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January 2011 Update for Windows Phone 7 dev tools - New Emulator & Utilities

02.04.2011
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The long awaited update for the official developer tools is out. And although the actual update for the phone itself is not out, you can already see what the new system will carry - copy and paste functionality. One interesting thing is that you won't be able to use this functionality on a test device unless the device is updated to the new OS build (supposed to be shipped later this month).

That being said, the update also includes the set of tools necessary for better application testing and deployment prepration.

  • Windows Phone Capability Detection Tool 
  • Windows Phone Connect Tool 
  • Updated Bing Maps Silverlight Control

These tools were already available as independent downloads - the only difference it makes now is the fact that those are built-in with the default SDK. The emulator works much faster, at least from what I can see. Another interesting fact worth mentioning is that the emulator engine is the same - Microsoft XDE remained untouched. What changed is the OS image that is now distributed with the current developer tools.

The new image is built on January 25th, 2011.

The old image is built on September 1st, 2010.

The emulator (XDE) can load both images, in case you saved the old one for testing purposes. The new image is still locked down and you cannot use the integrated software.

The update itself consists of two files:

  • VS10-KB2486994-x86.exe
  • WindowsPhoneDeveloperResources_en-US_Patch1.msp
Both are required in order to be able to use the updated SDK. Although Microsoft recommends installing the patch first, I updated Visual Studio and then proceeded to put the patch in place - it seems (at the moment) that the order of installation of the above mentioned files is not important.

You can download the updated tools here. The release notes are available here.