March 14th, 2016

My experience with installing Windows 10 Mobile development

I started with an Acer Aspire E1 laptop on Windows 8 and upgraded it to Windows Professional 8 then Windows Professional 8.1. I started using Visual Studio Express 2013 to maintain the Cordova SQLite plugin for Windows Phone 8 and and then develop the Windows 8.1/Windows Phone 8.1 version based of https://github.com/doo/SQLite3-WinRT. There has been demand for a Windows 10 (UWP) version so I upgraded the laptop to Windows 10 and installed Visual Studio Express 2015.

I had a number of challenges running a Windows 10 app on a mobile emulator or device. I had troubles and decided to put this part on hold. I went to a local electronics store, obtained a Microsoft Lumio 550 mobile device, and got a Visual Studio boilerplat app after a few tricks.

What I tried to get the emulator to work

As directed by Visual Studio 2015 Express, I downloaded and ran the Windows 10 emulator from: https://dev.windows.com/en-us/downloads/sdk-archive

Some tips from http://stackoverflow.com/questions/21059248/windows-phone-emulator-not-working:

I am logging these in case they may help someone else or may have had an unknown effect on getting my app to run on the Windows 10 mobile device.

Extra: Windows simulator

I was able to run the sample app in the Windows simulator. It looked like my Windows desktop.

How I got it to work on my Windows 10 mobile device

I enabled developer mode in both my Windows development system (Acer laptop) and my Windows Mobile device, as documented in: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/uwp/get-started/enable-your-device-for-development

But I still got a Windows 10 developer license error 800704c7 and discovered the solution at: https://disqus.com/home/discussion/makezine/tips_and_tricks_using_windows_10_iot_core_for_raspberry_pinbsp2/#comment-2031923826

In summary:

  • Run gpedit.msc from an Administrator command prompt
  • In Local Group Policy Editor: follow Local Computer Policy => Computer Configuration => Administrative Templates => Windows Components => App Package Deployment
  • Set “Allows development of Windows Store apps and installing them from an integrated development environment (IDE)” and “Allow all trusted apps to install” to Enabled

NOTE: This was easy for a Javascript app since there is no need to specify the platform.

Further testing

Running a C++ project on a Windows 10 mobile device

In this case the CPU architecture must be explicitly set. In Visual Studio 2015 it should be good enough to set it in the toolbar (it may be necessary to set the CPU architecure in the Configuration Manager in Visual Studio 2012/2013).

IMPORTANT: The project must be run on “Device” and not “Remote Machine”.

Running a Cordova project

I was able to create a Cordova project, add cordova-plugin-dialogs, and test cordova-sms-plugin pull request #72 on my Windows 10 mobile.

The one issue is that Visual Studio Express 2015 marks the Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 build projects as “incompatible”. I was able to run the same project as a Windows Phone 8.1 project using Visual Studio Express 2013. In addition, I was able to run a WP8 build on my Windows 10 mobile using Visual Studio 2013.