Windows 11 Changes and Meanings Developers Need to Know

Microsoft’s Windows 11 announcement covers a much broader range than a single operating system. The new Windows Store and, more importantly, new policies on application distribution will shape the direction of Windows application development for years to come. Additionally, the announcement includes the name of Project Reunion, WinUI 3 controls, and Material UI elements that are newly introduced as part of the Windows Fluent UI model.
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Windows 11 is internally based on the same Windows as a service model as Windows 10. Insider Insiders using the Developer (Dev) build branch have already been using much of the underlying Windows 11 code, not just the new look. The 2xxxx series builds have proven compatibility with most Windows applications, so there is little to worry about when it comes to harmonizing existing code with the new operating system.

Some of the main Windows 10 features are being retired. For example, live tiles are no longer supported. This changes how the application interacts with the Start menu, but does not affect the behavior of the application. Microsoft is developing a widget platform for applications that support the ability to quickly view the Outlook calendar and news and weather. A set of extensions that allow third-party access to notifications may be possible, but there is no public API for this feature yet.

Building applications for Windows 11

The important point is that you don’t have to stop developing Windows applications. The code I’m developing now works on Windows 11 without any problems. But technologies like Project Reunion are far more important than ever before in the overall Windows developer platform, so it’s worth thinking about how to use them to modernize older applications. new Windows Dev Center siteRelated tools and documentation are organized in

The new name for Project Reunion is the Windows App SDK. It may seem like a minor change at first glance, but it has a huge impact on Windows. When Microsoft has formalized it as the next-generation Windows SDK, it means saying goodbye to Win32 and WinRT and using Windows 11 as the starting point for a new suite of SDKs and APIs.

The Windows App SDK is not limited to Windows 11. Windows 10 will continue to be supported and used for years to come (especially if Microsoft continues to rule out as many CPUs as it does now in Windows 11 updates). This means that developers will continue to write Windows 10 code in the future. The Windows App SDK also builds backwards-compatible code with Windows 11 apps, so switching from Win32 or WinRT to the Windows App SDK should be easy. Apps currently built for Windows 11 are backwards compatible until the 1809 Windows 10 release.

The 0.8 release of Build 2021 adds support for new Visual Studio releases and updates the WinUI 3 components. Packaged MSIX applications are supported, and unpackaged apps (available through the new Windows Store) are supported experimentally. The 1.0 release is scheduled for Q4 2021 and adds push notification support for both, along with full application lifecycle support for packaged and unpackaged code.

Of course, that’s not to say that you can build code that works on both Windows 10 and Windows 11 without any problems. Above all, significant architectural changes are made in elements such as the Action Center, so code that adapts to both APIs is required. There are also new features in Windows 11, such as widgets that replace Live Tiles. Microsoft has yet to announce how it will open up these new features to third-party developers.

Using the new UI in your application

Improvements in WinUI 3 focus on supporting the new look of the Windows 11 window environment. Notable features include the rounded corners of the window, new fonts, and a new set of icons. The update adds new materials, including Material Design in the Windows Fluent Design language.

The new option, Mica, is opaque, while Acrylic is translucent. This will change the role of acrylic, which is currently only used for temporary UI elements that are superimposed on top of the existing UI, such as flyouts and dropdowns. Mica is for permanent UI like menu bar, chooses background color from desktop (automatically supports light mode and dark mode). Another material, Smoke, is used to blur app content and windows when other UI elements, such as dialogs, that obscure the existing UI are displayed.

When Microsoft updates the WinUI controls to take advantage of these new materials, they are automatically applied to your code. The new look has already been applied to many of Windows 11’s built-in tools, so you can preview how it will look when used in your own code.

If you’re a developer building HTML-based applications, Windows 11 includes an evergreen version of the WebView 2 control, so your applications always have access to the latest Chromium features. Microsoft is using this feature to support next week’s update of Teams, which is not Electron, but will be a WebView 2 app that uses far fewer system resources.

new windows store

The biggest change is the way applications are distributed following a major change in the Windows Store. It’s redesigned and the way you find apps changes. The internal changes are bigger than the external ones, and they affect everyone who builds Windows applications.

Best of all, there are no restrictions on application packaging. While the Windows 10 Store was limited to appx and MSIX packaged code, the new store adds support for packaged and unpackaged Win32 code, .NET applications (both using standard XAML and Xamarin), and Java installers. Web-based applications built using React Native and Electron and Microsoft’s own WebView2 and Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are also supported. The new version of PWABuilder allows developers to create and publish apps based on existing and new HTML and JavaScript content.

Opening the store to a wider range of applications is a pragmatic decision. This is because a large number of existing applications can run as it is in Windows 11. New distribution channels and, more importantly, new revenue streams for legacy apps. Microsoft isn’t just opening the store to more apps, it’s also allowing developers to bring their own payment engines. Selling enterprise tools through the Store eliminates the need to pay a 15% commission to Microsoft. They provide their own payment service so they can take all the profits themselves.

Other announced features include support for Android apps built using Amazon’s App Store API. However, since the initial build did not include this feature, it is not yet known how the app will work on Windows.

Windows 11 is a mix of familiarity and novelty, and Microsoft is focused on ensuring backwards compatibility so that you can continue to develop new code while easily bringing older apps to the new operating system. It’s well worth installing the Insider build to test your code and experiment with the new Windows App SDK. Alternatively, you can use Test Base, a Microsoft preview testing environment hosted in the cloud. The test base is Windows 11 build applied and can be automated through Azure DevOps. [email protected]


Source: ITWorld Korea by www.itworld.co.kr.

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