Pat's Windows Development Blog

Tips for Developers about Windows Development and Application Compatibility

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  • Blog Post: If I’m an Administrator, Why Do I Get Access Denied?

    User Account Control (UAC) can seem mysterious. After all, if I’m a member of the Administrators group, shouldn’t I have access to everything? If you’re a developer, you’ll run into a UAC issue sooner or later. In this post, I’ll cover the basics that every developer should...
  • Blog Post: Why does a High DPI Setting Make My Application Look Fuzzy and Have Clipped Text?

    If you increase your DPI setting in Windows 7 (or Vista), you may notice your application doesn’t look the way you intended. What’s the Big Deal? You may say, “Nobody changes the default DPI, right?” Well, Windows 7 might. Windows 7 may increase the default DPI setting based on the resolution the...
  • Blog Post: Q: Why Doesn’t Drag-and-Drop work when my Application is Running Elevated? – A: Mandatory Integrity Control and UIPI

    If you run notepad elevated (Right click | Run as Administrator), and you try and drag-and-drop a file from Windows Explorer, nothing happens. It looks like it is going to work because the pointer icon changes but the file doesn’t open. Weird, huh? What’s Going On? In the traditional NT Security...
  • Blog Post: Common Application Installer Issues on Windows 7 (and Vista)

    There are some very common application installer issues developers run into due to UAC .  Most of the issues are easy to fix.  I’ll cover the most common issues in this post. Per Machine Installers Need Admin Privileges Unless you have a ClickOnce installer, your installer probably installs...
  • Blog Post: Common Problems with Checking OS Versions in Code

    When a new OS is released, a high percentage of applications don’t install or don’t run because they check for a specific OS version. The application or installer checks for a specific version number and exits if it isn’t what is expected. I’ve heard claims of up to 50% of incompatibility...
  • Blog Post: Common Issues with 32-bit Applications Failing on 64-bit

    In most cases, 32-bit applications execute with no issues on 64-bit thanks to WOW64 . However, there are a few cases that you may need to make modifications to your application in order for it to work on 64-bit. I’ll cover the common issues and possible solutions in this post. 64-bit OS Basics...
  • Blog Post: Tales of Application Compatibility Weirdness – Demystifying UAC Virtualization

    We had a customer in the lab recently and they were quite certain their application was Windows 7 ready. To their surprise, it had several issues in certain situations.  In this post, I’ll talk about one of the situations they encountered as well as other stumbling blocks you might run into with...
  • Blog Post: Answers to Several Application Manifest Mysteries and Questions

    Recently, someone asked me this question in e-mail -- “How do I get my application to run elevated when someone launches it?” Instinctively, I responded with a “You need to manifest it.” I got a nice long e-mail in return. ;-) I quickly realized that application manifests appear simple but are quite...
  • Blog Post: Windows 7 Application Compatibility Testing Guidance document

    If you have an existing application, you may be wondering if it’s going to work on Windows 7.  If it works on Vista, you have a good shot at it working on Windows 7. As a developer or a tester, you may be wondering if you have tested your application to uncover potential issues on the new OS. We...
  • Blog Post: Displaying the UAC consent dialog on the desktop

    I had written a draft of this post a while ago (last year).  I use Live Writer as my blog editor.  Between Live Writer and Intellimirror ,this draft has survived multiple reloads of interim builds of Windows 7.  So, I think in some ways, it deserves to be resurrected and posted. :-) ...
  • Blog Post: Developing Compatible Applications for Windows 7 webcast

    I know I could talk all day about application compatibility topics and not cover everything that can be discussed. Here’s a one hour webcast I did that focuses on the top issues and most confusing topics for Application Compatibility. I do some of my favorite demos showing UAC architecture, data redirection...
  • Blog Post: Registering ATL Performance Counters on Vista and Server 2008

    If you use the ATL Server performance counter libraries, you may run into a problem on Vista and WS08. The ATL libraries don't play well with the updates to Windows Resource Protection. WRP enforces restrictions on the registry to prevent corruption of performance counters. ATL breaks these rules and...
  • Blog Post: Where do I start?

    When you work on a given subject for a while, you tend to jump right in and forget to start at the beginning. In the Application Compatibility lab, we kick off the week with an overview presentation and cover the basics of common compatibility issues. Those topics are probably a good place to start with...
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