Deploying and debugging your Windows Phone 7 applications on a device requires Zune client software to be running. However, Zune client software blocks access to your local media database making it impossible to debug anything using media APIs. This may include photo choosers and launchers, XNA and Silverlight playback of media elements.
The solution is simple, with the newly released Windows Phone Developer Tools October 2010 Update, a new tool WPConnect is provided to circumvent this issue. Download and install the tools update. Once done you can connect your device, close Zune software and launch WPConnect.exe from the installation directory. Normally this is “%ProgramFiles%\Microsoft SDKs\Windows Phone\v7.0\Tools\WPConnect”. More details on MSDN: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg180729(v=VS.92).aspx
Note: this applies to developers using an unlocked Windows Phone device. Unlocking your phone requires registration in the AppHub.
‘Quick tip’ posts are short, useful posts pointing to content and tricks that might otherwise go lost in a typical 140 chars on Twitterverse.
Well, I hope you are because Windows Phone 7 is here!
Yesterday was the official announcement around the commercial availability of Windows Phone 7 devices in Europe, Asia and United States. Starting with the press conference in New York where Steve Ballmer introduced the phone, you can watch the full session on demand here. Notice how Joe Belfiore walks you through the usage of the phone, making it a very personal experience. I highly recommend watching Joe’s demo.
The phone will be in stores starting October 21st 2010, with four different devices available and the major operators selling these. In addition to a press conference we also organized an evening launch event where bloggers, social media and community was invited to. Check out the reports through the Twitter tag #wp7be.
Four phones by launch on October 21st 2010
Internationally there will nine different phones launched, for Belgium we will have four phone to start with LG Optimus 7, Samsung Omnia 7, HTC 7 Mozart and HTC 7 Trophy.
Engadget has some great WP7 coverage and a handset spec comparison.
Developing for Windows Phone 7 is done in .NET: either .NET in the form of Silverlight for apps, or in the form of XNA for developing games mainly. Tooling is free, and it contains a special version of Visual Studio, Expression Blend and a full Phone emulator. Download the tools for free.
To get started with Windows Phone 7 development we have 12+ hours of content for you: Windows Phone 7 Jump Start training on-demand.
To finish off, check out the first Windows Phone 7 commercial: Really?.
The Developer Toolbar in Internet Explorer 9 Beta, which you can call by pressing F12, allows you to set the current page’s Document and Browser modes. Useful when having issues with some older sites, but also when checking rendering for your own site with different settings.
Microsoft Professional Developers Conference 2010 is almost here: next Thursday 28th and Friday 29th October the conference is taking place in Redmond at the Microsoft campus. While only a select group of people has had the chance to get a ticket to personally attend, don’t let this assume you’ll miss any of it.
PDC 2010 will be fully live streamed online and also made available on-demand within 24 hours.
Attending the local streaming event in Belgium: on Thursday 28th of October 2010 we are doing a live streaming event at Microsoft offices together with VISUG and AZUG user groups. There are just a few seats left so don’t hesitate to register very quickly if you would like to join us. Register before Wednesday 27th and join us.
Attending online: I know some people will stay up late at night to follow as much as possible through the live streaming. You may want to watch part of it live in the evening time in Belgium and leave the rest for on-demand viewing.
The main themes you can expect for this year’s event are Cloud (cloud! cloud!), client technologies including phone, tools and frameworks. Expect very deep technical content, level 400 might go through the roof
Steve Ballmer and Bob Muglia will be opening this year’s PDC, watch it live here: http://player.microsoftpdc.com/Session/6f853fa2-06f6-45e5-ac25-18c31cc4ba32?refid=05301.
Some highlights, randomly chosen sessions that caught my attention
So much more super interesting content, check out the full session listing. I think I will set my out of office for the following week to take it all in! I wish ;-)
REMIX10 Belgium took place at the end of September 2010 in De Montil, Affligem. We managed to bring together a great combination of Microsoft Corp speakers as well as some local community speakers. As traditionally with REMIX events, two content tracks were available: Web Developer and User Experience.
Today, all the content from the recorded sessions is available online. But there’s more: we have also done short interviews with all the speakers and participants of the opening keynote. So you can now consume the content in two ways.
1. Watch the “10 minute conference” format
In this “10 minute conference” format you can take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour or such and review what every speaker has to say about their session. If you don’t have a lot of time this might help you decide which sessions you want to further dig into.
2. Watch the full conference
You want the full experience? On the full conference page you can find every session’s video, along with the PowerPoint slide deck, a getting started guide and some of them linking to the full demo download. The videos link to a Channel9 page, from where you can view the video online or download it to your iPod, Zune or whatever other player you want to use. An MP3 version is also available.
Learn more about Windows Phone 7 design principles, Expression Blend 4, Internet Explorer 9 Beta and HTML5, Silverlight 4, Windows Azure Platform, IIS, WebMatrix and Umbraco.
IE9 Platform Previews have been out since March 2010, with a new version hitting the site every eight weeks more or less. Even after the release of Internet Explorer 9 Beta, in September 2010, this is still no different. The platform previews deliver new rendering updates so they are the most up to date version of implemented rendering engine functionalities. Platform previews are not a full browser with Back button and such. However, very useful for testing site rendering post-beta.
At PDC 2010 Keynote, the latest version of the Platform Preview, version 6 was announced.
As a developer, this is a great opportunity to get your sites ready for Internet Explorer 9:
Download Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview 6.
Yesterday WCF RIA Services V1.0 SP1 Beta along with WCF RIA Services October toolkit were released. Notable updates, read the details on the blog post below:
You can download the new release at http://silverlight.net/riaservices. Make sure you follow the instructions as outlined by Deepesh.
For the third year in a row the Belgian SQL Server User Group is organizing SQL Server Day, together with Microsoft and their partners. This year the event takes place on Thursday December 2nd 2010, at the San Marco Village near Antwerp.
The event will cover topics like SQL Azure, SQL Server 2008 R2 and the Microsoft Business Intelligence platform. Keynote speaker is none the less than Donald Farmer himself! Next to Donald you will have a chance to see Chris Webb, Nico Jacobs, Wesley Backelant, Dirk Gubbels, Karel Coenye, Nico Verbaenen, Werner Geuens and Thomas Kejser.
Register for free at http://www.sqlserverday.be/
Silverlight Media Framework (SMF) is an open source framework that allows developers to build great custom media players for IIS Smooth Streaming delivery. SMF has been around for some time and now with version 2.2 the download provides full support implementing high-end video experiences for Windows Phone 7 applications.
SMF is built on a proven code base with dozens of leading Smooth Streaming deployments, including Wimbledon, UEFA Super Cup on Canal+, Roland Garros and the Tour de France on France Télévisions and many others and by providing developers with source code they can more easily build these experiences for their deployments. Key features in the framework include DVR, rewind, alternate language tracks, in-stream data feeds and analytics tracking. The SMF is designed for future third-party extensibility and component modularity, as well as support for other media delivery scenarios beyond Smooth Streaming.
And yes, it’s still all free.
What’s new in version 2.2:
You can download and learn more at the CodePlex page for Silverlight Media Framework (http://smf.codeplex.com/).
Thanks for all who attended my sessions during TechEd Africa in Durban this past week. In this post you can access my slides and some links directly, related to the content of my “Designing and developing a Windows Phone 7 Silverlight Application End-to-End”. I do want to mention that presenting at the event was a whole experience since it was also my first visit to the African continent. I much enjoyed the conference, the keynotes, networking with delegates and colleagues and let’s not forget the weather. Visiting uShaka Marine World for the closing party was also very much worth mentioning, I think I could watch those sharks for hours.
Coming back to the sessions, I must correctly place the content of the session. The content has not been produced by myself only, it’s actually the joint work of a friend and colleague of mine, Isabel Gomez. Isabel and I did the main content of the session and end to end demo for an internal event, and now I had the opportunity to adapt the content and present two sessions at TechEd Africa.
Slides can be found further below, integrated from SlideShare.
Top links and resources
Mobility Smackdown session I also participated in the smackdown session together with Nkosi Kumalo and John Press. My part was mainly demos of apps from the marketplace. A few notable resources:
The ProgressBar control available in Windows Phone 7 has a poor performance when in ‘indeterminate’ state. Jeff Wilcox, a developer on the Silverlight team has created a new template you can apply to the built-in control: the PerformanceProgressBar. This new template does not change the control’s usage but makes it much more performing by offloading from the UI thread and making use of the Compositor thread for all animations.
Implementing the new template is really easy, just add the provided new class, add the new template to App.xaml and apply the style when using ProgressBar. All details can be found in Jeff’s post “The high performance ProgressBar for Windows Phone (“PerformanceProgressBar”)”, and follow-up post “Windows Phone performance progress bar update: part 2, remember to turn IsIndeterminate off when not needed!”.