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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Easily Managing Your Lockdown Features

    Posted By J.T. Kimbell
    Program Manager

    Today I’m going to share a demo of something pretty awesome with you guys. Not as awesome as the recently announced Microsoft Surface tablet, but it’s still pretty cool. On Monday, we gave an overview of all the lockdown features on Windows Embedded Standard 8, and today I’m going to be showing you how you can easily manage those lockdown features by using the Unified Configuration Tool (UCT), a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-in.

    UCT comes as part of the Windows Embedded Standard 8 toolkit and can be installed by running emblockSetup_amd64.msi or embblockSetup_x86.msi (depending on your developer machine’s architecture). Download our second Community Technology Preview (CTP2) to try it out. With the tool, the lockdown features on your Windows Embedded devices can be remotely or locally managed by graphical user interface. From changing your custom shell for Shell Launcher to selecting what processes to block with Dialog Filter, there is a lot that UCT lets you configure.

    With some help from Brendan Rempel, a developer working on UCT, I created the following video that shows you UCT in action and teaches you more about it.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Get a lift with SYNC

    Posted By Chris Elliott
    Senior Marketing Communications Manager

    Microsoft and Ford want to chauffeur you, a friend and gdgt co-founder Peter Rojas in the all-new 2013 Ford Edge to gdgt live in New York on Monday, June 25! Along the way, you and your guest will experience the latest version of Ford SYNC with MyFord Touch and see firsthand why SYNC, powered by Microsoft, is one of the leading in-car infotainment systems in the industry.

    What’s better than being chauffeured through the streets of Manhattan in a brand-new Ford crossover while getting one-on-one time with gdgt co-founder Peter Rojas to chat about the latest tech gadgets (some of which you might even find in the car)? Plus, once you’re at the event, you’ll be able to participate in the VIP hour, where you can get to know some of the hottest names in consumer electronics, getting your hands on the latest gadgets and hot tech before any of your other friends.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Turn a Windows Embedded-based Thin Client Into a Wireless Network Analyzer

    Posted By Pavel Bansky
    Program Manager

    Thanks for checking back to Windows Embedded blog, I hope you won’t be disappointed. Today I want to write about an interesting usage of a Windows Embedded powered Thin Client. A friend of mine who works in Microsoft Support for Windows Phone was solving an interesting problem. One of the customers had issues accessing a particular webserver using Windows Phone. The webserver was using some certificate-based authentication and failed to authenticate the Windows Phone device. The question was: is it a problem with the phone or the server, or is the problem somewhere else? The first step was to capture and analyze the network traffic between the phone and server. Now, how to do it? There is nothing like WireShark for Windows Phone, so we can’t capture traffic there. Same on the server side, because the server is who knows where. So, I suggested capturing the traffic on the wireless router, but in order to do that we needed to build a router that allows network traffic to be captured.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    What is lockdown and branding in Windows Embedded Standard 8, and where are my EEFs?

    Posted By J.T. Kimbell
    Program Manager

    Over the next week we’re going to have a small series highlighting various Lockdown features on Windows Embedded Standard 8. In this first post Kevin Asgari gives us an overview of the Lockdown and Branding features found in Windows Embedded Standard 8. Kevin is a Writer for the Windows Embedded team and in his spare time enjoys reading, skiing, visiting wineries, and spending time with family.

    Windows Embedded Standard provides a building block version of the Windows operating system, enabling you to create a smaller, customized version of Windows by removing functionality that your device does not need. In addition, Windows Embedded Standard provides additional functionality for embedded devices that is not available in the full Windows OS. In Windows Embedded Standard 7 and earlier, we called these new features “embedded enabling features”, or EEFs for short.

    However, “embedded enabling features” is not a very descriptive term. In Windows Embedded Standard 8, we now call these features lockdown and branding features.

    Lockdown features enable you to provide a controlled device experience, mainly by limiting the ways in which an end user can interact with the device. For example, your device may be a dedicated cashier device that runs a full screen cashier application, and you may want to prevent users from being able to use Windows shortcut keys like Alt+Tab to switch out of the application, or Alt+4 to close the application.

    Branding features enable you to hide or change many of the parts of the OS that identify it as a Windows product. You may want the devices your company produces to show only your company’s branding to your customers for better brand recognition, or you may want to hide the underlying OS so that end users are less likely to try to break out of the tailored device experience.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Embedded Agility – A Transformation Story

    Posted By Phillip Cave
    Software Development Engineer

    [UPDATE from J.T. (7/30/12) - Phil has now become a blogger on the site and I've moved this post to his page]

    In this post, we hear from Principal Program Manager Phillip Cave, who has spent years practicing Agile and acting as a consultant for those trying to transition to Agile. When Phil’s not moving folks toward Scrum, Kanban, or other Lean methodologies, he enjoys sharing stories at conferences such as Agile West. Phil has consulted at Microsoft and many other organizations large and small for the past 8 years. He has a passion for helping others see the pragmatic application of Lean thinking and recognizes that successful transformations are carried out by teams that see the opportunity and embrace change. When not following his passion to help teams, Phil enjoys the beauty of the Pacific Northwest with a variety of activity from rowing crew to hiking the back country.

    This is just the first of a series of blog posts on Agile. For each of the headings below, Phil will spend some more time in the future fleshing them out and giving us more detail.

    Company transformations take time and energy. People are asked to move from one location to another intellectually. Moving is not always easy for some. Some love to move, to explore, to try new things, the author of this blog entry falls into that camp; others not so much and still more others are ambivalent.

    This is the (short) story of the transformation taking place in the Windows Embedded group within Microsoft. The journey began as all journeys do; someone spoke up about not being satisfied with the status quo in the delivery of product solutions. Our ability to respond to the changing market place and the changing landscape in technology towards devices makes us think of how we deliver business value quickly. People with experience in the transformation heard that voice and thus the transformation was born. A consultant with experience was hired and combined with the internal team members the transformation took root.

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