vbThis probably won’t be beneficial to many people, but I ran into an issue with getting Visual Studio 2005 Professional version installed. Now, this is the Open License version and doesn’t apply to retail versions of the product. So, the problem was that the installation was prompting me for a product key. No problem, I thought, we purchase all of our Microsoft products under their open license program. We are a non profit organization so we fall under their charity pricing which saves us a ton of money.

Normally when a Microsoft product prompts me for a product key and I don’t have it I simply goto eopen.microsoft.com which has all of our licensed products listed with their product keys. Well, the Visual Studio 2005 didn’t have a product key listed. After searching and poking around I broke down and called Microsoft. I got transferred to 6 different people and finally got a guy who said “it shouldn’t be prompting you for a product key.”

Ummm…ok. He said I probably already had a trial version installed so it thought I was upgrading and that’s why it was prompting for a product key. Well as it turns out he was partially right. Somewhere along the line I had installed “Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable.” I don’t even know what that was for, I certainly don’t have a clue about C++ but once that was removed the Visual Studio 2005 installed without a problem.

Update 3/8/07:  I’ve also since found that trying to install Visual Studio 2005 from a local copy of the install CD will also make it prompt for a product key.  In the past I’ve copied the full CDs for Visual studio (which I legally own) to my hard drive and installed from there as I hate trying to round up all the cd’s for software when I reload my computer.  I found some directions for copying and running the install from a network storage, but didn’t want to take the time to go through them all.