Microsoft Releases Next Iteration of Visual Studio 2012 , Update 3

The latest version is Release Candidate (RC) 2, and Microsoft says it's safe for production use.

What is likely to be the final Release Candidate (RC) for Visual Studio 2012 Update 3 is now shipping. The latest RC (which is the second one) mainly contains bug fixes.

Microsoft Technical Fellow Brian Harry made the announcement on his blog today. He also wants help from developers to find any stray remaining issues: "We're down to fixing just the last few bugs and if you are thinking up upgrading to Update 3, now would be a good time to give it a try and let us know if there are any last minute issues we need to fix," he wrote.

The official name for Update 3 is Visual Studio and Team Foundation Server 2012.3. A Microsoft support article has the complete rundown of fixes to numerous technologies inside Visual Studio 2012, including the debugger, the Visual Studio IDE itself, two languages -- F# and C++ -- and various testing tools. Update 3 also includes many changes to Team Foundation Server, Visual Studio's collaboration tool.

As was the previous iteration of 2012.3, this is a "go-live" version, acceptable for running on production machines. Supported operating systems go back to Windows 7, SP1, and on the server side, Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1.

The first RC of Update 3 came out in early May. Visual Studio has been a model for Microsoft's switch to Agile development methods, which stress frequent, smaller updates over large, infrequent updates typically seen in service packs, for example. The final release version of Update 3, if the current schedule holds, should be out in June.

About the Author

Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Virtualization & Cloud Review. Follow him on Twitter @VirtReviewKeith.

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