Xbox Live sandboxes introduction
In the Xbox Live service configuration article, it was explained that you must configure information about your title in Partner Center. This information includes things like the stats, leaderboards, localization, and more. Changes to your Xbox Live service configuration need to be published from Partner Center into your development sandbox before the changes are picked up by the rest of Xbox Live and can be accessed in your title.
A development sandbox allows you to work on changes to your title in an isolated environment. Sandboxes offer several benefits:
- You can iterate on changes to an update for your title without affecting the version that is live in production.
- For security reasons, some tools only work in a development sandbox.
- Other publishers cannot see what you are working on without being granted access to your sandbox.
By default, Xbox One consoles and Windows 10 PCs are in the RETAIL sandbox. You will need to switch your PC and/or Xbox One to the development sandbox to access that version of the Xbox Live service configuration. It's important to remember to change the device back to the RETAIL sandbox if you need to test something in RETAIL or want to take a break to play your favorite Xbox Live game.
Finding out about your sandbox
A sandbox is created for you when you create a title. You can find your Sandbox ID by opening your product in Partner Center and navigating to Services > Xbox Live. The Sandbox ID will be listed at the top of the page.
Switch your PC's development sandbox
You can switch your PC into the development sandbox by using Unity, Windows Device Portal (WPD) or via command-line.
The following needs to be done before you can switch in and out of the development sandbox in Unity:
The built in Xbox Live Configuration window lets you toggle between your development and RETAIL sandboxes easily. To start, go to Xbox Live > Configuration in the menu. You can see the current sandbox in the Developer Mode Configuration section.
- If Developer Mode says enabled, then you are currently in the development sandbox associated with your game. You can click the Switch back to Retail Mode button to switch out.
- If Developer Mode says disabled, then you are currently in the RETAIL sandbox. You can click the Switch to Developer Mode button to switch in.
Windows Device Portal
The following needs to be done before you switch your sandbox in Windows Device Portal (WPD):
- Open Windows Dev Portal by connecting to it in your web browser, as described in the Setup Device Portal on Windows Desktop article.
- Click on Xbox Live.
- Enter your development sandbox in the text field and click change.
To switch back to RETAIL, you can enter RETAIL here.
The following needs to be done before you can switch in and out of the development sandbox via command-line:
- Download the Xbox Live Tools Package at https://aka.ms/xboxliveuwptools and unzip.
- Run SwitchSandbox.cmd batch file in administrator mode.
Run this in Administrator mode to switch your sandbox. The first argument is the sandbox. For example, if you are trying to switch to the MJJSQH.58 sandbox, you would use this command:
To switch back to RETAIL, you simply provide that as the second argument.
Switch your Xbox One console development sandbox
Using Xbox Dev Portal
- Click on Xbox Live.
- Enter your development sandbox in the text field and chick change.
Using Xbox One console UI
You can use Dev Home to change the sandbox on your console directly:
- Click Change Sandbox, located under Quick Actions.
- Enter the sandbox ID and then click Save and restart.
Sign-In with the Xbox App
Once you've switched your development PC to use the proper sandbox for your title you'll want to verify that you're signed in to Xbox Live with an eligible test account. This can be done by signing into the Xbox Live App. Once your development environment starts using the desired sandbox the Xbox App will sign-in users using the same constraints as any other Xbox Live service running on the sandbox. This makes it useful to verify that you are using a valid account for the sandbox.