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When you use hotmail.com or Live Messenger or even Live Search, you've used Live Services. Live Services include more than 15 services and is part of Azure Services Platform. Users can share files, photos, and contacts, synchronize them automatically between different devices, and more. As ISVs your applications, with user permission, can interact with all these services.
You can get an idea of the Live Services that are available to you as an software developer:
Your applications can take advantage of Live Services through a SOAP or REST API using the Live Services SDK. But what you really want are controls you can drag and drop into your application and then wire up. Jani Järvinen has put together an article on Developer.Com that show code on how to wire up three of the Live Services using Live Tools for Visual Studio. Jani's article is entitled Tapping Into Microsoft Live Services with C#. He shows how:
You'll need Windows Live Tools for Visual Studio. (The link to the latest CTP posted last week is at the end of this posting.) Windows Live Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 are a set of control add-ins to make incorporating Windows Live Services into your Web application easier with Visual Studio 2008 and Visual Web Developer Express 2008. You'll get:
Check out the latest Community Technology Preview (CTP) of Windows Live Tools for Visual Studio. To get an idea of the kinds of applications you can do, and more sample code, see Quick Applications.
You can download the very latest tools in the April release, Live Framework Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio April 2009 CTP. You'll get both the Live Tools and the updated Live Framework SDK.
To keep up to date, watch the Live Services team blog.