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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Troubleshooting Windows Embedded Standard boot problems

    **Updated 3/26/09 with preface

    [The following article is authored by one of the Windows Embedded MVPs (Most Valuable Professionals). Our MVPs have a heavy background in Embedded systems and are a great repository of information on Windows Embedded products. We’re providing this space on our team blog as a service to our readers by allowing MVPs to share some of their knowledge with the rest of the community.] 

    Windows Embedded Standard does not normally require too much troubleshooting, because the boot process is exactly the same as in XP Professional. But, according to Murphy’s Law, something will go wrong, no matter how the small the chance is. This post will try to give an overview of the most common reasons for failure and the ways to resolve them.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry now generally available

    Posted By Cuong Pham
    Windows Embedded product manager

    At Windows Embedded, we’re excited to be part of Microsoft’s announcement today: the general availability of Windows 8.1. This latest chapter in the Windows evolution takes Microsoft, our partners and customers, and consumers to new heights across a world of devices. It’s the realization of value driven by increased productivity and ultra-connectivity that extends from our personal lives to our workplaces, from the cities we live in to global business and beyond.

    With the release of Windows 8.1 and Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry, Microsoft achieves a tremendous milestone: The simultaneous availability of the latest Windows technologies across a wide array of hardware for consumers and for businesses, from the convenience and mobility of tablets and 2-in-1s, to the productive experience expected from laptops and all-in-ones, to ATMs, POS terminals, sonograms and other specialized industry devices.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Visual Studio 2012 to Support Windows Embedded Compact

    Posted By David Campbell
    Program Manager

    At the recent Visual Studio launch event, it was confirmed that Visual Studio 2012 will once again include support for Windows Embedded Compact.   Included in that support we’re targeting much of the newest compiler and tools functionality, most notable of which includes new compiler features such as C++11 language standards, faster more efficient code generated, an updated CRT, auto-parallelization and auto-vectorization  (Wow, that’s a mouthful.), range based loops, RValue references, and more.   Also included will be an updated version of .net CF which has greatly improved performance, particularly around memory allocation and garbage collection - using the “generational” garbage collector.  This not only provides more performance, but more predictability in the execution of applications.

    More information about the new Visual Studio, including support for Compact, can be found at the Visual Studio Launch site. (Yes, I’m in the video and no, I’m not going to be able to make a living in front of the camera.   But it’s the message that’s important here.)

    Be sure to check back in the future as we release more information on the upcoming Windows Embedded Compact release.

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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

    Windows Embedded Compact Platform Builder

    Posted By David Campbell
    Program Manager

    In a previous post, I discussed the Windows Embedded Compact 2013 announcement and a number of great new features in the OS and tools. With those posts, I received a number of questions about the tools. As you all know, Windows Embedded Platform builder (PB) is a plug in to Visual Studio. For Windows Embedded Compact 7, our Platform Builder plug in and tools were hosted by Visual Studio 2008, while Platform Builder in Windows Embedded Compact 2013 will be hosted in Visual Studio 2012. A number of people asked whether PB from Windows Embedded Compact 7 could be hosted in Visual Studio 2012, or alternatively whether PB from Windows Embedded Compact 2013 can target Windows Embedded Compact 7. Unfortunately, the answer to that is no. There had to be significant changes to both Windows Embedded Compact 2013, including PB, as well as Visual Studio 2012 to support the latest versions of each. The hosting has changed, and more importantly, the compilers and ABI (Application Binary Interface) to the ARM chipset has changed and are incompatible with each other. Even though each version of Windows Embedded Compact 7 can target the same chipset in this case, the compilers from each cannot support the other. More information will be posted on this in a future article.

    While the Windows Embedded Compact 2013 announcement is certainly exciting, we want to continue posting great information on Windows Embedded Compact 7 as well. To that end, we have another great in-depth article from Doug Boling to share.

    Optimizing Platform Builder in Windows Embedded Compact 7

    Microsoft Platform Builder is a tool that anyone who ports Windows Embedded Compact will live in throughout the project. (PB is also used when creating new device images from scratch. This information certainly applies to that scenario as well.) Given the time spent in this tool, it’s critical that your development machine be properly configured to maximize the performance of the tool and by implication your performance.

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