Create an ArcGIS Runtime deployment

Apps built with ArcGIS Runtime SDK for .NET require an ArcGIS Runtime deployment. The ArcGIS Runtime deployment contains the minimum set of ArcGIS Runtime components required to support the functionality in your app, from rendering beautiful maps to performing complex GIS analysis. Excluding unrequired components allows you to create focused apps with a smaller footprint, containing only the capabilities you need.

Define ArcGIS Runtime components to deploy

You can build an ArcGIS Runtime deployment directly in the Visual Studio IDE via a deployment manifest file that you add to your project and modify using the manifest designer.


Deployment steps differ for each platform in ArcGIS Runtime SDK for .NET (Windows Desktop, Windows Store, and Windows Phone). Consult the deployment information for each platform you want to deploy.

The ArcGIS Runtime API for Windows Phone and Store does not use the developer installation but automatically includes the core ArcGIS Runtime components as soon as a project is built in the location specified by the Output path property of the project.

The following image shows the options available in the deployment manifest designer. Because Visual Studio handles including ArcGIS Runtime in the app package, it is not listed as an option in the manifest.

Deployment manifest file

It is not necessary to use the ArcGIS Runtime deployment unless you want to display specialized symbology in your app that is referenced by the ArcGISRuntimeEnvironment.SymbolsPath property. To display specialized symbology in your app, you will need to include the symbol sets in your deployment using the deployment manifest file. Once you have specified the symbology required and built the project, the deployment creates a folder named arcgisruntime<version> with a resources folder containing all the specialized symbol sets.

You will require an ArcGIS Runtime deployment for every target platform. The deployment manifest file will automatically detect the current platform target of each project in which it is included and build an ArcGIS Runtime with the appropriate architecture. This can be one or more of x86 (32 bit), x64 (64 bit), any CPU, or ARM depending on your app type.

ArcGIS Runtime deployment manifest file

The ArcGIS Runtime deployment manifest file allows you to define your ArcGIS Runtime deployment using Visual Studio. The deployment manifest file is added using the Project context menu and is edited by choosing components in the manifest designer UI.

The deployment manifest designer has a UI that allows you to do the following:

  • Choose the target project from a list of projects in which the manifest is included (in the current solution).
  • View the current solution configuration (debug or release and x86, x64, or ARM).
  • Choose the required specialized symbology.
  • View the total estimated deployment size as you choose components to include or exclude.

The deployment manifest file can be included in a single project such as a WPF application, or it can be included in a shared project and used by multiple dependent projects. The deployment manifest will detect if it is shared, and the manifest designer will allow you to choose the desired target project from a list of available projects within the current open solution. To choose different deployment options for each project in the solution, you should add a separate deployment manifest to each project. The deployment manifest will automatically detect the current platform target of each project in which it is included and build an ArcGIS Runtime deployment with the appropriate architecture.


The platform target is a property of your project and is modified in the Project properties designer or the Solution Configuration Manager dialog box. The deployment manifest shows you the current setting, but it does not provide a tool that allows you to change it.

Manifest file versions

The Deployment.arcgisruntimemanifest file displays the version of the most current ArcGIS Runtime SDK and the version of the SDK from which the manifest file was produced.

Deployment file shows the version of the extension SDK and the manifest file SDK

You can update a deployment from a previous version (a project in which the manifest file version preceeds the extension SDK version, in other words) using the existing deployment manifest file. Upon building your project, a deployment for the previous SDK version will be generated (the same version as the manifest file).

You cannot, however, update your application deployment with an older manifest file if you change the referenced ArcGIS Runtime assemblies to a newer version. To upgrade such a deployment, delete the existing deployment manifest file, update your SDK references, add a new deployment manifest, and recreate the required settings.

Create a deployment using the manifest designer

Follow these steps to create an ArcGIS Runtime deployment.


The menu item for adding an ArcGIS Runtime Deployment Manifest is not available in the Express editions of Visual Studio.

  1. Open the project or solution for your ArcGIS Runtime app in Visual Studio.
  2. Right-click the project listing in the Solution Explorer window and choose Add ArcGIS Runtime .NET Deployment Manifest. This adds a file to your project, named Deployment.arcgisruntimemanifest.

    Visual Studio project menu

  3. Access the manifest editor by double-clicking the manifest file or right-clicking the manifest file and choosing Open.
  4. Click Yes if Visual Studio asks if you want to update and save the project.
    Visual Studio prompt to update and save the project

    You will then get a file modification warning as the ArcGIS Runtime deployment build extensions make changes to the project file. Click Reload.

    Visual Studio warning

  5. If the manifest is included in multiple projects, choose the target project from the list.
  6. Choose required ArcGIS Runtime components for capabilities you have included in the app you want to deploy.
  7. After choosing all required components, view the estimated deployment size.
  8. Build the project.
  9. When you build your project, an ArcGIS Runtime deployment will be created in the project's output location.

    The deployment folder contains a resources folder with a symbols subfolder that contains the specific symbol sets you chose.

    ArcGIS Runtime deployment with specialized symbol sets

  10. After building your project, create a package for your app (click Project menu > Store > Create app packages). The app package will include your ArcGIS Runtime deployment. To test your app package, you can sideload your app onto a device following instructions provided in this Microsoft article: How to deploy and run an app for Windows Phone .

Runtime functionality options

The ArcGIS Runtime components available to include in your deployment are described in the following table.


Specialized Symbology

Additional symbol sets required by your app.

Military (MIL2525C)

Supports the handling and display of military messages using a MIL-STD-2525C-based symbol dictionary.

Hydrographic (S57)

Supports the handling and display of S57 data.

Create an ArcGIS Runtime deployment without the manifest

An ArcGIS Runtime deployment can be created manually without using the ArcGIS Runtime deployment tool.

  1. Create a new folder to contain the deployment and provide a descriptive name.
  2. Copy the executable for your application and any required supporting files from your project (data, resources, and so on) to the deployment folder.
  3. Copy the ArcGIS Runtime for .NET assembly and the Esri.ArcGISRuntime.dll file to the deployment folder. This file is in the same location as your executable.
  4. Copy the entire ArcGISRuntime<version> folder from your ArcGIS Runtime SDK for .NET installation directory to your deployment directory.
  5. Expand the ArcGISRuntime<version> subfolder (in your deployment folder) and delete folders for platforms you do not want to deploy (if any). If you are building a deployment for 64 bit exclusively, for example, delete the Client32 subfolder. Your deployment must include at least one client folder.
  6. Load your app onto a device and verify that it starts and works as expected.
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