Section 1. Your options for getting access to Microsoft technology

Depending upon your current situation you may be eligible to enroll of one of Microsoft’s great programs for Startups (BizSpark) and Students (DreamSpark).

Check out the respective sites for information on these programs.

Are you a student? See the Microsoft Student Account Sign-up Tutorial

Download the Windows 8 Enterprise 90 day free trial here


Section 2. Load and run Windows8

Windows 8 can be downloaded via several methods

  • Use the Windows 8 image we’ve prepared for this event with some other installs on it here
  • Download Windows 8 from your MSDN, BizSpark, or DreamSpark Premium account
  • Download the Windows 8 Enterprise 90 day free trial here

Using a Mac? You can still run Windows8 using one of the following techniques

BootCamp Windows 8

Virtualization On Mac

Section 3. Sign up for a Windows Store Account

This is required for submitting apps into the Windows Store. It is not required for development. There is a credit card or bank account verification step for security purposes that will require you to login to your bank’s website to verify a small test transaction amount. Please try to get your store account registered ahead of time.

Info: Registering for a Windows Store developer account

If you belong to BizSpark or DreamSpark you will have access to tokens for free store access.

DreamSpark users click here

BizSpark users click here

Don’t have either? Click here


Section 4. Load and run the basic developer tools

You have several options for developing Windows Store apps with Visual Studio.

· Download Visual Studio 2012 from your MSDN, BizSpark, or DreamSpark account.

If you don’t have the above access, you can get a free version of Visual Studio Express or a trial of Visual Studio (full version) below

· Download the free Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows 8 here

· Download the free Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Phone here

· Download a trial of Visual Studio 2012 here

In order to advertise, you simply need to do two things

· Sign up for Microsoft pubCenter at: Microsoft pubCenter

· Install the Ad SDK: Microsoft Advertising SDK


Section 5. Install the Free Game Frameworks

Both of the below game framework/dev environments can export to Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 (as well as other platforms)

Scirra Construct 2

Yoyo Games GameMaker


Section 6. Install some free cool tools that help you develop

InkScape (Open Source Vector Graphics Editor)

Gimp (Image Manipulation Program)

Paint.Net (Free Image Editor)

Jeremy Foster’s awesome resource page with links for stock photos, clipart, audio, music, and video


Section 7. Decision time, what kind of a developer do you want to be?

Regardless of what type of developer you are, everyone can benefit from the following resources

Windows Store App Labs are physical locations in more than 30 cities where you can access Windows 8 devices, get design help, and meet with Windows experts to make your app great. All for free!

  1. I’m a student without much skill OR just learning, let me use a framework.
    1. Scirra Construct 2
    2. Yoyo Games GameMaker
    3. Or get started with a free web based development environment TouchDevelop
  2. I’m a .NET Developer
    1. Jerry Nixon and Daren May’s Jumpstart series for XAML/C#:
      1. Programming in C# Jump Start
      2. Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps using C# Jump Start
    2. Building Apps for Both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 Jump Start Series
    3. MVVM Applied in Windows Phone and Windows 8
    4. Windows 8 Camp Training Kit
    5. Windows Store apps for Absolute Beginners with C#
  3. I’m an HTML/JavaScript developer
    1. Jeremy Foster and Michael Palermo’s Jumpstart series for HTML5
      1. Developing in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3 Jump Start
      2. Advanced Windows Store App Development with HTML5 Jump Start
    2. What Web Developers Need to Know to Develop Windows 8 Apps
    3. Develop High Performance Windows 8 Application with HTML5 and JavaScript | Best Practices & Tips
    4. Windows Store apps for Absolute Beginners with JavaScript
    5. Developing Windows Store Apps with JavaScript
    6. The best free book on HTML/JS Programming in Windows 8: Programming Windows 8 Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
  4. I’m an Android developer
    1. Resources for Android developers (Windows Store apps)
  5. I’m an iOS developer
    1. Resources for iOS developers (Windows Store apps)
    2. Windows Store App Development for iOS Developers

A list of some samples and starter kits is available here and don’t forget to check out the Dev Center for Design, Develop, and Marketing resources.

Section 8. Ok, now what? I need help.

Our ENTIRE West Region team is here to help you. Click the image below and find one closest to you and schedule time to talk to them. This is FREE and the entire team enjoys this part of their job so please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Click on the section labeled “Schedule an appointment’ to link to our oHours (office hours) page to book a time slot to Skype, chat, or in person meet.


That’s all you need to do to get ready to build your first application!



Appendix A – I just need some API references

Windows Store API Reference

Appendix B – I want to know about designing Windows 8 Applications