In preparation for all the Windows 8.1 device sessions at WPC 2013 this week, here’s a whole lot of useful resources targeting Windows 8.1 hardware. As with some other recent Microsoft events, here at Intunedin we took advantage of the heavily discounted Surface and Surface Pro offers yesterday, of which the Surface Pro is already updated to 8.1 courtesy of a heavily loaded hotel internet connection. I’ve ordered an el cheapo Miracast device from ebay, and am looking forward to see how that delivers.
What’s New In Hardware Support
Graphic and video
Increase display resolution, across all form factors and sizes, with high PPI. Provide better multi-monitor capabilities for more apps per display and support for Miracast wireless display.
Expand mobile broadband features and functionality. Provide higher bandwidth for more robust Wi-Fi experiences and improved support for Bluetooth and NFC.
Add solid-state hybrid drive support. Give customers faster boot, resume, and app launch times, plus higher performance and increased storage capacity at a reduced cost.
Improve camera features for higher quality photos from pre- to post-picture capture. Provide front and back microphones, improved echo cancellation, and new audio capture and effects for a real-time communication experience.
Security and identity
Increase security using the built-in biometric framework, easy authentication, and improved BitLocker recovery. Provide automated device encryption and improved support for virtual smart cards.
Maximize the touch experience with precision touchpads engineered to inspire confidence. Create a great, responsive touch experience across all form factors and sizes.
There is no shortage of downloads to take advantage of the new capabilities, let the downloading begin…
Visual Studio 2013 Preview for Windows
Begin by downloading either Visual Studio Professional 2013 Preview or Visual Studio Ultimate 2013 Preview. Both editions provide an integrated development environment for building efficient, high-quality drivers for Windows 8.1 Preview.
WDK for Windows 8.1 Preview
Next download the Windows Driver Kit (WDK) 8.1, which has tools to build, test, debug, and deploy drivers. Once you have the WDK, we recommend that you install the WDK 8.1 Test Pack. This package provides tests for device fundamentals; graphics; imaging; mobile broadband; and CDMA, GSM, WLAN sensors, and other utilities.
Important: An edition of Visual Studio 2013 Preview for Windows must be installed before installing the WDK 8.1 for Windows 8.1 Preview. Install Visual Studio Professional 2013 Preview or Visual Studio Ultimate 2013 Preview.
Standalone Debugging Tools
If you just need the Debugging Tools, not an entire kit (WDK 8.1 or Visual Studio 2013), you can install the Debugging Tools as a standalone component from the Windows 8.1 SDK Preview. In the installation wizard, select Debugging Tools for Windows, and deselect all other components.
Windows Remote Debugging Client
With Windows Remote Debugging (WRD) client, developers from Microsoft and third-party companies can collaborate remotely via the internet to debug kernel-mode failures using the Kernel Debugger (KD).
Samples for Windows 8.1 Preview
Download driver samples for Windows 8.1 Preview that build with either the Professional or Ultimate editions of Visual Studio 2013 Preview for Windows.
Windows Symbol Packages
Symbol files make it easier to debug your code. If you want all symbols for Windows 8.1 Preview, then download the symbol packages.