Windows Store is open! Start building!

Windows 8 introduces a new type of application: the Windows Store app.  Windows Store apps have a brand new look and feel, run on a variety of devices, and you sell them on the Windows Store.

Apps running on different devices

You can develop  Windows Store apps in a variety of languages:

  • If you know web development technologies, you can develop a Windows Store app using HTML5, Cascading Style Sheets, Level 3 (CSS3), and JavaScript.

  • If you have developed .NET,  Windows Presentation Foundation, or Microsoft Silverlight  applications, you can develop a Windows Store app using XAML, with code-behind in C++, C#, or Visual Basic.

  • If you know DirectX, you can develop a DirectX Windows Store app using native C++ and HLSL to take full advantage of graphics hardware.

This guide tells you why you want to develop Windows Store apps, where to get the tools you need, and how to build your first app.

Important  Windows Store app development is supported only on Windows 8. You can't develop Windows Store apps on Windows 7 or Windows Server 2012.


1. Get set up

Start here to learn about  Windows Store apps and get the tools you need to create them.

  • A. What's a Windows Store app?

    At this point, you might be asking, "OK, so what are Windows Store apps and how do they differ from desktop apps?"  Read this article to learn about what makes  Windows Store apps different.

  • B. Get the tools

    Download Windows 8 and the free developer tools you need to create Windows Store apps: Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows 8, Blend for Microsoft Visual Studio 2012 for Windows 8,  the Windows 8 software development kit (SDK), and project templates for creating new Windows Store apps.

  • C. Get a free developer license

    Before you can start creating Windows Store apps, you need a developer license. Fortunately, it's quick and easy to get one.

2. Build your first app

After you download the tools and get a developer license, you're ready to choose a language and create your first app.

JavaScript and HTML C# or Visual Basic and XAML C++ and XAML C++ and DirectX
Build your first app using JavaScript Build your first app using C# and Visual Basic Build your first app using C++ Build your first app using DirectX


3. Learn the tools and templates

Now that you got your feet wet, learn more how the developer tools can help you design and create apps.

  • Develop Windows Store apps using Visual Studio 2012 RC

    Although the Getting started tutorials have you use Visual Studio, they barely touch on the many features it provides.  Read this topic to learn more about how Visual Studio can help you  create and deploy Windows Store apps. 

  • Templates to speed up your app development

    Visual Studio and Blend  project templates provide a starting point for creating Windows Store apps.  The topics in this section describe project and item templates for Windows Store apps

  • Design Windows Store apps using Blend

    Blend provides the most support for designing a great-looking user interface for your Windows Store app. In this section, learn how to use  Blend and complete a tutorial that helps you design a game using Blend.

4. Learn how to make great Windows Store apps

To really make your app stand out, we recommend that you follow  design principles . Follow these guidelines  to  make your Windows Store app great. 

5. Download samples

Sometimes, the best way to learn something is through example. We created hundreds of SDK samples to show how key features work. Learn how to download, build, and run samples from the MSDN Gallery for Windows Store app samples.



Build date: 11/2/2012