There are multiple ways to acquire Visual Studio based on your needs. The most common is to purchase a Visual Studio subscription. This provides a comprehensive set of tools and resources for you to create, deploy, and manage your next great application. All on your preferred platform and device with the power of Visual Studio IDE.
Depending on the size of your business, there are different agreements and licensing types that are available. You can purchase directly from the Visual Studio Marketplace. You can also purchase through Microsoft Volume Licensing for commercial licensing agreements or a Solution Partner.
As an individual, you have a few options depending on your needs. You can purchase a monthly subscription from the Visual Studio Marketplace if you just need access to the IDE and want the flexibility of a monthly subscription. You can also purchase the subscription which includes the IDE as well as many other benefits such as Azure dev/test individual credits, Azure DevOps, training, services, support and more, from the Microsoft Store.
Monthly subscriptions are billed each month and provide billing flexibility. This is a great option for those that just need to use the IDE for a short time, and don’t need the other benefits. The standard subscription includes access to more benefits such as the Azure dev/test individual credits, software and download access, services, training, and support. The standard subscription is a perpetual license meaning you’ve purchased Visual Studio and can continue to use the product after the subscription expires.
There aren’t any discounts available to start-ups, however an unlimited number of users within an organization can use Visual Studio Community for the following scenarios: in a classroom learning environment, for academic research, or for contributing to open source projects. For more information about Visual Studio Community, please see the licensing terms. For more information about options for start-ups visit https://startups.microsoft.com.
For all other usage scenarios:
In non-enterprise organizations, up to five users can use Visual Studio Community. In enterprise organizations (meaning those with >250 PCs or >$1 Million US Dollars in annual revenue), no use is permitted beyond the open source, academic research, and classroom learning environment scenarios described above.
Take a look at the comparison charts to see the options available with each subscription level to determine which subscription meets your needs. If you aren’t sure which benefits you need, you can take a look at our Visual Studio subscriptions benefits page which provides more details about each of the benefits that are included with each subscription level.
To access your subscription benefits, go to https://my.visualstudio.com and sign in using the email address that you used to sign up for the subscription (or the one that your administrator used to assign one to you). Once you’re signed in, all of your benefits will be in the portal.
Available benefits vary by subscription level and are subject to change. To see which benefits are included for each subscription level, please visit the benefits webpage. You can select the subscription you’re interested in, and then see which benefits are available in the various levels.
If you purchase a Visual Studio subscription, both current and old versions of Visual Studio are available. To see the exact versions available for various subscription levels, download the complete list of software. For access to previous versions of Visual Studio Community you can go here.
Any individual can sign up for Visual Studio Community to create their own free or paid apps. There are restrictions for organizations that wish to use Visual Studio Community. For more information, visit the Visual Studio Community page.
Azure DevOps Server is included in all paid subscription levels. Azure DevOps Basic Plan is included in all paid subscription levels. Visual Studio Enterprise standard and monthly, Visual Studio Test Professional and MSDN Platforms include Test Plans as well.
Yes. Visual Studio subscriptions are licensed per user, not per machine. So if you have an active subscription, you are allowed to use the software anywhere. For more information about usage rights, download the Visual Studio Licensing whitepaper.