Set Up Sharepoint Server 2016 Project Templates For Visual Studio 2015


SharePoint Server 2016 is said to be the most stable and mature release of SharePoint, with new advanced hybrid features. The new features of SharePoint Server 2016 can be read from this article. The series that discusses the installation of SharePoint 2016 in Azure can be found at C# Corner at the following links. 

Once we have installed SharePoint 2016, we have to make sure that Visual Studio has the required templates available to start development against SharePoint Server 2016.

Visual Studio  

Development for SharePoint 2016 can be kick started with Visual Studio 2015. Spin up Visual Studio and try to create a new project.

Visual Studio  
As you can see, the SharePoint project templates are not available for starting Server Side development or Add-in (previously App) Projects. Default installation of Visual Studio 2015 does not install SharePoint 2016 templates. In order to set up SharePoint 2016 templates, we have to ensure that we have the latest version of Office Developer Tools Preview, installed for Visual Studio.
Install Office Developer Tools Preview 2 for Visual Studio 

Office Developer Tools Preview 2 for Visual Studio contains the new templates that support SharePoint 2016 add-in development. It also contains the new templates for creating server-side project templates, like Visual Web part. You can find the installer here.

Developer Tools Preview

Click on "Download" and select the installer bundle. Select the language specific installer file.

Developer Tools Preview  

Click on "Install".

 Developer Tools Preview  

This will install the Office Developer Tools Preview 2 with the Office Templates and SharePoint 2016 Templates for Visual Studio.

Office Templates  

Wait for the installer to complete the installation.

 complete the installation

Now, let’s spin up the Visual Studio once again, and see if the SharePoint 2016 templates are available in the available project templates.

project templates

As you can see, the SharePoint 2016 templates have become available in the list of Visual Studio project templates. It has retained the SharePoint 2010 and SharePoint 2013 templates as well.

 project templates 

In addition to the Server side templates, we have add-in (app) templates for SharePoint in the template list. On top of the SharePoint Add-in templates, there are other office add-in templates as well (Excel, word, PowerPoint or outlook). With these new templates, you can add new functionality as an add-in.


Upon selecting the add-in template, we have the option to work with SharePoint Hosted add-ins and Provider Hosted add-ins.

SharePoint Hosted

The SharePoint add-in template provides the option to select the destination SharePoint version for project deployment.

SharePoint version

Thus, the project templates required for SharePoint 2016 development have been configured in the local environment. In order to start development with SharePoint add-ins, we have some extra environment configurations that need to be done which you can read from here.

In the upcoming articles, we will see more about add-in development in SharePoint Server 2016.


Thus, we saw how to set up Visual Studio environment for starting add-in and server side development with SharePoint Server 2016.