Is there any way to sync my Visual Studio Code settings between instances?

Visual Studio-CodeSettings

Visual Studio-Code Problem Overview

I'd like to be able to sync my VS Code user settings (File > Preferences > User Settings) to the cloud somehow so I can easily share them between multiple installations, as in Windows 10 and Visual Studio.

Is there a supported way of doing this? Direct support in Code would be great, but otherwise being able to move my settings.json location to a Dropbox or OneDrive folder would work too.

I'm looking specifically for a way of doing this automatically and silently. Manually exporting/importing is too cumbersome and isn't what I'm looking for.

Update: this is now a built-in feature in VS Code.

Visual Studio-Code Solutions

Solution 1 - Visual Studio-Code

I have developed an extension that will sync all your Visual Studio Code Settings across multiple instances.

Key Features

  1. Use your GitHub account token.
  2. Easy to Upload and Download on one click.
  3. Saves all settings and snippets files.
  4. Upload Key : Shift + Alt + u
  5. Download Key : Shift + Alt + d
  6. Type Sync In Order to View all sync options

It Sync

  • Settings File
  • Keybinding File
  • Launch File
  • Snippets Folder
  • VSCode Extensions

Detail Documentation Source

VSCode - Settings Sync blog post

Download here : VS Code - Settings Sync - Extention

Solution 2 - Visual Studio-Code

You can make a hard link from the directory containing user settings to your sync directory of applications such as Dropbox or OneDrive.

For example, on windows, the user settings are located in %APPDATA%\Code\User, so you could type:

mklink /H /J X:\Your\Sync\Dir %APPDATA%\Code\User

on your computers with Visual Studio Code to achieve the synchronization.

Then, on another computer, you may delete the %APPDATA%\Code\User folder, and type:

mklink /H /J %APPDATA%\Code\User X:\Your\Sync\Dir

to retrieve the synchronized settings.

Solution 3 - Visual Studio-Code

Aha, you can try my VSCode extension: Syncing.

Hoping you'll like it. :)

A Quick Guide
  1. Install Syncing:

  2. Get your own GitHub Personal Access Token:

    1. Login to your GitHub Settings page.

      login to settings page

    2. Select Personal access tokens tab and click Generate new token.

      generate new token

    3. Select gist and click Generate token.

      allow gist

    4. Copy and backup your token.

      copy and backup token

  3. Sync your settings:

    Syncing will ask for necessary information for the first time and save for later use.

    1. Upload:

      1. Type upload in VSCode Command Palette.

      2. Enter your GitHub Personal Access Token.

      3. Enter your Gist ID (or leave it blank to create automatically).

      4. Done!

      5. After uploading, you can find your settings and the corresponding Gist ID in your GitHub Gist.

        settings and gist

    2. Download:

      1. Type download in VSCode Command Palette.

      2. Enter your GitHub Personal Access Token (or leave it blank if you want to download from a public Gist)

      3. Enter your Gist ID (or a public Gist ID).

      4. Done!

Solution 4 - Visual Studio-Code

In v1.48:

> ## Preview features > > Preview features are not ready for release but are functional enough > to use. We welcome your early feedback while they are under > development. > > ### Settings Sync > > Settings Sync is now available for preview in the stable release . > Refer to the user guide > for more information & FAQs. > > Feature is now called Settings Sync also in the product. All of > its references & settings are renamed to be aligned.

Settings Sync

Also see "Manual merge" and syncing between Insiders and Stable at

In v1.45 it looks like you will be able to login to the built-in Settings Sync via github, see (Support GitHub logins in settings sync). And the v1.45 Release Notes.

In v1.43 as a preview feature (so in the Insiders' Build only) is settings sync. See

> Settings Sync > We have been working the last couple of months to support synchronizing VS Code settings, extensions, and keyboard shortcuts across machines (popular feature request #2743). In this milestone, we are happy to announce that this feature is ready for preview from our next 1.44.0-insider release. You can now have your customizations synchronized in all your VS Code installs across all your machines. You can also bootstrap VS Code with your personal customizations on a fresh machine with minimal effort. Following video demonstrates this:

> > Supports detecting conflicts in settings and keybindings while > synchronizing. Conflicts are shown using the diff editor with incoming > (cloud) changes on the left side and local changes on the right side. > You can resolve the conflicts by editing in the right side editor and > merge the changes using the actions provided in the editor.

Supported Features

> Currently Settings, Keyboard Shortcuts, Extensions, and the Display > Language are synchronized but we are planning to add more. You can > review our list of proposed Setting Sync > features. > > Machine settings (with machine or machine-overridable scopes) are not > synchronized by default. You can also add or remove settings you want > to this list from settings editor or using the setting > sync.ignoredSettings. > > Keyboard Shortcuts are synchronized per platform by default. If your > keyboard shortcuts are platform agnostic then, you can synchronize > them across platforms by disabling the setting > sync.keybindingsPerPlatform. > > All built-in and installed extensions are synchronized along with > their global enablement state. You can skip synchronizing an > extension, from extensions view or using the setting > sync.ignoredExtensions. > > Settings Sync activity can be monitored in the Log (Sync) output > view. All local customizations are backed up for last 30 days (atleast > 10) in the disk whenever they are changed during synchronization. You > can use the command Sync: Open Local Backups Folder to go the > backups location and retain your old customizations.

(and a few gifs at the release note link)

Note that is working through your Microsoft account, not github (until v1.45 - see top):

> Settings Sync uses a Microsoft account to store your VS Code customizations for synchronization and therefore you would need an > account to use this. Refer to the Settings Sync > documentation for more > information and help.

Also see for more on how to set up settings sync.

And a link to v1.44 info on Settings Sync:

Solution 5 - Visual Studio-Code

I did this on my Mac by copying VS Code's settings.json to my iCloud drive for automatic backup, and then creating a symbolic link.

  1. Copy settings.json from VS code settings directory $HOME/Library/Application Support/Code/User/settings.json to your backup location
  2. Backup the old settings.json by renaming to settings-old.json
  3. In the terminal, cd to VS code setting dir: cd ~/Library/Application\ Support/Code/User/
  4. Create the symlink to your backed up file using command ln -sf path/to/backup/settings.json settings.json. Since I backed mine up to iCloud and renamed the file to vscode.settings.json, my command looked like this: ln -sf ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/com~apple~CloudDocs/vscode.settings.json settings.json
  5. Check that you can open up user preferences in VS Code

To use the backup on a different Mac, just repeat steps 2-5.

I also did this for extensions...

cd ~/.vscode/
mkdir ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/com~apple~CloudDocs/vscode/
cp -a extensions ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/com~apple~CloudDocs/vscode
mv extensions extensions-old
ln -sf ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/com~apple~CloudDocs/vscode/extensions extensions

Solution 6 - Visual Studio-Code

Another way of doing it would be to soft link your files, which can also be stored in a repository on GitHub. For example, on Mac OS let's say you have a directory called ~/dev/dotfiles/vscode. Let's say there are two files in there called settings.json and keybindings.json. You could soft link these files with:

ln -s ~/dev/dotfiles/vscode/keybindings.json ~/Library/Application\ Support/Code/User/keybindings.json
ln -s ~/dev/dotfiles/vscode/settings.json ~/Library/Application\ Support/Code/User/settings.json

If you are using Windows or Linux the path to the respective settings directories can be found at

Solution 7 - Visual Studio-Code

I place my settings.json in a configuration file that I sync with git (though Dropbox would also work) and use a Python script to symlink it to the correct location for each platform so updating it from the settings menu syncs across my machines. Creating symlinks requires admin privileges on Windows.

import os
import platform

# Find the settings file in the same directory as this script
SCRIPT_DIR = os.path.dirname(os.path.realpath(__file__))
VS_SETTINGS_SRC_PATH = os.path.join(SCRIPT_DIR, 'settings.json')

if platform.system() == 'Windows':
    VS_SETTINGS_DST_PATH = os.path.expandvars(r"%APPDATA%\Code\User\settings.json")
elif platform.system() == "Darwin":
    VS_SETTINGS_DST_PATH = os.path.expandvars(r"$HOME/Library/Application Support/Code/User/settings.json")
elif platform.system() == "Linux":
    raise NotImplementedError()
    raise NotImplementedError()

# On Windows, there might be a symlink pointing to a different file
# Always remove symlinks
if os.path.islink(VS_SETTINGS_DST_PATH):

choice = input('symlink %r -> %r ? (y/n) ' % (VS_SETTINGS_SRC_PATH, VS_SETTINGS_DST_PATH))
if choice == 'y':

Solution 8 - Visual Studio-Code

User Settings

There is currently no automatic synchronization for user settings available in Visual Studio Code. On Windows the user settings are located in %APPDATA%\Code\User\settings.json. You could save a copy of that file on OneDrive or Dropbox and move it on all your machines to the user settings folder. But this still includes manual steps on each machine every time you change the configuration.

You can suggest an automatic synchronization of settings here:

Workspace Settings

Add the .vscode folder of your workspace to the version control system (Git/SVN etc). When you checkout the code from the repository you will automatically get the VS Code workspace settings.

Solution 9 - Visual Studio-Code

This is finally a built-in feature: see Settings Sync in Visual Studio Code.

Solution 10 - Visual Studio-Code

Use workspace-settings instead of user-settings.


All content for this solution is sourced from the original question on Stackoverflow.

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Content TypeOriginal AuthorOriginal Content on Stackoverflow
QuestionMark WhitakerView Question on Stackoverflow
Solution 1 - Visual Studio-CodeShan KhanView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 2 - Visual Studio-CodeMr. ReeView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 3 - Visual Studio-CodeNonoroazoroView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 4 - Visual Studio-CodeMarkView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 5 - Visual Studio-CodeChris FeistView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 6 - Visual Studio-CodeDavidView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 7 - Visual Studio-CodeBenView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 8 - Visual Studio-CodeWosiView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 9 - Visual Studio-CodeMark WhitakerView Answer on Stackoverflow
Solution 10 - Visual Studio-CodeColacXView Answer on Stackoverflow