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Distributing Windows 8 Applications: Getting Started

Although a complete discussion of distributing Windows 8 applications is beyond the scope of this introductory content, it’s important to understand that for most applications, you’ll use the Microsoft Store as your distribution channel. Like the Apple App Store, the Microsoft Store is a curated experience—that is, applications must be “vetted” before they’re released to the public.

In order to create a Windows 8 application that can be distributed in the Microsoft Store, you need a developer license from Visual Studio. This developer license allows you to install and test your application locally, before Microsoft tests and certifies it for distribution in the Microsoft Store. You’ll find more information about working with the developer license here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/apps/hh974578.aspx.

The first time you attempt to create a Windows 8 application in Visual Studio 2012, you’ll see the dialog box shown in Figure 1. At this point, click I Agree, and then click Yes in the User Account Control dialog box should it appear, supply credentials from an existing Microsoft Account (or create a new one), and you’ll see the dialog box shown in Figure 2.

create a windows 8 developer license

Figure 1. Create a Developer License

windows 8 developer license

Figure 2. Success!

Given the developer license, you’re ready to start creating your first Windows 8 application.