November, 2013


  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Marmalade and Windows Phone


    Microsoft/Marmalade Windows Phone 8 Developer Day

    On the 19th of Nov we ran a dedicated day for developers building Windows Phone apps using Marmalade

    Free devcies

    Marmalade Windows Phone Offer

    Here are some video for those who could attend the event..

    Building your first Marmalade App for Windows Phone 8

    In this video you’re going to learn how to build a basic application using the Marmalade SDK, run it on desktop and then run it on a Windows Phone 8 device.

    Getting Started with Marmalade

    This tutorial provides the necessary steps for desktop and device set-up for Windows Phone 8 along with the required software to build on the device.  

    Hints and Tips for Windows Phone 8 when using Marmalade

    This tutorial explains what's in the Marmalade SDK along with tips to build your games and applications to be deployed on a wide range of tablets, phones, TV’s and desktop devices.  

    Deploying an Existing Marmalade Game to Windows Phone 8

    This tutorial shows how to take an existing Marmalade game from the SDK and how to package it up and deploy to Windows Phone 8.
  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Downloading Software from with Secure Download Manager


    Secure Download Manager

    The Secure Download Manager (SDM) is Kivuto's proprietary software program for managing the secure download of files from and institutions DreamSpark ELMS Stores.

    When you download software with the new SDM for the first time, you will be prompted to download and install the SDM on to your computer.

    You will need to install the SDM on your computer only once; all subsequent downloads will automatically launch the SDM. The SDM provides for secure, effective and efficient file downloads, especially for files that are too large for some browsers to download.

    Note: The DreamSpark SDM is only available for Windows.


     Windows XP    
     Windows Vista    
     Windows 7    
     Windows 8
        Windows 8.1
        Mac OSX running Windows via VM Image or BootCamp   

     IE 7, 8, 9, 10, 11    
     Firefox
     Chrome    

    How do I download and install the SDM?

    • To download and install the SDM, sign in to DreamSpark or  DreamSpark premium Institution WebStore using your Username and Password. 
    • Place the order for your software. When the order is completed, the Receipt page is displayed. 
    • On the Receipt page, click the Start Download button. The Secure Download Manager Installation window is displayed. 
    • Click the Download SDM button. The SDM starts downloading.


    Where can I find the SDM on my computer? 

    • Once the SDM is successfully downloaded to and installed on your computer, in Windows, the Shortcut to Secure Download Manager.exe icon is displayed on your desktop.
    • For the Mac, the SDM is found in the Application Folder. If you choose to download additional software from the WebStore, you do not need to re-download or re-install the Secure Download Manager unless you have removed it from your system. If you have removed it from your system, the WebStore will prompt you to install it again when you initiate a new download.

    How do I download my software? 

    • Once you have downloaded and installed the SDM, download the .SDX file for your order and then launch that .SDX file. A new window will open. To begin downloading your software, click the Start button. Note: The SDM can only process one order at a time. Do not attempt to start a second instance as it will be ignored.


    If you have any questions about the new Secure Download Manager contact Kivuto at    

    Further details on DreamSpark Secure Download Manager

    SDM FAQ's

    Getting Started with a ELMS Store

    Getting Started Guide -

    Tutorial Videos for setting up ELMS - Training Videos

    DreamSpark for Institutions - Microsoft DreamSpark Program

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    The world’s greatest startup – Career opportunities for Students



    I always get asked at any University or academic visit. How do I get a role at Microsoft?

    Here is an overview of the Microsoft programmes available.


    These are part time programmes to enhance your CV. These programmes are available to College and University Students in the UK

    - Microsoft Student Partner – Range of Technical roles from Windows Games Ambassadors specialising in Game Development to Student Partners specialising in Windows Phone or Windows 8 app development promoting Microsoft DreamSpark
    - Microsoft Windows Ambassadors - promoting Windows 8 amongst the UK student community

    Student Internships

    -  Global Projects & Personal Development Programme
    -  Opportunities in Finance, Software Engineering,  Journalism, Gaming, Marketing, HR and more
    -  £16000 salary + benefits
    -  Work in Reading, London, Edinburgh, Twycross or Guildford

    Download our brochure at

    Graduate Programme 

    - Global Training & Development Programme
    - Specialise in Sales, Technical, Project Management  & Business Consulting or Software Development
    - £34,700 starting salary + benefits
    -  Work in Reading or London

    To find out more and apply, visit 

    Download our brochure at

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Unity3D - Getting Started on Building/Porting to Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8


    UK's Largest Unity Porting Day

    Getting started with the basics for Unity

    The Unity Getting Started guides cover everything you need to know: configurations, SDKs, general considerations and first steps

    Windows Store

    Getting started on Windows Phone (663 KB)

    Windows Phone

    Getting started on Windows Store (720 KB)

    Porting to Windows tips

    Once you get the basics, read our porting tips that pinpoint what to consider when adjusting your code to target Windows Store and Windows Phone

    Windows Store

    Porting tips for Windows Phone (819 KB)

    Windows Phone

    Porting tips for Windows Store (813 KB)

    UK Unity Porting Lab

    Register here - UK: London Nov 29, 2013

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Storage Powered by the Cloud – FREE StorSimple Webinar 20th Nov 2013



    Many organisations in the UK Public Sector are looking to do more take cost out of their basic IT operations and increase efficiencies since the Comprehensive Spending Review as they try to do more with less. 

    All organisations are keeping more and more data both for regulatory purposes. Cloud integrated storage promises to provide the best of both commodity cloud cost and flexibility combined with on premise control and compliance requirements.

    Introducing StorSimple, a Microsoft Solution

    StorSimple is the leading vendor for cloud-integrated storage. StorSimple solutions combine primary storage, backup, archive, and disaster recovery, allowing you to optimize storage costs, data protection and service agility. With its unique cloud snapshot capability, StorSimple automatically protects and rapidly restores production data using Azure Storage.

    Join us for a strategy workshop, taking you and your team through the ways a hybrid cloud storage solution reduces total storage costs and improves data protection.

    Reduce storage infrastructure sprawl

    Reduce data management complexity

    Gain seamless and real-time scaling of primary storage through auto-tiering to Windows Azure

    Significantly improve and simplify data protection

    Realise up to 100x faster disaster recovery with thin restores

    StorSimple cloud-integrated storage combines primary storage, backup, archive and disaster recovery with cloud integration. And is the only cloud storage solution certified by both Microsoft and VMware.

    Cloud Storage Solution Webinar

    Time: 14:15 – 15:00

    Date: Wednesday, 20th Nov, 2013




    Search Event ID: 1032570230

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    DreamSpark FREE Software for all learners and educators



    What is DreamSpark? is a Microsoft Program that supports technical education by providing access to Microsoft software for learning, teaching and research purposes.

    DreamSpark is simple: it's all about giving students Microsoft professional-level developer and designer tools at no cost so that students can chase their dreams and create the next big breakthrough in technology - or just get a head start on their career.

    DreamSpark helps educators teach the latest technologies and experiment in research. Microsoft knows that to make learning more motivating, relevant, and engaging for today's students requires a diverse set of resources. DreamSpark gives educators the resources to ensure their classrooms always have the latest technologies to challenges, motivate, and keep students engaged in new ways.

    DreamSpark is also a subscription for Academic Institutions: it provides a cost-effective way to put Microsoft developer tools, platforms and servers in labs and classrooms, and on their students’ and faculty’s computers for learning and research purposes. It reduces lab costs and teaching budgets.


    How do I get DreamSpark Software?

    As a Student: simply create an account, verify your student status and download software through this website at no cost. If your school/university has a subscription, you can also get access to more software titles.

    Learn more 

    As an Educator: you can get access through your institution’s subscription. Talk to your school administration to get a DreamSpark subscription and order today!

    Learn more

    As an Academic Institution: order the subscription type that is right for you. DreamSpark Standard is for all types of institutions from primary to tertiary educations. DreamSpark Premium has a wider software catalog of over 500 products and is for qualifying technical departments only.

    Learn more

    Getting started.

    Simply go to and create a FREE Account today

    If your attending this years simply pop over to Hall 1.1 and see us on the #opendoors Microsoft and City and Guilds Stand to collect a verification code to get started as new user.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows 8 Pinned sites - make your web site look like a Windows 8 app


    One of the neat little feature of Windows 8 is the ability to pin Web Pages to the start screen through IE 11.

    Here a great example of the pinned wpcentral site on Windows 8


    This is what it looks like on my start screen as large tile


    Instructions for uses on how to use Pinned sites.
    1. Make sure IE11 is set as the default browser—at least to pin, you can always switch it later. To choose your default browser, just type in “default programs” on the Start screen and launch the settings.
    2. Launch IE11 in Windows 8 UI mode (not desktop) and head to
    3. Tap the Star icon (for favourites)
    4. Hit the Pin button
    5. Rename the Tile or just keep ‘WPCentral’
    6. Choose Tile size (you can always change it later)

    And that’s it! The tile should refresh with WPCentral direct news feed and depending on the size you chose, it will have a slightly different layout.

    Adding Pinned sites to your web page

    So you have seen this in action with WPCentral and now you can add this feature really simply to your site.

    To do this you can use the IE Pinned app builder tool at this will  refresh your site code so that the IE pinned app looks like a windows 8 app and appear on users start screen. 

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Getting to grips with the Cloud – FREE Azure Webinar Series for educators and researchers


    Free Windows Azure for Research webinar series

    The cloud is becoming more and more useful in education. There are stunning examples of academic research which are pushing the boundaries of data intensive science.

    Some of these great examples include the discovery of the Higgs boson at CERN and this year’s publication of the fifth assessment report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

    However today’s research challenges remains largely the same.

    1. More data

    2. More analysis

    3. Simply less time to do the work.

    So why use Windows Azure

    Cloud computing can really help educators and researchers resolve the issue of big data and focus on accelerating breakthroughs and insights.

    So why not learn more and attend our, three-part Windows Azure for Research webinar series starting 20 November.

    What is the Windows Azure Webinar Series?

    The seminars are one-hour, interactive online sessions will bring cloud computing to life, explaining what it is, why it is so useful, and how to use it for your research in practical ways.

    You can get involved and ask questions live during the sessions so simply register for the events below.

    Hands on with Windows Azure January 2014 Oxford

    Also, we’re bringing our Windows Azure for Research program to the UK.

    These session will include hands-on training on how to use Windows Azure to simplify their data-intensive work. These two-day courses and cover everything from Linux virtual machines, IPython, scaling out R and MATLAB calculations, cloud storage, sensor data processing, and, of course, big data processing.

    Sign up now to secure your place and get hands-on experience developing and deploying your research applications in the cloud:

    Azure Awards and Grants – FREE Access to Cloud Resources

    In addition to the trainings, we’re offering substantial allocations of Windows Azure storage and compute resources for selected proposals through the Windows Azure Research Awards Program. (Learn more about the awards.)

    If your interested in teaching Windows Azure to your courses then we offer Windows Azure Educator grants (Learn more about the grants)

    So who are using these services?

    We’re currently working with dozens of UK universities and research teams across and many European researchers from the British Library, STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, University College London, Sheffield Hallam University, Newcastle University and the University of St Andrews. We’re excited to have a range of projects, from bioinformatics and environmental science to image processing and Science 2.0.

    Please join the discussion on our Windows Azure for Research LinkedIn Group and for educators please join in the discussions on the UK Faculty Connection LinkedIn Group

    Learn more

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Installing XNA on Windows 8 with Visual Studio 2012


    Guest blog by Simon Grey Lecturer in Games Development Studies at the University of Hull


    XNA is a great framework for creating games, and we use it as a tool to motivate students to learn how to program whilst creating great games at extra-curricular events such as the three thing game. For us, a tools like XNA is an invaluable intrinsic motivator – inspiring students to want to learn to code, as opposed to being motivated because we said so, or because they will get better grades.

    According to the official documentation XNA requires Visual Studio 2010. Now, clearly it’s possible to install both Visual Studio 2010 and Visual Studio 2012 on the same machine, but that would have a big impact on the size of the image.

    To get around the limitation of our managed desktop Hard Drive capacity we would d rather not install both if we don’t have to, but if you try to install XNA on a machine that doesn’t include Visual Studio 2010 the installation will fail.

    However after some monitoring of the install process here is a nice walkthrough produced by the University of Hull of how to install XNA onto a machine with Visual Studio 2012. The University of Hull we are keen to provide students with as seamless an experience as possible when moving from working at home to working in university, with this in mind I Simon has developed the following blog post, so that students can use XNA at home with Visual Studio 2012 to allow them an easy transition to and from the machines at the University

    You’ll need to download this zip file which contains the entire XNA setup and the folders that you’ll need to copy yourself.

    1. Download the zip file and unzip it somewhere. You should see an executable called XNAGS40_setup.exe and a folder called XNA Game Studio 4.0
    2. Open a command line and navigate to the folder that contains XNAGS40_setup.exe – then run XNAGS40_setup.exe /x . You’ll be asked to enter a folder. It’s probably easiest if you create a new empty folder. This folder is temporary and can be deleted after you are done.
    3. Go to the temporary folder and run redists.msi
    4. Run the MSI at %ProgramFiles%\Microsoft XNA\XNA Game Studio\v4.0\Setup\XLiveRedist.msi
    5. Run the MSI at %ProgramFiles%\Microsoft XNA\XNA Game Studio\v4.0\Redist\XNA FX Redist\xnafx40_redist.msi
    6. Run the MSI at %ProgramFiles%\Microsoft XNA\XNA Game Studio\v4.0\Setup\xnaliveproxy.msi
    7. Run the MSI at %ProgramFiles%\Microsoft XNA\XNA Game Studio\v4.0\Setup\xnags_platform_tools.msi
    8. Run the MSI at %ProgramFiles%\Microsoft XNA\XNA Game Studio\v4.0\Setup\xnags_shared.msi
    9. Copy folder XNA Game Studio 4.0 provided in the zip file you downloaded at the start to C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 11.0\Common7\IDE\Extensions\Microsoft
    10. Go to the temporary folder you extracted to in step 2 and run the MSI named arpentry.msi
    11. Open a cmd window and run “C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 11.0\Common7\IDE\devenv.exe” /setup
    12. Delete the temporary folder you created, as well as the zip file and the folder you extracted that to. You don’t need those any more.
    13. Create some awesome games using XNA!

    Additional resources

    Visual Studio Professional 2013

    Visual Studio Professional 2012

    Visual Studio Professional 2010

    MonoGame for taking existing XNA Games and Apps to Windows 8 –

    XNA Game Studio -

    Getting Started creating Xbox Indie XNA Games -

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Student to Educator – How Microsoft can inspire tomorrow educators


    Guest Blog by - Dominic Langmead | University of Chester, my journey from a student to educator.

    My journey started in 2009, after leaving Scarborough Sixth Form College with 3 A Levels – Computing, Maths and German gaining A, D & C respectively. With this I decided I wanted to study Computer Science, initially with German and was presented two options – the University of Sheffield or the University of Chester.

    After point blank rejection from Sheffield due to lacking of a good quality Maths A Level, I was accepted into Chester, accepted into now what is my home and life. I studied combined honours for my first year then switched to single honours Computer Science. I graduated with a First.

    During my undergraduate studies I started working for the University part time within the Informatics Centre – a spin out company that employs students on real world projects with external clients. During my time at the Informatics Centre I picked up my MCSA in Windows Server 2008 and started working on the department’s own network infrastructure.

    At around the same time, I also enrolled onto the Microsoft Student Partner programme, it was this programme that kick started my career and gave me the experiences required to stay on at the University post-graduation. I organised a Windows Phone Camp for the University in my third year which was well attended and formed part of various student assignments.

    I also attended the MSP summit in London and met with leading Microsoft developers and worked on skills such as Public Speaking, Team Work and drinking beer improving technical skillsets.

    Thanks to the MSP programme I was able to link Microsoft to our undergraduate programmes to, module content, lecturer skill sets, network resources and provide keynote speakers for our up and coming Compsci Conference in April 2014. We’re now introducing Windows Azure into 3 of our modules, Windows 8.1 & Server 2012 R2 into two and Visual Studio 2012 into another.

    The MSP programme is a great opportunity not only for you in getting exposure to Microsoft products and their resources but also to those around you, such as your lecturers, support staff and fellow students. Remember, you don’t have to study Computer Science to have an interest in Microsoft technologies, or to be a developer!

    After graduating from Chester, I now lecture on 2 modules. One in the first year (Cisco) and one in the final year (Network Management & Infrastructure). My links with Microsoft allow me to keep current (I have upgraded my MSCA to include Server 2012), but more importantly to deliver the very latest in technologies to my students!

    Rock on the MSP programme – make it your own. It could take you in directions you never saw coming. The journey continues on Twitter.

    More Resources

    Microsoft Virtual Academy -

    Microsoft UK Student Facebook Group -

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