The final pre-release flavor of Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system has just arrived, with a series of enhancements for all users to benefit from, as well as with a polished app development process for developers.
Developers already familiar with building applications for Windows 8 will see only small changes in the new Release Preview flavor of the OS, while benefiting from various bug fixes, better performance, and an improved overall developer experience.
This means that they will need to make only minimalistic changes to their applications built for the Windows 8 Consumer Preview. Release Preview
comes with better Windows 8 Application Data, which now offers “configure once, use anywhere” options, which would enable users to have the same app setup on all Windows 8 PCs.
The feature now includes HighPriority roaming app settings, meant to enable a continuous app experience across PCs through allowing a small amount of data from the app to roam with high frequency.
To implement it, “simply make a setting or composite with the name “HighPriority” in the root Roaming settings container,” Jake Sabulsky, program manager, Windows, explains in a blog post.
“That setting roams within a minute of being changed, which enables you to roam key pieces of state data about your app so a user can pick up where they left off across PCs.”
Another improvement that developers will benefit from in Windows 8 Release Preview is related to the templates in Visual Studio.
Microsoft focused on improving XAML templates in Release Preview, but it also delivered enhancements to all templates. Additionally, it included a new template for enabling devs to create their own Windows Runtime component.
The new Windows 8 release
also comes with improved file property and thumbnail prefetch APIs, which should result in better performance for all applications.
The Dev Center was also updated, offering more info on how to get started with the development of Metro style applications and providing more content than before.
Some of the main enhancements include - We added lots of new samples, including samples for the XAML WebView control, IndexedDB, the thread pool, JS web workers, and many more.
- There are now over 200 new conceptual, Quickstart, and how-to topics to help you build Metro style apps.
- The API reference documentation is more complete than ever.
Additional details on the changes that Microsoft made to the development of applications in the latest version of Windows 8 can be found in this blog post
The new Windows 8 Release Preview build 8400 can be downloaded from Softpedia as well, via this link