[Any CPU/Release] SGEN(0,0): error : Could not load file or assembly '<YOUR ASSEMBLY>' or one of its dependencies. Strong name validation failed. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x8013141A)

I got that error from our build machine. It crashed wonderfully and would tell me that an assembly could not be loaded.

After 1 hour of search I finally found the problem.

We are in an environment where we delay-sign all of our assemblies and we are fully signing them on the build server as an "AfterDrop" event. Of course, we add a "Skip Verification" for the public key token we are using so that we can put them inside the GAC.

All of our projects (more than 20) we built exactly that way and I was seeing no way why it would happen. I then decided to look at what depended on this assembly. 1 project and it was the one that was failing inside the "Build Status".

I then found something that was used inside that specific project that was never used anywhere else. Somebody used the tab "Settings" to store application settings. Not a bad choice and a perfectly sound decision but... how can this make the build crash?

Well... it seems like using "Settings" force a call to SGEN.exe and SGEN.exe won't take any partially signed assemblies. It's then that I figured out that our build server didn't had any of those "Skip Verification".

After searching Google for some different terms, I found out under the "Build" tab a way to deactivate the call to SGEN. It's called "Generate Serialization Assembly". By default, the value is "Auto". After settings the value at "Off" for "Release" mode only, the build was fixed and we were happy campers.


Comment by Eric De C#

Good to know. Thank you for the information.

Eric De C#
Comment by Edouard B

It took us a while to resolve this error. Thanks, The weird thing is that some build servers seem less sensible than others !?!?

Edouard B
Comment by Forhad

Without making the Generate Serialization Assembly off, how can we build successfully? If we make Generate Serialization Assembly off, it will create run time error for serialization.