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Windows Hardware Newsletter

September 16, 2011

This newsletter contains archived content. No warranty is made as to technical accuracy of content or currency of URLs.

From the Editor

This month, we are excited to share news and information with you about the Windows Developer Preview release of "Windows 8" (code name for the next version of Windows) and the BUILD developer event that took place this week. We also have new information about developer kits, tools, and technical documentation for Windows 8.

We also are excited to roll out the new Windows Dev Center as your primary resource for kits, tools, and technical documentation for all versions of Windows, including Windows 8.

In the coming months, as we build upon the features and scenarios of Windows Developer Preview, we look forward to keeping you informed with the right technical guidance and documentation. All of our dev center pages include links that you can use to provide feedback. We look forward to hearing from you. Thanks for being a part of reimagining Windows.

~The Windows Hardware Content Team

Top Story

Windows Reimagined: Windows Developer Preview, Kits, and Tools for Windows 8

The Windows Developer Preview release is a pre-beta version of the next version of Windows, code-named "Windows 8." Go to the Windows Developer Preview downloads page to determine the best download package for your needs and to get system requirements and installation instructions. You can also download the new hardware development kits and tools that support Windows Developer Preview.

Get Windows Developer Preview:  

Get new hardware kits and tools:

News for Hardware Developers

BUILD Kicks Off Development for the Next Version of Windows

The BUILD event shows hardware and software developers how to take advantage of the future of Windows. For hardware, learn about new and enhanced kits and tools for driver development and for system assessment and deployment. Discover advances in driver frameworks and the graphics driver model, and see Windows 8 implementations of USB 3.0 and secure, fast boot with UEFI. Find out what's new in touch firmware development, greatly expanded class driver support for sensors, and device experience for Windows 8. For these and many more hardware-related topics, BUILD is the first place to dive deep into the future of Windows.

Watch keynote and session videos:

Discover What's New: Read the Windows Developer Guide

Discover how the next version of Windows is building on the fundamentals of Windows 7 by starting up faster, providing richer security features, and running longer on your choice of devices and chipsets.

Get the Guide:

New Windows Dev Center Released

The new Windows Dev Center is your single destination for all things from Microsoft about designing and developing hardware and software for Windows. Whether you are developing desktop productivity apps, new Metro style apps for the next version of Windows, drivers for devices, or hardware components for PCs, the Windows Dev Center gathers the depth and breadth of technical content, code samples, community engagements, development kits, and tools that you need.

Windows Dev Center:

Windows Hardware Development: 

Recently Published for Hardware Developers 

What's New: Hardware Design and Development for Windows 8

Windows 8 extends the fundamental features of Windows 7. Refinements to the kernel improve system responsiveness, security, and performance. Improvements in the driver model and tools chain for driver development improve system stability and reliability. Windows 8 works great on the same hardware that powers Windows Vista and Windows 7. And Windows now runs on ARM devices as well as x86 and x64.

This page gathers current technical guidance and documentation about what's new for hardware designers, engineers, testers, and driver developers in the Windows Developer Preview release of Windows 8.

Read more: 

Developing Drivers with Visual Studio

The Windows Developer Preview version of the Windows Driver Kit (WDK) is integrated with Visual Studio and provides a new environment for developing, deploying, testing and debugging drivers. The WDK with Visual Studio helps developers simplify the creation of more reliable, better-performing drivers.

Read more: 

New Capabilities in UMDF and KMDF for Windows 8

Windows Developer Preview includes Windows Driver Framework (WDF) 1.11, which adds several features to both User-Mode Driver Framework (UMDF) and Kernel-Mode Driver Framework (KMDF). UMDF 1.11 adds support for hardware access and interrupt handling. In addition, you can now create UMDF-based human interface device (HID) minidrivers. KMDF 1.11 adds support for system-mode direct memory access (DMA), passive-level interrupts, functional power states, dynamic forwarding of interrupt request packets (IRPs) to specific target queues, and more.

Read more:

What's New in Blogs for Hardware and Driver Developers 

"Building Windows 8" by the Windows Engineering Team

The "Building Windows 8" blog is designed to open a dialog with the professionals and enthusiasts who will be trying out the pre-release version of Windows over the coming months. We intend to post regularly throughout the development of Windows 8 and to focus on the engineering of the product.

See all posts:  

"Welcome to Building Windows 8" in "Building Windows 8" blog by Steven Sinofsky, 15 Aug 2011

Building the next release of Microsoft Windows is an industry-wide effort that Microsoft approaches with a strong sense of responsibility and humility. Windows 8 reimagines Windows for a new generation of computing devices, and will be the very best operating system for hundreds of millions of PCs, new and old, used by well over a billion people globally.

Read more: 

"Delivering fast boot times in Windows 8" in "Building Windows 8" blog by Steven Sinofsky and Gabe Aul, 8 Sep 2011

When it comes to talking about "fundamentals" we want to start with boot time - no feature gets talked about and measured more. We designed Windows 8 so that you shouldn't have to boot all that often (and we are always going to work on reducing the number of required restarts due to patching running code). But when you do boot we want it to be as fast as possible. This is a very deep topic and we have a lot of folks focused on it. We made a bigger leap in this area with Windows 8 than we have in a long time due in no small part to cooperation across the whole ecosystem. Gabe Aul, a director of program management in Windows, authored this post (a first in what will be a series of posts on fundamentals).

Read more:

Windows Driver Developer Kits, Tools, and

Windows Driver Developer Kits, Tools, and Programs

Developing Drivers with the Windows Driver Foundation

Buy the Book
WDF Resources on WHDC 

Events — In Person and Online

CES 2012
January 10-13, 2012
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

BUILD 2011: Session Videos
Watch sessions from the BUILD developer event on demand.

Microsoft Tech•Ed Russia
November 9-10, 2011
Moscow, Russia