17. November 2013

How to build sample applications from Adobe Illustrator SDK CC by Microsoft Visual Studio 2013 Express

Let’s try to build sample applications from Adobe Illustrator SDK CC with Express version of Visual Studio.

Adobe Illustrator SDK is available at: http://www.adobe.com/devnet/illustrator/sdk.html

In readme file Adobe explicitly states requirement that you should use Microsoft Visual C++ 10 (Visual Studio 2010 SP1). Hm.

Unzip directory with SDK and go to samples directory. Let’s start with LiveDropShadow sample.

Double click LiveDropShadow.vcxproj to open project in Visual Studio 2013. Hit F7 to build the project.

You’ll get error message:

Error 1 error MSB8020: The build tools for Visual Studio 2010 (Platform Toolset = ‘v100’) cannot be found. To build using the v100 build tools, please install Visual Studio 2010 build tools.  Alternatively, you may upgrade to the current Visual Studio tools by selecting the Project menu or right-click the solution, and then selecting “Upgrade Solution…”. C:\Program Files (x86)\MSBuild\Microsoft.Cpp\v4.0\V120\Microsoft.Cpp.Platform.targets


Go to menu Project and select Retarget solution:


This action converts project into project for VS 2013. Hit F7 for build.

After several seconds compilation fails and you’ll get another error message:

Error 20 error RC1015: cannot open include file ‘afxres.h’. C:\idea\Adobe Illustrator CC SDK\samplecode\LiveDropShadow\Resources\LiveDropShadow.rc 26 1 LiveDropShadow


Double click error message and you’ll see problematic code.


Problematic is include of afxres.h. It is reference to MFC library which is not part of Visual Studio Express 2013 edition. MFC is available only in Professional version. Do not worry. For many plugins you do not need MFC.

You can disable this include. There is also another problem few lines below with language code. We can disable this line of code for time being.

illustrator-problematic-code-02Hit F7. You’ll get error message that points into VersionInfo.rc file. There are several defines referencing MFC. You can disable those line for time being. (FILEFLAGMASK, FILEOS, FILETYPE, FILESUBTYPE)


Hit F7 and now you’ll get AIP package 🙂


Open Illustrator and configure path to Additional Plug-ins folder. Click Edit – Preferences – Plug-ins & Scratch Disks and set path to the folder where Visual Studio produced that aip file. It will be in directory Adobe Illustrator CC SDK\samplecode\output\win….


Click OK, restart Illustrator.

Tadaaa, plug-in is working:




For more information about plug-ins read getting-started-guide.pdf document in SDK directory docs\guides. 🙂


26. March 2011

From Illustrator to Windows Phone 7 application

Adobe AIR is quite advanced platform for building mobile applications. We can take our graphic assets, put them into Catalyst project. We can add some logic and interaction in Flash Builder. The only problem is that actual version of AIR does not support Windows Phone 7. Adobe said that engineers are working on that, but there is no official support yet. Maybe soon, who knows?

The question is how to build app for Windows Phone 7 using our graphic assets. Good news. We can reuse all graphic assets from Illustrator, Photoshop or files in FXG format.

The workflow for WP7 is similar to workflow for Adobe AIR, just tools are little bit different.

We can follow these steps:

  • create assets using Photoshop, Illustrator or Catalyst.
  • grab developer tools from create.msdn.com
  • import assets to Expression Blend 4 and design application layout, save the solution
  • open solution in Visual Studio and add some logic
  • run application on device or in emulator

Here is small video which demonstrates this workflow: