Quickstart: Acquire a token and call Microsoft Graph API from a Windows desktop app

In this quickstart, you download and run a code sample that demonstrates how a Windows desktop .NET (WPF) application can sign in users and get an access token to call the Microsoft Graph API.

See How the sample works for an illustration.


Register and download your quickstart app

You have two options to start your quickstart application:

Option 1: Register and auto configure your app and then download your code sample

  1. Go to the Azure portal - App registrations quickstart experience.
  2. Enter a name for your application and select Register.
  3. Follow the instructions to download and automatically configure your new application with just one click.

Option 2: Register and manually configure your application and code sample

Step 1: Register your application

To register your application and add the app's registration information to your solution manually, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to the Azure portal.
  2. If you have access to multiple tenants, use the Directories + subscriptions filter in the top menu to switch to the tenant in which you want to register the application.
  3. Search for and select Azure Active Directory.
  4. Under Manage, select App registrations > New registration.
  5. Enter a Name for your application, for example Win-App-calling-MsGraph. Users of your app might see this name, and you can change it later.
  6. In the Supported account types section, select Accounts in any organizational directory and personal Microsoft accounts (for example, Skype, Xbox, Outlook.com).
  7. Select Register to create the application.
  8. Under Manage, select Authentication.
  9. Select Add a platform > Mobile and desktop applications.
  10. In the Redirect URIs section, select https://login.microsoftonline.com/common/oauth2/nativeclient and in Custom redirect URIs add ms-appx-web://microsoft.aad.brokerplugin/{client_id} where {client_id} is the application (client) ID of your application (the same GUID that appears in the msal{client_id}://auth checkbox).
  11. Select Configure.

Step 1: Configure your application in Azure portal

For the code sample in this quickstart to work, add a Redirect URI of https://login.microsoftonline.com/common/oauth2/nativeclient and ms-appx-web://microsoft.aad.brokerplugin/{client_id}.

Already configured Your application is configured with these attributes.

Step 2: Download your Visual Studio project

Run the project using Visual Studio 2019.


To avoid errors caused by path length limitations in Windows, we recommend extracting the archive or cloning the repository into a directory near the root of your drive.

Step 3: Your app is configured and ready to run

We have configured your project with values of your app's properties and it's ready to run.



Step 3: Configure your Visual Studio project

  1. Extract the zip file to a local folder close to the root of the disk, for example, C:\Azure-Samples.

  2. Open the project in Visual Studio.

  3. Edit App.Xaml.cs and replace the values of the fields ClientId and Tenant with the following code:

    private static string ClientId = "Enter_the_Application_Id_here";
    private static string Tenant = "Enter_the_Tenant_Info_Here";


  • Enter_the_Application_Id_here - is the Application (client) ID for the application you registered.

    To find the value of Application (client) ID, go to the app's Overview page in the Azure portal.

  • Enter_the_Tenant_Info_Here - is set to one of the following options:

    • If your application supports Accounts in this organizational directory, replace this value with the Tenant Id or Tenant name (for example, contoso.microsoft.com)

    • If your application supports Accounts in any organizational directory, replace this value with organizations

    • If your application supports Accounts in any organizational directory and personal Microsoft accounts, replace this value with common.

      To find the values of Directory (tenant) ID and Supported account types, go to the app's Overview page in the Azure portal.

More information

How the sample works

Shows how the sample app generated by this quickstart works


MSAL (Microsoft.Identity.Client) is the library used to sign in users and request tokens used to access an API protected by Microsoft identity platform. You can install MSAL by running the following command in Visual Studio's Package Manager Console:

Install-Package Microsoft.Identity.Client -IncludePrerelease

MSAL initialization

You can add the reference for MSAL by adding the following code:

using Microsoft.Identity.Client;

Then, initialize MSAL using the following code:

IPublicClientApplication publicClientApp = PublicClientApplicationBuilder.Create(ClientId)
                .WithAuthority(AzureCloudInstance.AzurePublic, Tenant)
Where: Description
ClientId Is the Application (client) ID for the application registered in the Azure portal. You can find this value in the app's Overview page in the Azure portal.

Requesting tokens

MSAL has two methods for acquiring tokens: AcquireTokenInteractive and AcquireTokenSilent.

Get a user token interactively

Some situations require forcing users interact with the Microsoft identity platform through a pop-up window to either validate their credentials or to give consent. Some examples include:

  • The first time users sign in to the application
  • When users may need to reenter their credentials because the password has expired
  • When your application is requesting access to a resource that the user needs to consent to
  • When two factor authentication is required
authResult = await App.PublicClientApp.AcquireTokenInteractive(_scopes)
Where: Description
_scopes Contains the scopes being requested, such as { "user.read" } for Microsoft Graph or { "api://<Application ID>/access_as_user" } for custom web APIs.

Get a user token silently

You don't want to require the user to validate their credentials every time they need to access a resource. Most of the time you want token acquisitions and renewal without any user interaction. You can use the AcquireTokenSilent method to obtain tokens to access protected resources after the initial AcquireTokenInteractive method:

var accounts = await App.PublicClientApp.GetAccountsAsync();
var firstAccount = accounts.FirstOrDefault();
authResult = await App.PublicClientApp.AcquireTokenSilent(scopes, firstAccount)
Where: Description
scopes Contains the scopes being requested, such as { "user.read" } for Microsoft Graph or { "api://<Application ID>/access_as_user" } for custom web APIs.
firstAccount Specifies the first user in the cache (MSAL support multiple users in a single app).

Help and support

If you need help, want to report an issue, or want to learn about your support options, see Help and support for developers.

Next steps

Try out the Windows desktop tutorial for a complete step-by-step guide on building applications and new features, including a full explanation of this quickstart.