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Windows Mobile Team Blog

  • Windows Mobile Blog: Moving Day

    As of today the Windows Mobile Blog has moved and officially joined the Windows Blog. There are now two options for subscribing to our content.

    Windows Mobile Blog | RSS
    Our mobile insiders and technical experts will post content directly to the new Windows Mobile Blog. These posts will also bubble up to the higher level Windows Blog.

    Windows Blog | RSS
    In addition to our mobile content, you can also read Windows desktop blogs by subscribing to this broad feed.

    Feel free to subscribe to both! We look forward to hearing from you on the new site!

  • SDK, DTK, DRK: WTF?!

    Earlier this week we released the Windows Mobile 6.5 Developer Toolkit (DTK). This release has raised a few questions relative to the other Windows Mobile software development tools and resources. I’d like to take a moment to describe what the SDK, DTK, and DRK are, and just as importantly what they are not.


    Figure: Windows Mobile 6.5 Developer Resource Kit

    SDK: Software Development Kit

    We have not released a new SDK for Windows Mobile 6.5. The Windows Mobile 6 Professional SDK or Windows Mobile 6 Standard SDK are required for Windows Mobile 6.5 application development.

    DTK: Developer Toolkit

    The Windows Mobile 6.5 Developer Toolkit (DTK) is not an SDK! The DTK contains emulators, gesture APIs, and samples useful for developing Windows Mobile 6.5 applications. You will still need to install Visual Studio and the Windows Mobile 6 SDK prior to running the toolkit installer.

    DRK: Developer Resource Kit

    The Windows Mobile Developer Resource Kit (DRK) is an offline DVD copy of the most useful and relevant Windows Mobile application development tools and resources. Traditionally the DRK does not contain any exclusive content, in that nearly everything on the DRK is available for download online. This time we are pleased to publish the Windows Mobile 6.5 DRK with several sample chapters of Microsoft Mobile Development Handbook from Microsoft Press (Wigley, Moth, and Foot).

    We hand out free copies of the DRK at several conferences and developer events throughout the year. Beginning in July 2009, you may also order the Windows Mobile 6.5 DRK online at this Microsoft Web site. The previously listed Windows Mobile 6 Developer Resource Kit will be replaced.

    WTF: Where To Follow?

    Follow us on Twitter @wmdev to get the inside scoop and up to date information for development on Windows Mobile!

    Lastly, you can find the latest development resources at


    *UPDATE* Documentation has been released for Using Gestures in Windows Mobile 6.5. Thanks for your patience!


  • Getting started with widgets on Windows Mobile 6.5

    Now that the Windows Mobile 6.5 Developer Toolkit is out, it is time to start writing widgets!!!

    Necessary equipment:

    1)      The Windows Mobile 6.5 emulator images

    2)      The web development environment of choice

    3)      WMDC or Windows Mobile Device Center (on Vista or Windows 7) or ActiveSync 4.5

    With that you should be ready to go to get started, the first step is to start the emulator and cradle the device. The emulators can be started from the start menu under the “Windows Mobile 6 SDK -> Stand Alone Emulator Images -> <Language>”.  The device emulator manager can be started using explorer to navigate to the following folder “C:\Program Files\Microsoft Device Emulator\1.0” and selecting dvcemumanager.exe.

    Once they are both started, open WMDC or ActiveSync and select connection options and, on the “Connect one of the following” combo box select “DMA” and click “OK”.

    Now, on the “Device Emulator Manager” select “Refresh” and then find the emulator on the list, should be the GUID under others and right click -> cradle to connect it to the PC.

    UPDATE: Thanks to Peter Nowaks for pointing this out, The emulator can be listed under the "Windows Mobile 6 Professional SDK" category, depending if you have the Windows Mobile 6 SDK installed or not... Just look for the "play" icon :).

    Once that is done, select “Connect without setting up my device” and you should be ready to go, to test, open internet explorer on the 6.5 emulator and navigate to any site, if all is set up correctly it will navigate to it using our brand new browser.

    And now.... the fun part begins!

    To write a widget we need to follow three easy steps.

    1)      Develop your widget code

    For this you can use the web development tool of your choice, but as an example we can start with something super simple, as follows (copy it into a widget.htm document)



        <title>Cool Widget!</title>



    I'm a cool windows mobile 6.5 widget




    2)      Package your widget

    Now we have our extremely functional widget code, now we need to create a manifest file (so the framework knows what to do with it) following the w3C widget standard for packaging and configuration (On 6.5 we support the December 22 2008 draft), but to make things easy, here is a small manifest, copy it into a config.xml file in the same folder as your widget.htm

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>

    <widget version="1.0"



      <name>My first widget</name>

      <content src="widget.htm" type="text/html" />

      <access network="true" />

      <icon src="icon.png"/>

      <description>This is my first widget,

                   it won't make a lot of money on the

                   marketplace but at least is cute!</description>


    Don’t forget to also add an icon called icon.png on the same folder. 

    At this point, you should have three files (config.xml, icon.png and widget.htm), now we need to package them, on explorer, select the files, right click and send to a compressed folder (it is important to select the files and not the folder that contains them because we want config.xml  to be in the root of the zip container).  Now just rename the newly created zip file to “widget.wgt” and you are done with this step.

    3)      Deploy and run

    On “Computer” you should see the cradled device emulator as “PocketPC device”


    Use it to navigate to “My Documents” on the device and copy the widget file created in step 2 there.  Now, on the emulator, open file explorer using the start menu and, listed there you should see your widget file, click on it. 

    This should start the installation process, once that is done you will see your very first widget on screen!!!

    To continue playing with this widget (make it better, etc) you can find the uncompressed files on the “Program Files\Widgets\User\<WidgetID> folder" on the device. 

    The widget ID is generated at install time and it is an always increasing integer (therefore, the most recently installed widget will have the greatest number).  You can replace, add, remove files here for testing at will; the only thing you need for a your widget to pick the changes up is to exit it and start it again, it will have an entry on the start menu.

    I will be sharing more information about the widget API, how to extend the widget framework capabilities, debugging tips, best practices, etc in future posts but I wanted to help everyone to get started.

    For now, you can also take a quick look at my  TechDays session where I describe the API set and some of the capabilities of the framework.   To access it you'll need to log into the Microsoft Tech Days site and search for MBL302 Windows Mobile Web and Widgets: Leveraging web technologies to build experiences for Windows Mobile.

    Stay tuned, have fun and don't forget to share your thoughts... Also, before I forget, you can upload your cool widget creations to the Marketplace :), visit for more information.

    UPDATE: The MSDN docs are online

    Jorge Peraza

  • Windows Mobile RampUp track is now available on MSDN



    Are you interested in learning about Windows Mobile Application Development from the ground up and looking for some easy-to-use content that helps you get started? We have good news for you. We have just launched the MSDN RampUp track for Windows Mobile Application Development on MSDN.

    Last week, we had the opportunity to talk with Johanna White, Senior Product Manager with the RampUp program. Johanna has been responsible for launching the Windows Mobile track, along with several other tracks, the latest of which are Move from ASP to ASP.NET, Web Development with ASP.NET, and Move from PHP to ASP.NET, all of which just launched this week .

    Now you’re probably wondering, what does RampUp stand for? RampUp is a free online learning program that helps developers to acquire skills in specific technologies and development areas, such as Windows Mobile Development, SharePoint Development and many others. RampUp is completely free. It provides easy-to-access content, in a guided path that defines the important lessons and the order in which you learn them.

    RampUp content is offered in a variety of forms that allow you to choose the best way to learn; we have articles, codecasts, slidecasts and v-labs. All the content has been authored by well-known experts in the field, such as well-known book and article authors and MVPs.

    To access the Windows Mobile track for RampUp, click here. The Windows Mobile RampUp track consists of 7 modules, each of which takes you one step further to master Windows Mobile Application Development. These modules range from a basic introduction to Windows Mobile Application Development and a lesson on how to use the tools to Advanced Windows Mobile Forms Development. You will learn about Device Emulators, such as the specific features of Device Emulator 2.0 and Device Emulator 3.0, and we will show you how to control individual Device Emulators from inside Visual Studio 2008.

    The RampUp track for Windows Mobile will also provide you with an introduction to SQL Server CE. You will learn about the specific security consideration you will have to make when developing applications for Windows Mobile. In the final module, you will receive an overview of Windows Mobile Web development. You will learn how to identify on which device your application will run and what devices will support AJAX. After completing each module, you will have gained a solid foundation that will help you get started with to developing more advanced applications for the Windows Mobile platform.

    And as an added bonus, you will even receive a graduation award after completing the track.

    Make sure to check it out for yourself!

  • Marketplace Update

    This is an update with some helpful information to those developers wishing to register with Windows Marketplace for Mobile.


    ·         Market Availability : at this point, registration is open to English language markets (en-*) in the following countries: US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Singapore and India. Please stay tuned as we enable registration in other markets over the next few months.


    ·         Users with an existing billing relationship: for those developers who already have a Live ID and have previously established a billing relationship with Microsoft, we recommend that they go through the following steps to ensure they have all the information in their commerce profile:

    1.     Go to

    2.     Sign in with your Live ID that is associated with your credit card information

    3.     Under "Billing account overview", click on hyperlink "Go to personal information"

    4.     In the next page, under "Your personal information" make sure every item is correctly filled and is accurate. If there is any piece of information that's missing or is inaccurate, please click on "Edit personal Information", add/modify the missing piece (including phone number) and save.

    5.     Try to sign up for Windows Marketplace for Mobile again.