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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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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry brings Windows 8.1 innovations to industry devices

    Posted By Cuong Pham
    Product Manager, Windows Embedded

    Microsoft announced this week that Windows 8.1 will become generally available on October 18. At Windows Embedded, we’re excited to be a part of that announcement, as we continue to extend the power of Windows to industry devices. Building on the aligned release schedule first announced in June during the Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry Release Preview, on October 18 we will also deliver updates to Windows Embedded 8 to our embedded OEMs.

    Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry brings the latest Windows 8.1 innovations to industry devices:

    • Enhanced security through improvements in malware resistance, out-of-the box device encryption and biometrics;
    • Deeper lockdown control with customizable scenarios, configuration and new ability to lockdown USB peripheral and hardware button;
    • Expanded peripheral capabilities enabling support for magnetic stripe readers and barcode scanners in Windows 8.1 apps;
    • Better manageability through enhanced enterprise connectivity and integration, new management scenarios with System Center, and updated Remote Desktop Protocol;
    • Updated user experience including user interface improvements, updated charms, improved multi-monitor support and Internet Explorer 11;
    • Improved connectivity and mobility with roaming enhancements, Bluetooth 4.0 support, and near-field communication printer support.

    To preview the capabilities and innovations in Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry and Windows Embedded 8.1 Pro, download the public preview and evaluate how this modern platform will enable your next intelligent system-ready industry device.

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Windows Embedded Compact v.Next uncovered

    Posted By David Campbell
    Program Manager

    Woo hoo, it’s finally time to share more information about the upcoming release! First, the release now officially has a name: Windows Embedded Compact 2013. (I know that folks probably have questions around why we chose this name. We thoroughly considered a long list of potential names, including Windows CE again, and Windows Embedded Compact 2013 really did receive the best response.)

    I’ll be doing a number of posts about the various key features and changes in Windows Embedded Compact 2013 over the next few posts, but I want to start with arguably the most interesting of the new features: the investments made for Visual Studio 2012 support, both ISV/app development via Visual Studio directly; and the OEM/device development experience with Platform Builder, now hosted in Visual Studio 2012!

    With all development now in Visual Studio 2012, there is no longer a need for multiple versions of Visual Studio to support Compact development alongside other Windows platforms. Plus, you’ll get many of the new features and productivity improvements available in Visual Studio 2012 when developing for Compact! We now have the same C++ toolset and standards supported everywhere. (And of course Visual Studio 2012 includes the new features from Visual Studio 2010, which were not previously to Compact developers.)

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  • Windows Embedded Blog

    Windows Embedded 8 Industry: A Modern OS for Industry Devices

    Posted By Barb Edson
    General Manager, Marketing and Business Development

    On the heels of our recent release of the Windows Embedded 8 platform, we’re making another member of the Windows Embedded family available today — Windows Embedded 8 Industry. David Wurster, Microsoft Windows Embedded’s senior product manager, has details on how Windows Embedded has evolved beyond point-of-service (POS) systems in retail to do much more in the Windows 8 era.

    A couple of weeks ago, we announced the availability of Windows Embedded 8 Pro and Windows Embedded 8 Standard, bringing a modern OS with tons of capabilities to edge devices within intelligent systems.

    Building on that announcement, today we’re making available Windows Embedded 8 Industry. The name reflects a broad scope of possibilities to further expand the Windows Embedded 8 family across a range of industries and targeted intelligent system scenarios.

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