101 WinRT Controls and Frameworks

Last updated 24th October 2012.

Ok, not quite 101 but I’m sure we will get there 🙂 If I have missed something, please share with a comment. Enjoy!

UX Frameworks – commercial

UX Frameworks – open source




  • http://winrtdatabase.codeplex.com/ but this has not been updated for Windows8 RTM – and therefore would act as a starting point
  • Also check out Windows Azure Mobile Services for a cloud database geared towards mobile apps.

Windows Azure Mobile Services

Currently in Preview.

Store data, authenticate (Microsoft accounts, Facebook, Twitter, Google) and authorize users, send email/sms and push notifications to devices using Windows Azure Mobile Services

Bing Maps for Windows Store Apps

Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows 8

  • · Win 8 RTM Compatible Ad SDK download
  • · Win 8 RTM Compatible Ad SDK MSDN Documentation
  • · Microsoft Advertising for Windows 8 Website for blog posts, FAQs, support and more

Analytics for WinRT

Omniture has a WinRT SDK today in beta: https://developer.omniture.com/en_US/content_module/mobile

Video Player for Windows 8

Currently Preview 6 (22/9/2012)

Play Ready SDK for Windows 8

Audio and Video content protection for streaming and progressive download

Windows Store Tips: Run the Windows App Certification Kit frequently and on a low spec computer

[Windows Store Tips]

Run it often

The Windows App Certification Kit test is one of the first things that happens to your application during certification – and if you fail it, your submission fails. The good news is that the WACK is also something you can run locally before you submit. Please do. In fact, why not integrate it into your build process or get into the habit of running it whenever you are making significant changes to the code.

Also run it on a low spec machine

However as well as running it frequently, also run it on a low spec computer (or Virtual Machine) – Atom is a good processor to aim for.

And run it on clean machine where your application has never run

Just in case you are seeing a performance boost from “caching of something”…

Creating a package gives you the option to launch the kit:


or just type “windows app cert” into the search charm:


And there is a command line to use as well:

appcert.exe reset

appcert.exe test -apptype metrostyle -packagefullname [package full name] -reportoutputpath [report file name]


Windows Store Tips: Do not leave creating the store submission to the last day!

[Windows Store Tips]

Several of the teams we have worked with have delayed looking at the store submission process until the very end … and only then realised a) how much time and effort is involved to do it well and b) there are a few areas that require some careful consideration.

There are eight steps you need to complete, some take a minute or two, some take much longer.


Areas that require some thought tend to be questions like “What age rating?” and “How do I answer this cryptography question?”. Check them out sooner rather than later!

Areas that require some effort to do well are things like descriptions, screenshots and promotional images. Promotional images are not screenshots! (More on that in a future post)

What often compounds this is the developer doing the submission is likely not the person best placed to fill in some of the fields. Again, do not leave it until the end to find this out.

Read other Windows Store Tips

Windows Store Tips: You need a privacy policy in your store listing AND in your application

[Windows Store Tips]

If your application collects personal information or we think it might collect personal information then you need a privacy policy.

The detail can be found at 4.1.1 Your app must have a privacy statement if it collects personal information and thankfully it is now much more explicit.

The two areas that caught companies out were:

“I’m not collecting personal information, I’m just using the internet. But i failed???”

However, an IP address is personal information and declaring Internet capabilities such as internetClient and internetClientServer in the app manifest makes us think you’re collecting the IP number of the user. You will need a privacy policy

“I have a privacy policy in my listing, yet I failed???”

That is because you need it in the description page for your application and in the applications settings as displayed from the Windows Settings charm.


Windows Store Tips: Turn off Internet Client in Visual Studio if you don’t use the Internet

[Windows Store Tips]

When you create a new Windows Store project in Visual Studio 2012 it “helpfully” turns on one Capability in the manifest – “Internet Client”.


Which is great … if you use the Internet.

But… having this turned on means your application must have a privacy policy to be approved for the Windows Store else it will fail submission. There are other reasons why you might need a privacy policy – but this one has tripped up many development teams.

If you don’t need it, turn it off.

Read other Windows Store Tips

Six Steps to Windows Azure


In January (2012)I delivered the hugely fun Six Weeks of Windows Azure. There was a lot right in the format we went with as well as improvements and changes we could make/try – I even did a little retrospective on it.

Less than a year on, I give you Six Steps to Windows Azure (can you see what we did there). This time I’m not involved in the actual execution (which could well be a good thing!) as I’m heads down on Windows 8 WinRT applications.

Six Steps to Windows Azure will guide developers and IT professionals currently building apps or considering the cloud on how to take full advantage of Windows Azure covering  both the technical and commercial aspects of adopting Windows Azure. There will be a brand new web site but registration is now open for the first sessions:

Windows Azure in the Real World – 8th November 2012

Advanced Topics in Windows Azure – 9th November 2012

I plan to attend on the 9th – see you there.