.NET Developments

Mar 31 2009   9:18PM GMT

Developing Windows 7 apps in managed code

Yuval Shavit Profile: YuvalShavit

Windows 7 has some great new UI improvements. I use it as my main (in fact, only) OS at home, and I downright miss it when I come to the office and muddle through on my XP laptop. I haven’t felt like this about a windowing system since I discovered virtual desktops on Linux and started yearning for them on Windows. (Ahem, Windows 8, I’m looking at you.)

There’s just one problem: many of the new features need application-level support to really shine, and the code samples in Microsoft’s beta Win7 SDK are mostly for unmanaged code. Microsoft has a “Windows Vista Bridge Project” that provides managed wrappers for unmanaged APIs, but it doesn’t include the Windows 7 APIs yet.

In short, learning how to use Windows 7’s newest features isn’t easy if you’re writing managed apps.

Come Microsoft to the rescue: the company has been putting out .NET interop libraries that provide just that wrapping. The libraries are unsupported, but developers itching to get a jump start on Windows 7 development should find them helpful. Microsoft’s Windows 7 technical evangelist Yochay Kiriaty highlighted some of these Windows 7 code samples on MSDN, along with copious links.

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