Top 5 commonly encountered issues and possible solutions using the Windows Phone 8 Emulator

The following blog discusses the most commonly seen issues that we have seen through customer issues on the forums.

The topics covered in this blog is a collection of known issues and possible resolutions that customers have used to resolve their issues.

1.) What hardware/software is necessary to run the Windows Phone 8 emulator?

The following link on MSDN: gives a good explanation of the requirements for running/ configuring the Emulator for Windows Phone 8 in a general sense. With so many different types of processors available in the market, this is not a one-stop link for resolving all issues with installing the Phone emulator.

The general guidance in this case is to make sure that you meet the minimum system requirements and also run the CoreInfo tool available through SysInternals site:

Even though the CoreInfo tool shows that your system supports Hyper-V, and if you are still having issues with configuring the Emulator, it is a good idea to check your BIOS settings and make sure that there are not any BIOS settings that are preventing the installation.

2.) Can I debug a Windows Phone 8 project (without using a physical phone) on Windows 7/Vista/XP?

You cannot debug a Windows Phone 8 project on a non-Windows 8 machine without an actual device. For an Emulator to run, it needs Hyper-V to run, and Hyper-V can only be configured on Windows 8 machine.

To debug with an actual phone device, your phone device must be registered for development and you can use the following link to perform the steps to register your device:

If you encounter an issue with deploying your Windows Phone 8 project to an actual phone itself, you can take a look at this forum thread which has helped other customers:

3.) Emulator not working/apps not deploying to the emulator

Virtualizing within a Virtual Machine is not supported, but there are 3rd party software solutions available that allows you to do this. If you are running into an issue with virtualizing from within a virtual machine, contact the vendor of the software.

4.) Networking issues with the Emulator

a. Network connection inside the emulator, such as sharing VPN connection with the Emulator is not supported

b. It is not possible to test NFC (Near Field Communication) on a Windows Phone Emulator. NFC functionality can only be tested using an actual device.

c. If you are experiencing issues sending HTTP requests using the System.Net.HttpWebRequest class and are receiving a generic error message that says: "System.Net.WebException: The remote server returned an error: NotFound.", you can use Fiddler to analyze and debug these errors. You can reference this blog: which will help you understand how to debug such issues.

5.) Differences between the emulator and the physical device

a. There may be a situation where your app runs fine on the Emulator, but does not work the same way on the actual phone. There have been reports of this issue arising due to different language settings on the Emulator and the Device. If your app behaves in such a way, make sure that your Emulator and the Phone are using the same language settings.

b. Different language of Visual Studio installation and the actual Phone SDK, can also cause an error saying: "The application could not be launched for debugging. Ensure that the target device screen is unlocked and that the application is installed." . If you are getting this error, make sure that your Visual Studio installation language and the SDK installation language are the same.

c. You can’t deploy an app to the emulator if the app lists ID_REQ_GYROSCOPE or ID_REQ_MAGNETOMETER hardware requirements in the WMAppManifest.xml file.

You’ll receive the following error message if you try to deploy to the emulator an app that has gyroscope, compass, or Near Field Communication (NFC) capabilities set in the WMAppManifest.xml file: “Installation of the application failed. Run time error has occurred. Fix the Capabilities in WMAppManifest.xml file.”

If the app needs these requirements, test the app on a Windows Phone 8 device instead of on the emulator.


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