bit architecture but does not support workflow development for SharePoint 2007 using Visual Studio 2008 on a 64 bit environment.

If you read the actual Visual Studio 2008 read me file, it mentioned that 64 bit is not supported for VSTO. But who reads the read me file?????

So whats the work around?

You can build and debug your Workflow solutions on a 32 bit machine and deploy them on a 64 bit machine. The solutions will work absolutely fine.

But the downside is that you need to maintain both 32 bit and 64 bit machines. Microsoft is not planning on supporting 64 bit work flow development using Visual Studio 2008, you can read all about it here and here.

I am exploring to see if you can use Visual Studio 2010 to do develop Workflow Solutions for SharePoint 2007 on a 64 bit environment! Will post on it at a later time.

  1. April 29, 2010 at 9:14 pm

    That was a big suprise to know that I can’t develop sharepoint workflow in Visual Studio 2008 on 64x.
    But the great news is that you still can enjoy it if you make use of WSPBuilder extension – WSPBuilder

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