Windows 8 and the Windows Phone SDK

Windows 8 and the Windows Phone SDK

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With the exciting announcement last week of the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, developers have installed Win 8 and are asking about support for the Windows Phone SDK on the preview release. I thought it was worth posting on the topic to share our plans for Windows 8 and Visual Studio “11” support.

The Windows Phone SDK and Windows 8 Consumer Preview

We know many of our software developers are excited and eager to get started using the consumer preview on a daily basis, but Windows 8 is still a preview release, which means that there are going to be instances of software incompatibility. One of these incompatibilities is unfortunately with the current Windows Phone SDK. The good news is we are working to address these issues and should have more information for you in the coming weeks.

There are three issues with running the Windows Phone SDK on the Windows 8 Consumer Preview:

  • XNA Game Studio. On an attempt at installing the Windows Phone SDK, the user will receive error messages with regard to components of the XNA tool chain. These components will fail to install on Windows 8; the workaround for this has been blogged about by Aaron Stebner.
  • Windows Phone Emulator. Windows 8 cannot currently run the Windows Phone emulator, which will make it very difficult to debug your code. There are two issues in addition to the simple fact that the emulator does not run on Windows 8, having to do with specific emulator functionality.
  • .NET 3.5. Capability.exe and slsvcutil.exe will not run on Win 8 unless you separately install .NET 3.5.

The Windows Phone SDK and Visual Studio “11” Beta

Many folks have also noticed that the new preview release of next version of Visual Studio (the "Visual Studio 11 Beta", available here) does not include support for developing Windows Phone applications. Rest assured, there absolutely will be support for building Windows Phone applications with the next version of Visual Studio by the time it RTMs. Prior to that, per the first point above, we will be enabling the Windows Phone SDK 7.1 on Windows 8 in the coming months.

Windows 8 is the culmination of many years of work at Microsoft across many different divisions, (including Windows Phone), to redefine how people interact with computing devices. We are hard at work ensuring that we deliver a cohesive and comprehensive application development story with Visual Studio that enables you to leverage your knowledge and skills to build applications for Windows and for Windows Phone, in as seamless a manner as possible. We hope you enjoy where we are going with this.

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  • arWard
    1 Posts

    Everyone complaining about the start menu being gone should use Windows 8 for a week.  You'll get used to it - I promise! :)  As for the charms menu, just hit Windows Key + C and you're right there.  As for the Windows Phone 8 SDK, I really can't wait! About to release a Win Phone app for the company I work for, but going to hold off for WP8 SDK.

  • I really love when people complain about the Windows 8 Style Start Menu. Think of it as a DESKTOP not a Start Menu. Most people (if not all) have shortcuts on their current Desktop, this is how MOST people access their Programs. All the Start Menu is, is a glorified Desktop with a Large-scale Start Menu.

    However, still want the list-look like the Start menu provides? Well, you can get something like it by clicking "Search" and all the icons line up and certainly easier to view.

    As for the guy who came up with you need to be in "Metro" to shut down?

    In pre-Windows 8 you do: Bring your mouse to the Start Button, Click Start>Shut Down...

    In Windows 8 you do: Bring your mouse to the lower right corner (aka charms), click Settings>Power...

    Both ARE a 2-Step Process... That is so difficult? If so, you should be fired, you're obviously not a good technologist nor able to adapt to the latest in technology nor how to think for your Eu's.

    As for my qualifications besides being a multi-platform developer, hardware developer for digital clothing, and I.T. Prof, Security Analyst, Computer Forensics Investigator, and the rest of it doesn't matter. Just means I can see easily a 11K Workstation Network any given Month but actually deal with ensuring the EU of all these machines get an update, get a small note from me stating anything new, what not to do or what to look for, restrictions added, sites blocked, USB UnGum Codes (to permit USB Launching), and all of this must be idiot proof.

    I don't get paid to be scared how these people will be upset, I get paid to figure out how to explain and show how NOT to have as many complaints or issues as possible and result in less upset patrons. I recommend you do the same for your end-users because this is whats coming or wait till Windows 9 and maybe something else will exist?

    Please know I am not trying to be harsh but it just bugs me when I see people like yourself slam something that we haven't even seen the end result (RTM, unless MSDN Member). I do wish you the best of luck and if it's such an issue, make sure of it by setting up a demo computer and let your Eu's try it out first and if not? Don't deploy.



  • nitro52
    28 Posts

    @DjiXas If they did booting would take a bit of a performance hit. At the moment the Desktop apps don't start until the first time you load the desktop. Although if u wanted this as a default then i guess this would have to be done at some point.

  • DjiXas
    46 Posts

    Please, for the love of everything, allow us to boot to desktop by default with the Windows 7 like start menu.

    It's still not too late, guys

  • Thanks gianni.rg. I don't feel like setting up x86 installation at this point so maybe I'll just wait.

  • ringi
    5 Posts

    And I was hoping this was the post to detail a common API for Metro on Windows Phone and Windows 8!

    (The iTouch and iPad are a single platform, so way can’t Windows Tablet and Windows Phone me a single platform?)

  • @hypernova @gianni.rg i've read in other places that it works for Win8 x86 but not for x64.

  • @Hypernova: yes, it's working on my machine. I've tried on Win8 Consumer Preview 32bit. See my blog for details.

  • @gianni.rg Does that really work? I did try that in developer preview and it BSOD'ed my machine every time. Tried that on two completely different computers too.

  • @jjbowles

    Point at bottom right corner, click. This is already available in Wiindows 7 and Windows 8.

    @Larry Lieberman

    Any change of releasing a new version of Zune or some similar application for us WP users to sync our phones? The current release of Zune requires some stuff that is based on outdated .NET components.

  • There is a workaround to use Windows Phone Emulator in Windows 8 Consumer Preview: set Microsoft XDE tool to be launched with "Windows 7" compatibility.

  • I wish you guys the best, but the powering off issue scares me.  Do you really need us to tell you how annoying it is to shut the pc off?  How can a group of so many smart people be so blind?  Create a new position called "common sense"   Fill it with an average joe and when your team starts talking about stuff like how many hops you have to jump through just to shut down, "common sense" can smack them, then show them an iPad, and get them back on the right track.

  • Why all the hassle about Metro. It really is just fine after you get the whole idea right. Yes, it is made with tablets in mind, but the Metro start screen is nothing but a richer Start menu running full-screen. Using keyboard shortcuts really does wonders. Who ever actually clicked Start menu items anyway? Since Windows Vista you just push WIN key and start typing, eventually push a few arrow strokes and the return key - voila!

  • @jjbowles: thank you for your passionate feedback re: Win 8; i'll forward this to the Win 8 team.

  • nitro52
    28 Posts

    I'm happy that Win 8 is still a preview so there is limited support but VS 11 is no longer a Preview. its a beta. At this stage shouldn't it be getting finalised and ready to use? I was surprised not to see WP7 support when it has support for other sdk that you needed to install separately like light switch built in.

  • Thank you Larry for pulling this together!  For those of us who are "playing" with both frameworks, the Win8 Consumer Preview came out with the fanfare that was due, but we needed this cautionary note to be published to help mitigate any shoot-self-in-foot issues for those of us who tend to be early adopters.  Very excited to hear the upcoming announcements that will bring development for both platforms under the same roof.  Keep up the good work!

  • jjbowles
    43 Posts

    I have fallen in love with Windopws Phone. I am an iOS convert and find my Windows Phone to be the most fluid, intuituive, and stable phone abvailable. FANTASTIC!! I love the idea of code re-user across the Phone and Win8.

    While I think Metro is ok on the Win8 preview, it is no where nearly as usable as the Windows Phone. NOT EVEN CLOSE!! I want Metro on tablets but by no means do I want to be forced into Metro on traditional keyboard/mouse desktops.

    I am the manager of 7000 corporate desktops. The thought of deploying Windows to these users (ranging from office workers, to plant managers, to truck drivers) is frankly frightening. If I delivered a new operating system to these 7000 users (there are no touch computers) and it booted to Metro and the Start Menu was missing, I would be fired. These are general workers who rely on their computer as a tool to get a job done -- THEY ARE NOT TECH ENTHUSIASTS!!! Everyday users don't want change unless it is for the better. As far as I can tell, the changes in Win8 Desktop mode only add complexity and inefficiencies.

    Have you tired to shut down from the desktop? Intead of two clicks, it now takes a hover, a click to go back to metro, a logout (another two clicks), then another click for the shutdown menu, then a click to shutdown. WHAT IS THIS?!?!?!?!?!?

    Can you imagine me telling my users about the new start menu?

    OK Butch, the start menu icon has moved. And it's hidden. To see it, use your mouse and hover in the lower right corner. I know it's hard with two monitors but they tell me this is easier. Good! See those icons that appeared? Those are the magical charms. See, there it is, your start menu icon -- I know it's green. Go ahead and click on it. HAHAHAHAH!!! Fooled you, Butch. The start menu takes you to the Metro UI. You "normal" users are so dumb. Get back to work.

    Here's how to fix Win8 before it's too late:

    1. Give us the option to boot to the desktop. Make an option I can put in my image and make it available via GPO

    2. Give us a Win7 style (with natural evolution) Start Menu and Task Bar. My users live in the start menu. The start menu is part of our DNA as users.  My kids were born knowing whatthe Start Menu is.  I tell my users that if they get lost, look to the start menu,  Heck, we have even been conditioned to think it's natural to click START in order to Shut Down.

    3. Pin the trash can to the task bar by the clock. Why is it still on the desktop after all these years!?!?!?

    4. While we're dreaming, place the "Show desktop" icon on the left by the start button. It's nearly useless for normal users where it is. It is really cumbersome for users with two monitors.