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Marlabs - Windows 8 Developer Preview


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Marlabs - Windows 8 Developer Preview

  1. 1. Technology Buzz Windows 8 provides an immersive user experi- ence. Clicking a tile will bring up the application in full screen mode, if it is a metro application. A classic desktop application opens in Desktop mode just like in Windows 7. From the desktop itself, you can start typing in the keyboard to find your applications, files, and other resources. Here is the search screen in Windows 8 that lets you find applications quite easily.Marlabs Windows 8 Developer By clicking the Desktop tile, you can also access the familiar Windows desktop to run your legacy Preview desktop applications from the start screen. Lot of new features Microsoft officially unveiled Windows 8 during Other than improvements in the Build conference. Dubbed "Windows the user experience that Reimagined," the OS is optimized for tablets makes it suitable for tablets, and touch devices. Featuring a new start screen Windows 8 is loaded with a with the Metro User Interface (which gained number of new features. popular with Windows Phone 7), Windows 8 Windows 8 is designed for supports new, touch-optimized Metro applica- low power tablets, and for tions as well as legacy desktop applications on very low energy utilization. the new WinRT runtime. The boot time in Windows 8 is significantly reduced, and There are several ways to get up and running you can really feel the with Windows 8. You can either install it on a difference. Windows 8 also virtual machine in Windows, or you can install it includes Hyper V support, on a VHD (Virtual Hard Drive). In my case, I which brings Hyper V to downloaded the ISO image of Developer desktops for the first time. Preview with tools (the 4+ GB one), extracted it Windows 8 also has a lot of to a USB drive and made the USB drive boot- new security features built able, booted from that, and then installed Win- in and enables tight integration with Windows dows 8 on a Local HD Partition on my home live services. machine. Now, it is dual bootable, with Win- dows 8 and Windows 7, and all is well. Charms in Windows 8 On touch devices, swiping from the right side of For End Users the screen brings up what is known as Charms, The new start screen in Windows 8 features live an implementation of the start bar On a no-n . tiles where users can see all applications listed. touch regular PC, Charms can be accessed by Users can also receive application notifications dragging the mouse to the bottom left corner of via the tiles. the screen. For Developers Windows 8 comes with WinRT a new object- , oriented, native/unmanaged API for developing ‘Metro’ applications for Windows. WinRT APIs are expected to replace the Win32 APIs. WinRT proj- ects types using metadata and is fully object- oriented. You can access WinRT directly from managed languages like C#.
  2. 2. Here are a couple of interesting reads about dows Live applications (Mail, Calendar Photos) are ,WinRT. now developed in Javascript/HTML5 and are native. You can connect multiple devices via Windows LiveDeveloping For WinRT Support for Wide Variety of HardwareWinRT is going to be ‘the runtime’ for Windows,across multiple devices such as PCs and Tablets. Hardware support for Windows 8 seems really awe-Windows Metro style applications can be devel- some. The demos feature Windows 8 running on aoped on top of WinRT in C#/VB.NET and XAML. variety of hardware devices. New and improved features include:XAML libraries with WinRT are now re-written inC++ and don’t have any .NET dependencies. • Multi monitor support with a start buttonWinRT XAML is a subset of the earlier XAML on all screens.libraries that was available with .NET but doesn’t • Hyper V Support for features like DataTriggers for now. Pres - • USB 3 Support.ently, you can access only a subset of the .NET • Hardware acceleration for all applications.BCL/Runtime from your C#/VB.NET + XAML • Malware detection in boot strapper .WinRT application. • A boot mode called “Cold Boot“ which is super fast. ConclusionThis doesn’t even support the .NET client profile;it is just the .NET core profile with access to aminimum set of .NET namespaces, combinedwith XAML namespaces now in Windows.UI. Theentire CLR will be loaded at the time of execu -tion, but you’ll be able to access only a subset ofthat. This is to ensure that you are running in asandboxed environment. CLR comes into play asa thin layer only for binding your calls to WinRTat run time. As WinRT is object oriented and hasmanaged data, you are in any case developingdirectly against WinRT .C++ and XAMLIf you are developing in C++ and XAML, yourcode will be compiled directly to an unmanagedlibrary. I assume this maximizes performance asyour code is directly compiled to native code.Javascript + HTML5From Javascript, you can directly call WinRT After installing Windows 8 and tinkering with it a bit,methods and in that sense it is native. The UI is I’m pretty much convinced that Microsoft has it right.rendered in HTML5. If your application is a They corrected the tablet part of the equation andJavascript + HTML5 application, it will run in a they got the entire Cloud <-> T ablet stack in place,‘shell’ that uses the same rendering engine as in with proper platforms and a nice set of developerIE10. tools. And without doubt, Windows 8 devices are going to be a serious competitor to Android andYou may continue to develop .NET/C#/Silverlight iOS/iPad in the tablets market space.applications for classic desktop scenarios. But ifyou need to develop Metro applications then you Here we go, Microsoft has officially entered the posthave to develop against WinRTWindows Live PC era!integration.The entire suite of Windows Live services isneatly integrated with Windows 8. All these Win -