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Set up a development environment

Describes how to set up an Optimizely Customized Commerce development environment in version 13.

Optimizely is installed through Visual Studio and the Optimizely Visual Studio Extension, providing everything you need to get a website running and start developing.



See the Optimizely system requirements for production and development environment requirements.

Install Visual Studio

Visit Microsoft Visual Studio to download a suitable version, if you do not already have Visual Studio installed.

When installing Customized Commerce through Visual Studio, you will use IIS Express, SQL Server Express and LocalDB, which are included with VS 2015 and higher. Ensure that you install LocalDB separately, should you not have this.


A license is not required when running in Visual Studio and using IIS Express.

Eventually, you will need a commercial Optimizely license for testing and production environments. You can order a time-limited demo license for evaluation purposes from the Optimizely License Center.

Explore advanced features

Later on, when you want to explore more advanced features like multi-site and language support, and to test deployment locally, you will need a more production-like development environment using Internet Information Services (IIS).

When testing deployment and backup and restoring of databases, it is also recommended to install either SQL Express or SQL Server Developer Edition and Management Studio.