It's finally here! The WinFX November CTP (Community Technology Preview) is the latest version of the WinFX technologies and is now available for download/installation. Included in this version is the WinFX Runtime Components (RTC), Windows SDK and Visual Studio 2005 Extensions for WinFX.

Here are the links to the bits (should be installed in this order!) as well as some Q&A regarding this release:


Questions and Answers

Q: Will the November CTP work on Windows Vista?
A: No. The WinFX RTC and Windows SDK do not work with previous releases of Windows Vista. Therefore, you must install the November CTP on either Windows XP SP2 or Windows Server 2003.

Q: When will a compatible version of Windows Vista be available?
A: The Windows Vista team is currently working on this. The next CTP will have a full compliment of bits such that all the components work together.

Q: Why release WinFX then if it won't run on Windows Vista?
A: This was something that was decided after quite a bit of discussion. Basically it came down to the following scenario. We didn't want to post Windows Vista right now as that team is currently working on its next CTP. However, many people who are using WinFX on other operating systems - such as Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 - cannot currently use the previous WinFX CTP with the released version of Visual Studio 2005. Therefore, in order to allow those people to continue working with WinFX, it was decided to release what was ready.

Q: Can I run the November CTP with Visual Studio 2005 beta?
A: No. Both Visual Studio 2005 and the WinFX (included in the Windows SDK) are reliant on the .NET Framework. As the November CTP uses the release version of the .NET Framework, you need to use a compatible version of Visual Studio 2005 - which is the release version (either the full-purchase edition or the Express Edition)

Q: Where's the WinFX SDK?
A: The Windows SDK now includes all the content previously in the WinFX SDK and Longhorn Platform SDK.

Q: Can I write native Windows SDK code?
A: Not at this time. The November CTP only supports writing managed code. The next CTP will support both unmanaged (native) and managed code development.

Q: What if I only want to execute WinFX applications?
A: In that case, you only need to install the WinFX RTC, which are the runtime distributables that support WinFX applications.

Q: Do I need the Visual Studio 2005 Extensions for WinFX?
A: These are optional and are simply enhancements to the Visual Studio 2005 IDE - such as new Custom Application Wizards - to make creating WinFX applications easier.