Visual Studio Fix: Intellisense Not Popping Up or Not Working

(Update 4/27/2015 Added intellisense failure)

I was running the latest version of Visual Studio 2013 and ran into the intellisense not automatically popping up when I would type a period. Now I could hit CTRL-J (list members) and it would pop up the list which showed me that it worked and was not dead per se, but I still did not have it automatically popup after typing a period. I was also running Visual Studio 2012 on the same box and it did not have the same problem; intellisense popped the list up on the period. I thought, “This ends here” and researched it. Here is what made it auto pop for me:

  1. In quick launch type “Statement Completion” and choose the first one  “Text Editor -> All Languages -> General” to be taken to the options page for all languages.
  2. On the general options page in the “Statement Completion” section override whatever is in the boxes “Auto list members” and “Parameter Information” and makes those checked. Such as shown here:

Statement Completion


That brought back the auto popup for me in VS2013 and should for you as well.  This fix should work with any version of Visual Studio 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2013.

Still having problems? Then see Using Intellisense on MSDN for other troubleshooting suggestions.


It has been reported that ASP.Net users are experiencing a different kind of intellisense failure. If it is web related intellisense look into installing Visual Studio Web tools.  See

Announcing release of ASP.NET and Web Tools 2013.1 for Visual Studio 2012



  1. Ben says

    Thanks! Worked like a charm to get Intellisense back for me :)

  2. Erwin says

    Thanks! This made my day. I still don’t know why it got disabled in the first place…

  3. Jerry says

    In version 2012 you have to highlight the word even if it is on top of the list before you can hit enter. This is additional keystroke for the arrow key. I had 2008 and I just type a few letters then hit the space bar for autocomplete. 2012 sucks!

    • OmegaMan says

      @Jerry, I did a quick test in VS2013 by typing in a member and typing a literal `__abENT__lt;code__abENT__gt;__abENT__#95;__abENT__#95;abENT__abENT__#95;__abENT__#95;#46;__abENT__lt;__abENT__#8260;code__abENT__gt;` which brought up the selection list. The first item in the list provided by intellisense was already highlighted and could be selected by typing `__abENT__lt;code__abENT__gt;tab__abENT__lt;__abENT__#8260;code__abENT__gt;` or enter. I am not remembering in 2012, but I suggest you try it on another machine, or pull down 2013 and try it on that version. Something sounds off. GL

  4. Mike says

    Ha! Thanks. I should have Binged for this sooner.

  5. Angus says

    Thanks! This worked for me… The tick boxes were GREY with a tick but by clicking them twice they are now WHITE with a tick and now everything is working as expected.

  6. Joe says

    Perfect…fixed it!

  7. Samuel MacLachlan says

    This worked perfectly!! Thank you a million. It was driving me crazy with VS intellisense suddenly not working any more, and this fixed it.

  8. Andrew Morton says

    Angus, the grey checkbox with a tick in it indicates that some of the languages have it enabled and some don’t – it is not greyed out in the sense of not being able to change it.

  9. Baltazar Lucas says

    thanks! glad to find this blog.

  10. Jet says

    Thanks a lot! i supposed that those options where enabled by default.
    You made my day :).

  11. Kevin says


  12. chris says

    My intellisense in VS 2013 works fine in *NEW* web app projects… but for my main (semi-large) project it doesn’t work (or at least not all intellisense stuff is showing – particularly “Web Form” stuff like all the <asp:* controls.

    I've tried the many tricks listed like resetting vs settings, deleting suo files, fussing with options… nothing will get intellisense working normally in my main project! Any advice/tips?

  13. esam says

    thank you very much ,it worked. you are the best

  14. Mike says

    I already these settings ticked for all languages but my Intellisense constantly stops working – sometimes every hour or so. Lots of other people are experiencing this as well (I found lots of google hits) but there seems to be no real fix for it… I guess sometimes it just gets it’s knickers in a knot. I do not remember this problem happening in VS2005/2008/2010 so it seems to be something that has started happening in 2012 and now in 2013. CTRL-J is definitely helpful but I have given up on finding a solution now and I just restart my project if I really need the intellisense. Very frustrating though – wish MS would fix it.

  15. zameb says

    I have seen this solution before, but, in the first place, how was Intellisense working until now (for everyone, not just in my case) if those options were unchecked?
    Maybe some hidden stuff is causing the options to uncheck. On that case the solution will be only temporal or is working only on the effect.
    For all the others, the ones that this worked, probably they have never Intellisense.

  16. S Fadhel Ali says

    Thanks I couldn’t close this page without saying thanks a lot.

  17. Fred Peters says

    This fix also works for Visual Studio 2015 RTM. Thanks!

  18. Tim says

    *sniffle* YOU DA REAL MVP — this worked!

  19. Adrian says

    Good call!


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