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Visual Studio allows us to use different target framework of the project that we are developing. This give us the opportunity to use the Mono Framework via Visual Studio. Hence, we can target the Linux platform without leaving the Visual Studio Environment.

What do you need?
Mono for Windows, Gtk#, and XSP
(Or pick another version of mono from the archives at http://download.mono-project.com/archive/)

Open an elevated Command Prompt and execute the following commands in this order:

cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\Reference Assemblies\Microsoft\Framework\.NETFramework\v4.0\Profile"
mklink /d Mono "C:\Program Files (x86)\Mono-2.10.9\lib\mono\4.0"
cd Mono
mkdir RedistList
cd RedistList
notepad FrameworkList.xml

Notepad opens and ask you if you would like to make a new file, you can confirm this. Paste the following text into this new file and save the file:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<FileList ToolsVersion="4.0" RuntimeVersion="4.0" Name="Mono 2.10.9 Profile" Redist="Mono_2.10.9">
</FileList>

Now you have to start regedit from the Command Prompt and add the following registry key to your register:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\.NETFramework\v4.0.30319\SKUs\.NETFramework,Version=v4.0,Profile=Mono

Add the folowing key on a 64-bits Windows (you also have to add the key above!):

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\.NETFramework\v4.0.30319\SKUs\.NETFramework,Version=v4.0,Profile=Mono

Now you can start the Visual Studio and change the target framework of your project via the properties panel:

Source: Nathan Evans