Visual Studio 2013 Update 4 RC now Available

Visual Studio 2013 Update 4 RC is now available to download. This release has lots of small features and fixes for ASP.NET and web platform, Team Foundation Server, Visual C++, JavaScript Editor, Testing Tools, and some other areas. Specifically for updates to the web development tools checkout this new features announcement on .NET web development and tools blog.

The release notes have the complete list of features and fixes included in this release.

[#XAMARIN] Updating #Android emulators to work with #VisualStudio and #Xamarin

Working with Xamarin, I found myself with the following exception, building and running a demo:

Target device (emulator-5554) has an API level of 12, but this application has a minimum API level of 19 set.

The minimum API level can be changed in the project properties on the Android Manifest tab.

This error is given in our list of emulators for Android only we have available 2 virtual devices, in this case for API level 10 and 12.


So what we have to do is “install” or download new emulators that support in this case Api Level 19. Now it the time to search and run the Android SDK Manager.

Windows search quickly leads us to the Android SDK directory


And within the same we can already launch [SDK Manager.exe], which is the app who manages Android SDK resources we have installed locally. In the next image you can see I have selected resources for API Level 19 and I’ve decided to download a couple of images to work with them.


After a few minutes, the SDK Manager will finish the download and installation. Now you can close the Android SDK Manager and return to Visual Studio.


From the IDE launched the Android Emulator Manager in the option ‘ Tools / / Android/Open / Android Emulator Manager… ”


And we will see that we… still have only emulators for API Level 10 and 12. So that now create a new AVD with the definitions that we need. For this click on Create and for example, to create one for a Nexus 7 with the following configurations.


Once defined the values, we can already see the result of the process of creating the AVD.


It also appears in the list of AVDs


And you can launch it from the Android Virtual Device Manager


And we can see the emulator running within a few seconds


Note:At first glance, emulators for Android leave a lot to be desired when compared to the Windows Phone.

Now we can return to our Xamarin Android project and… when we select the device or emulator for testing, we have available the new emulator that we created in previous steps (should it now show up, a simple Visual Studio reboot will do the trick)


And now yes, Welcome to Xamarin Forms!

Windows 10 Technical Preview contains code for upcoming consumer preview

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A member of WPCentral’s forums has discovered a small but interesting feature in the recently released Windows 10 Technical Preview for Enterprise. It apparently contains code for the upcoming consumer version of the OS that should be released in full sometime in early 2015.

As forum member “markm091” mentions in his forum post this week, “I was poking around using the DISM utility and found that the image contains a second index, called “Windows Technical Preview for Consumer”.

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He then write, “I applied this image to a VM and found it is the same build number, but the watermark now displays ‘Windows Technical Preview for Consumer…”” He adds that there doesn’t appear to be anything different in the OS since appling that image. In other words; there’s no support for Cortana or the notification center or Internet Explorer 12 that are all expected to be added to the consumer preview version of Windows 10.

windows 10

It’s possible that people who have already downloaded the enterprise tech preview for Windows 10 will simply be able to update that OS to the consumer version when it is ready to be released by Microsoft, rather that download the entire operating system file all over again. It’s a small but interesting discovery and it may be a clue as to how Microsoft will update Windows 10 in the future.


Microsoft offers details on command line console improvements in Windows 10

Microsoft’s launch of the Windows 10 Technical Preview last week brought back the Start menu and support for multiple desktops but users who want to go deep inside the OS will find some changes and improvements in the command line console, or conhost.exe, as well

Microsoft has now posted a new blog entry that offers a lot of details of what’s been improved in the console for this first preview build of Windows 10. One feature is the ability to actually alter the console window’s size. Microsoft says:

“Wouldn’t it be great if you were able to just grab the edge and pull the console window wider? We agree with you, and now you can do just that. If you attempt to stretch the window width greater than the existing buffer size, we assume that you wanted to make the buffer bigger as well without all that messing around with the Properties dialog. Conversely, shrinking the window width will attempt to shrink the buffer size back down again to the smallest available size that will hold what you already have in the buffer. We’ll only show you the scroll bars if you set the dimensions manually or if the longest line of text in the buffer is wider than the window.”


There’s a ton of other details about what’s been added to the console for Windows 10. This kind of deep diving is not for the casual PC user but it’s certainly cool that Microsoft continues to make changes to these kinds of basic features.

Happy testing! 🙂

Visual Studio “14” CTP 4 and TypeScript 1.1 CTP Released

Today Visual Studio “14” CTP 4 was released. To get started, download the bits (also available on MSDN subscriber downloads page), or use one of the VMs in Azure. This CTP includes all features and fixes from previous CTPs, and:

ASP.NET vNext tooling and runtime updates. Visual Studio “14” CTP 4 supports NuGet Package Manager and package manager console for ASP.NET vNext projects. The ASP.NET vNext project template supports a more natural project layout, with a project folder under <solutionFolder>\src and static contents under the wwwroot folder determined by the webroot element of project.json. This blog post and the release notes on GitHub go into more depth.

Debugger improvements. The new breakpoint settings information appears in a Peek window that includes IntelliSense support for breakpoint conditions and actions. We also improved performance so that when debugging, C++ applications start faster. To learn more about debugger enhancements see the new breakpoint configuration experience and C++ debugging improvements blog posts.

Breakpoints Peek

XAML Editor supports Peek. The XAML editor adds support for Peek definition for all XAML project types so you can use the Peek Definition command to view and edit code without having to switch your context or the document you are currently editing.

The Visual Studio “14” CTP knowledge base article has the complete list of fixes and features.

In addition, the TypeScript 1.1 CTP for Visual Studio “14” CTP4 , Visual Studio 2013 , and Node Packaged Modules were released. This CTP includes the first release of a significantly faster compiler with full TypeScript 1.0 language compatibility. And, if you’re using TypeScript from Visual Studio, you also get full IntelliSense, code navigation, and integrated build. You can see and contribute to the project on GitHub. Read more on the TypeScript blog.

Windows 8.1 Update 2 references found in Windows 10 Technical Preview


References to a now cancelled “Windows 8.1 Update 2” release have now been found inside the code for the Windows 10 Technical Preview that was launched earlier this week by Microsoft.

Microsoft had launched Windows 8.1 Update 1 in the spring of 2014 that added some improvements for using the Modern UI interface with a mouse and keyboard. In August, it issued a small update for the OS that added a few new features but the company said, ” . . . despite rumors and speculation, we are not planning to deliver a Windows 8.1 ‘Update 2.'”

Now a screenshot that clearly shows a reference to Windows 8.1 Update 2 has been found by noted Windows watcher “FaiKee” on his Twitter account. Exactly what Microsoft would have put into Update 2 will have to remain as pure speculation. However, the company did announce at BUILD 2014 in April they planned to offer a Start menu to Windows 8.1 owners “as an update”. It’s possible the company decided to change their minds and put that long requested feature in Windows 10, rather than in an update to their current OS.

Windows 10 app strategy may be revealed by Microsoft November 12

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Microsoft isn’t offering much information at this point on its app strategy for Windows 10, but that may change on November 12 as the company could make some announcements at two events; one in New York City and the other in London.

We’ve already reported about the London event, called Future Decoded, which is actually a three day conference. The third day, November 12, will focus on app developers. In addition, ZDNet reports, via unnamed sources, that Microsoft will hold an invite only event in New York City on that same day that will also focus on apps.

ZDNet says that Microsoft might launch the next beta of “Visual Studio 14”, the placeholder name for the next version of its softare development tools, on or about November 12. Microsoft might use both events to give developers a heads up on its universal apps plans. The company has already told developers that “the best way to prepare for Windows 10 is to keep building universal Windows apps.”