What's New in Windows Embedded CE 6.0

Other versions of this page are also available for the following:
Windows Mobile Not SupportedWindows Embedded CE Supported

For information on documentation added for the February 2007 documentation update, see What's New in Windows Embedded CE 6.0 Documentation for February 2007.

For information on documentation added for the November 2007 release of Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R2, see What's New in Windows Embedded CE 6.0 Documentation for November 2007.

The following table shows changes and improvements to CE 6.0 and Platform Builder and provides links to more information.

Topic Description

Application Compatibility Tool

This tool scans a dynamically linked library (DLL) for usage of obsolete APIs.

For more information about APIs that are obsolete in CE 6.0, see Obsolete Kernel APIs.

Best Practices for Faster Suspend Times

Describes how to minimize suspend times.

BIB and REG Editor

Provides information about the BIB and REG Editor, which you can use to open, view, and modify binary image builder (.bib) and registry (.reg) files in Platform Builder for Windows Embedded CE 6.0.

BinMod Tool

Command-line tool for modifying .bin files.

BinCompress Tool

Command-line tool for compressing .bin files.

BSP and SOC Directory Layout

The SOC (system-on-chip) directory is new for CE 6.0. The contents of the Windows CE 5.0 %_WINCEROOT%\Public\Common\Oak\CSP directory has been restructured and migrated to the new %_WINCEROOT%\Platform\Common\Src\SOC directory.

Build Tasks

Describes the new and changed functionality related to building a run-time image or subproject in CE 6.0.

Build Tool

Describes the updated functionality of the Build Tool (Build.exe) for CE 6.0.

Catalog Overview

Describes the new and updated functionality in the Platform Builder for CE 6.0 catalog, including file format, icons, and management changes.

For information about editing the XML-based Catalog files, see Catalog Editor.


CellCore provides a basic set of wireless connection oriented services that include the Radio Interface Layer (RIL), Short Message Service support (SMS), Wireless Application Protocol Support (WAP), an Extended TAPI and TSP, Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card support.

CE Update Check Tool

A new utility has been added to perform checks for Platform Builder and BSP updates.

CECImport Tool

The CECImport tool (CecImport.exe) enables you to migrate previous versions of Platform Builder Catalog item (.cec) files to the XML-based file format required for CE 6.0.


Function has been added to align the Close, Help and OK buttons on the command bar.

Core OS Best Practices

Best practices for avoiding caching issues on the ARMv4 and ARMv5 microprocessors.

Core OS Services Catalog Items

Added line item for SYSGEN_UIPROXY.

Creating, Registering, and Using a Handle-based API Set

Describes how to create, register, and use a handle-based API set. The following are supporting functions:

Daylight Saving Time Registry Settings

Updated in response to the Energy Policy Act to extend Daylight Saving Time (DST).

Debugging Functions

New debugging functions:

Developing a Networked Media Device

The functionality of the Windows CE 5.0 Networked Media Device Feature Pack is now available in CE 6.0. This allows you to create devices that consumers can use to playback audio and video on their home networks.

Developing a Windows Network Projector

Provides support for enabling conference room projectors to connect to Windows Vista-based PCs over a local network.

Displaying a User Interface from a Kernel-Mode Device Driver

Describes how to display a user interface from a kernel-mode device driver. The following are supporting programming elements:

Exception Reference

Added functions for vectored exception handling:

Fast Interrupt Mode on ARMv6 and ARMv7 Microprocessors Not Supported

Explains that fast interrupt mode is not supported on ARMv6 and ARMv7 microprocessors.

Included File Systems

The collection of file systems included with Windows Embedded CE has been expanded to contain the Extended FAT File System and the RAM (Object Store) File System.

File and Disk Caching

Windows Embedded CE now offers performance enhancing file cache management, and supports combining file caching with disk caching.

File System Encryption

Windows Embedded CE now offers file system encryption based on an individual device.

Internet Connection Sharing

Internet Sharing enables a device connected to the Internet to act as a network access point for other devices connected to it through Bluetooth or USB.

IP Phone Suite

The IP Phone Suite replaces the Telephony User Interface (TUI). It provides a set of components which offers OEMs and ISVs more flexibility when customizing VoIP applications.

Kernel API Modifications: Windows CE 5.0 vs. Windows Embedded CE 6.0

Describes modifications made to APIs due to changes to the kernel.

Kernel Buffer Marshaling Reference

The kernel buffer marshalling functions allow operating system server code to marshal memory to access the data passed by an application. The MapCallerPtr function and other functions that map pointers have been deprecated in favor of the kernel buffer marshalling functions.

For information about deprecated functions, see Kernel Migration.

Kernel Functionality Modifications: Windows CE 5.0 vs. Windows Embedded CE 6.0

Provides information about migrating to the CE 6.0 kernel.

Kernel Functions

Added new error handling functions for setting up a custom error handler:

Added functions for device drivers to obtain information about their calling process:

New API for waiting for an API to become ready:


This function enables or disables unaligned memory access on ARMv6 microprocessors.

Location Framework

The Location Framework is useful for developers writing location based applications. It provides an abstraction layer between the application and the underlying hardware and/or networking services that provide the device’s physical position.

Memory Management Functions

Added the Ex versions of the functions that manage virtual memory. These functions are the same as the non-Ex versions, except these functions require handles to the source and destination processes. The following functions are the Ex versions:

Added the functions for the remote heap functionality:

Migrating a Windows Embedded CE Driver to Windows Embedded CE 6.0

The Windows Embedded CE driver model has changed for CE 6.0. In Windows CE 5.0 and earlier, drivers ran in the Device.exe process. In CE 6.0, drivers run in the NK.exe process. Due to the updated driver model, Windows CE 5.0 and earlier—compatible drivers must be modified to work properly in CE 6.0.

Migrating to the Windows Embedded CE 6.0 IDE

Provides information about the following migration topics.

  • Migrating an OS design
  • Migrating a catalog item
  • Migrating to the CE 6.0 catalog
  • New concepts in Platform Builder 

Modifying an OS Design

Provides information about how to configure and modify an OS design by adding and removing objects, including catalog items, drivers, files, and subprojects.

You can also choose to use shared source code in your OS design.

Monotonically Increasing Clock

The monolithically increasing clock provides a time source that moves at the speed of the real-time clock (RTC), and is not affected by system time changes or local time changes made with the SetSystemTime or SetLocalTime functions. When the time changes, the operating system calculates the time offset, and saves it in the registry. This offset is applied whenever the protected time is queried.

The monolithically increasing clock feature provides the CeGetRawTime and CeGetRawTimeOffset functions.


New kernel function to delete static mappings.

Paging Pool

Describes the page pool functionality of the kernel. Supporting programming elements are:

Platform Builder User Interface

Provides information about the changes in the the Platform Builder for CE 6.0 user interface that have occurred as a result of the integration into CE 6.0. This includes menus, views, wizards, and other elements of the user interface.

Process and Thread Functions

New function for obtaining a handle to a thread:


Describes how to work with secure message queues.

Run-Time Image Viewer

Provides information about the Run-Time Image Viewer, which you can use to open and view the files and registry settings that are contained in an existing Windows Embedded CE run-time image file.

SDK Development

Provides information about how to create, modify, and build SDKs in CE 6.0.

Source Code Control

Provides best practices about how to integrate source code control systems with CE 6.0.

Sources File

Includes information about updated sources file macro definitions in CE 6.0.

Stampbin Tool

Describes the updated functionality in the Stampbin tool, which enables you to view and modify the PID stamp associated with a run-time image. For information about licensing a run-time image in the IDE, see License Run-Time Image Dialog Box (Visual Studio).

Supported Board Support Packages

CE 6.0 includes support for the following new sample BSPs:

  • Intel PXA27x Processor Development Kit (MainstoneIII)
    The Intel PXA27x Processor Development Kit (MainstoneIII) includes support for all hardware updates to the platform, such as 128 MB SDRAM and C5 stepping support. This BSP also supports variable tick timing, additional device states, and a suspend/resume feature that is controlled through switch 21 (SW21).
    For more information on how to set up and use this BSP, see How to Use the BSP for the Marvell PXA27x Processor Development Kit (MainstoneIII).
  • Texas Instruments SDP2420 Development Board
    This BSP can be used to validate ARMv6 functionality. If you installed support for ARM BSPs, you can find this platform under the %_WINCEROOT%\Platform\H4Sample directory.
    For more information on how to set up and use this BSP, see How to Use the BSP for the Texas Instruments SDP2420 Development Board.
  • TI OMAP5912 Aruba Board
    This BSP is a new low-cost, entry-level development platform based on the TI OMAP5912 processor. It includes support for SD storage card, USB, RTC, and supports booting from SD storage card or USB connection. It includes debug support with onboard LEDs and serial port.
    For more information on how to set up and use this BSP, see How to Use the BSP for the TI OMAP5912 Aruba Board.

The following BSPs have been updated and/or ported:

Sysgen Variables

Lists the new and removed Sysgen variables in CE 6.0. For more information, see New Sysgen Variables and Removed Sysgen Variables.

Trusted Environment Creation

The OEMCertifyModule function no longer supports OEM_CERTIFY_RUN.

Up-Down Controls Messages

UDM_SETPOS32 and the UDM_GETPOS32 functions have been added for getting and setting the position of an up-down control with 32-bit precision.

USB Function Composite Device Driver

The USB Function Composite device driver allows a Windows Embedded CE-based USB device to perform multiple functions simultaneously.

User Mode Driver Framework

The User Mode Driver Framework enables the running of drivers in user mode.

What's New in the C Run-Time Library

The C Run-Time Library support in CE 6.0 has changed in important ways. CRT entry and linking are different, and many of the CRT functions have been replaced by security-enhanced versions.

What's New in Supported Compilers

The CE 6.0 compilers have significant changes from previous versions, including numerous changes in compiler options and the addition of the C/C++ Code Analysis tool.

WMM (Wi-Fi Multimedia)

Wi-Fi Multimedia (formerly known as Wireless Multimedia Extensions) refers to QoS (Quality of Service) over Wi-Fi. QoS enables Wi-Fi access points to prioritize traffic and optimizes the way shared network resources are allocated among different applications.

Windows CE 5.0 Kernel vs. Windows Embedded CE 6.0 Kernel

Compares and contrasts the Windows CE 5.0 kernel with the CE 6.0 kernel.

Windows Embedded CE Test Kit

Many new tests have been included in the Windows Embedded CE 6.0 Test Kit (CETK), and the documentation for the CETK has been restructured. Some of the tests and test documentation added for CE 6.0 include: the MS Bluetooth Test; the Camera and DirectShow Integration Test; the Camera Driver Data Structure Verification Test; the Camera Driver I/O Test; the Camera Performance Test; the Credential Manager Test; the Direct3D Mobile Performance Test; the DirectDraw Performance Test; the DirectShow Performance Tests; the ICMP API Test; the MSMQ Test; the Notification LED Test Suite; and the Radiometrics Test.

Windows Media DRM 10 for Devices

Digital rights management support has been updated to Microsoft Windows Media DRM 10 for Devices.

Wceload Tool (Visual Studio)

The Wceload tool (Wceload.exe) has been updated with new and changed parameters.

Windows Embedded CE 6.0 OS Design Wizard

Provides information about the Windows Embedded CE OS Design Wizard, which you can use to create a starting point for creating and configuring OS designs.

Windows Embedded CE Subproject Wizard

Provides information about the Windows Embedded CE Subproject Wizard, which you can use to create a starting point for creating and configuring subprojects.

Community Additions