I am trying to install Visual Studio Community 2019 to a set of offline computers. I have followed the Visual studio instructions precisely and i have created the offline cache folder with all the files and .exe however when i try to install Visual Studio using the offline installer i get a prompt that it is "just getting things ready" then shows a window which attempts to download packages but again i have no network on these computers and i am really scratching my head as to why a OFFLINE installer is trying to connect to the internet...

What the hell is it doing and can i get it to skip this step somehow ?

here is what i have done:

1: Download the Visual Studio Comminity 2019 bootstrapper from:


2: Rename the downloaded Visual studio bootstrapper to vs_community.exe.

3: Within the CMD window enter: vs_community.exe --layout C:\vslayout --lang en-US

where C:\vslayout is the folder which shall be created and used to store the offline installer so change the path and name as preferred.

4: To install Visual studio using the offline installer, open the offline installers and run the setup.exe

But i get these dam windows popping up?

Before we get started we need to setup a few things...

Installer downloading files

  • I only downloaded the bootstrapped as per the instructions: Do not use the "Download all, then install" feature to create an offline cache that you intend to transfer to another computer. It's not designed to work that way. If you want to create an offline cache to install Visual Studio on another computer, see the Use the command line to create a local cache Aug 22, 2019 at 9:43

1 Answer 1


OK i managed to solve this issue. I first needed to install the certificates to the local machine either from the certificates folder which is inside the layout folder or by right clicking the setup.exe and then Properties - Digital signatures - click on the item in the list then click Details - view certificate - install certificate - Local machine and then just continue the process with the defaults.

Then once the certificates are installed i then run the .exe as administrator and it works :)

  • I'm glad that worked for you, but my Visual Studio 2019 offline installer still tries to download stuff (and fails).
    – ulatekh
    Oct 13, 2021 at 22:45

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