Intel Fortran and Microsoft Visual Studio

Intel Fortran and Microsoft Visual Studio

Can you give me some advice on the relation between Intel Fortran and Microsoft Visual Studio? I'm intending to upgrade a very
old version of Intel Fortran to one of Intel Fortran Composer, Intel Fortran Studio or Intel Parallel Studio (for windows). Do these
products come with Microsoft Visual Studio or do I need to buy that separately? Does it vary between the various Intel products
and/or is there a difference between the full Visual Studio and the version provided with Intel Fortran?

Many thanks for any help you can offer.


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Intel Visual Fortran versions, starting with 10.0, include a Fortran development environment based on Microsoft Visual Studio. The current product uses Visual Studio 2010 Shell (and includes additional Microsoft tools and libraries that don't come with the shell itself.) There is nothing else to buy if you're only using Fortran. It is not the same as a full retail Visual Studio in that it does not include any of the Microsoft language tools (VC, VB, etc.). It also does not include the resource editor, but you can get a freeware resource editor that works fairly well.

The VS-based environment is included with all Intel products that include Fortran (including Parallel Studio XE), but it can't be used with Intel C++. Evaluation and Student licenses do not include the VS environment. If you have a separately purchased VS2008, VS2010 or VS2012, Intel Visual Fortran Composer XE 2013 works with those.

Does this answer your questions?

Retired 12/31/2016

If you want C++ or other Visual Studio language developer tools, you would want the full Visual Studio.  Otherwise, the Visual Studio Shell provided with ifort (except for student version) is likely to be sufficient; it satisfies the ifort requirement for Visual Studio linker and libraries, as well as providing a GUI development enivironment. 

The full Parallel Studio, as well as Fortran Studio, support the Visual Studio Shell option for Fortran without the separate Visual Studio purchase, although it's not necessarily apparent from the ads.  It wouldn't make sense to buy the full Parallel Studio to run without VIsual Studio, as the C++ would lose a majority of its functionality.

The ad also fails to clarify whether the profiling and analysis tools of Fortran Studio can run from within the Visual Studio Shell, for those who prefer that mode of operation.  I always run VTune outside of VS GUI myself, so I wouldn't care about such capability, but this raises a question about the static analyzer.

I'm sure Steve could clarify this.

The analysis tools (VTune Amplifier XE, Inspector XE, Advisor XE) work from the Shell. Only Intel C++ can't (MS restriction.)

Retired 12/31/2016

Many thanks - that's just what I wanted to know.

I have a couple of follow up questions - I think I know the answers but just want to check.

Is the Fortran compiler the same in the various products? E.g. is its full parallel capability (e.g. OMP) available even without
"Parallel" in the product title? I realise some other parallel tools (e.g. MPI library and things intended primarily for C++) won't
be available in all products.

Does "licence with support (1 year) (single user)" (which I've seen on a distributors site) mean that the support is 1 year (not
the licence which is hopefully indefinite)? Also does the "single user" refer to a single named user id or can the product be
made available to all users on one machine (as I think used to be the case)?

The compiler is the same in all the variations - the "Studio" products are just bundles of products. Two exceptions: the "Static Analysis" advanced diagnostic feature is available only with a "Studio" license, and development of Fortran applications which use coarrays across a cluster requires an Intel Cluster Studio XE license.

The support is one year, which entitles you to any new updates and versions released during the support term. You may continue to use an installed version indefinitely.

A single user license is for a single named user. Such a license does not allow you to make the product available to others. This is the way we have always defined this license. If you want to make the compiler available to other users, we offer a "floating license" as an alternative. For more information see Intel® Software Development Products End User License Agreement.

Retired 12/31/2016

Thanks for the response.

I have another follow up question. Does the very useful WinDiff tool work on windows 7 and is it still packaged with Intel Visual Fortran, and, if so, does it come with all or just some versions (composer, studio etc)?


WinDiff works, and is in current versions of Visual Studio. I think it is included with the Visual Studio Shell bundled with Intel Visual Fortran but am not certain of that. It is independent of the compiler.

Retired 12/31/2016

Can anyone confirm whether WinDiff is included in the Visual Studio Shell which is bundled with Intel Visual Fortran and/or whether WiffDiff is available separately (and reasonably cheaply or freely) from Microsoft? This may well influence which version we purchase and whether we buy the full Microsoft Visual Studio.

Many thanks


Windiff comes with the SDK that you can download form Microsoft. I am not 100% sure  but I had a look in the VS 2010 shell compoents and cannot see it anywhere 

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