MSBuild task that bumps the version of a Visual Studio 2017 project.
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MSBump v2.3.2 Dec 13, 2017
Standalone v2.3.2 Dec 13, 2017
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_Release Documentation & test solution Jan 26, 2018
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MSBump.sln v2.3.2 Dec 13, 2017 Fixed #24 Jun 16, 2018


MSBump is a MSBuild 15 task that bumps the version of a Visual Studio 2017 project. Currently only tested on .csproj files.


I'm working on a lot of packages that are referencing each other, but they are in different solutions. To make my project references maintainable, I use a local NuGet feed, and reference my projects as NuGet packages. However, in this setup, I'd have to manually change the version every time I change something in a package that is referenced by other solutions, to make NuGet pull the updates. This task will increment any given part of the project version.


  1. Add the MSBump NuGet package to your project.
  2. Edit the project file. Make sure the file has a <Version> property.
  3. Create a .msbump settings file (see below) or add the corresponding properties to the project (see next section).

Warning: Until this NuGet issue is fixed, you should add PrivateAssets="All" to the PackageReference declaration, otherwise your package will list MSBump as a dependency.

Warning: NuGet client before version 4.6 had an issue (this) that resulted in incorrect dependency version numbers for P2P references in the generated NuGet packages. If you're experiencing this problem, try updating your NuGet client. If updating the NuGet client is not an option, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off "Generate NuGet package on build" in project properties.
  2. Add dotnet pack --no-build as a post-build task. After this, all your P2P references in the generated packages should have the correct (bumped) version after building the solution.


MSBump settings can be declared in a separate .msbump file. This file must be placed next to the project file, and must have the same name as the project file, but with the .msbump extension. Alternatively, it can be named simply as .msbump. The file itself is a JSON file that contains the properties for the task object. When per-configuration settings are desireable, the settings file should be structured like this:

  Configurations: {
    "Debug": {
      /* properties */
    "Release": {
      /* properties */

Note that when a .msbump file is present, all other properties declared in .targets files are ignored for the current project. This is helpful when we use repository-wide MSBump configuration, but want to override this behavior for some projects.

The settings file should contain any of the following properties:

BumpMajor, BumpMinor, BumpPatch and BumpRevision

These boolean properties control which part of the version is changed. To increment a specific part, add the corresponding property with true value.

Example - increment the revision number:

  BumpRevision: true

From an initial version of 1.0.0, hitting build multiple times will change the version to,, etc.

BumpLabel and LabelDigits

Using these properties, the task will add or increment a release label. Labels must be alphanumeric, and must not end in a digit. LabelDigits defaults to 6 if not specified.

Example - add a dev label with a 4-digit counter on every build:

  BumpLabel: "dev",
  LabelDigits: 4

ResetMajor, ResetMinor, ResetPatch, ResetRevision and ResetLabel

These properties will reset any part of the version. Major, Minor, Patch and Revision is reset to 0. When ResetLabel is used, the specified label is removed from the version.

Example - Increment the revision number on every Release build, add dev label with a 4-digit counter on Debug builds.

  Configurations: {
    "Debug": {
      BumpLabel: "dev",
      LabelDigits: 4
    "Release": {
      BumpRevision: true,
      ResetLabel: "dev"

Reset properties are prioritized over Bump properties.

Settings using project properties

When for some reason creating a .msbump file is not optimal - eg. when declaring these settings in Directory.Build.targets - the above properties can be placed inside the MSBuild project. When doing so, use the below table to map the JSON properties to project properties:

Property name MSBuild project property
BumpMajor BumpMajor
BumpMinor BumpMinor
BumpPatch BumpPatch
BumpRevision BumpRevision
BumpLabel BumpLabel
LabelDigits BumpLabelDigits
ResetMajor BumpResetMajor
ResetMinor BumpResetMinor
ResetPatch BumpResetPatch
ResetRevision BumpResetRevision
ResetLabel BumpResetLabel

Example - the previous example, using project properties

<PropertyGroup Condition="$(Configuration) == 'Debug'">
<PropertyGroup Condition="$(Configuration) == 'Release'">

Standalone version

Use this method if adding a NuGet package is not an option

  1. Locate your MSBuild folder. It is usually Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio\2017\(your edition)\MSBuild.
  2. Extract the contents of the zip file to this folder (you should end up with an MSBump folder under MSBuild, with .dll and .targets files.
  3. Edit your project file OR Directory.Build.targets file, if you want to enforce these build settings to a solution or entire repository (see the MSBuild documentation)
  4. Import MSBump.targets
  <Import Project="$(MSBuildExtensionsPath)\MSBump\MSBump.targets" />
  1. Create the settings the same way as for the NuGet version.

Version history

2.3.2 (2017-12-13)

  • Added support for multi-targeting projects
  • Added support for projects with a default namespace (thanks to @jessyhoule)

2.3.0 (2017-08-19)

  • .NET Standard support. MSBump now works with dotnet build.

2.2.0 (2017-08-15)

  • Added support for settings file. No need to modify the project file at all when using the NuGet version.
  • Cleaned up .targets files so that the standalone and NuGet version can work side by side.

2.1.0 (2017-08-12)

  • MSBump now correctly bumps the version before build and pack, the built and packaged project always has the same version as the project file.

2.0.0 (2017-04-26)

  • Added NuGet package
  • Major, Minor, Patch and Revision are now simple boolean properties.


Initial standalone version