Windows 10 Technical Preview is Available–Time to Start Thinking About Compatibility
Every new version of Windows brings new features and opportunities for developers, but also some challenges with compatibility of existing applications. It’s never too early to plan ahead, so big thanks to Premier Developer consultants Maarten Van De Bospoort and Pat Altimore for this piece on Windows 10 compatibility.
The beginning of this month Windows 10 Technical Preview was announced and made available for download. Just like Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1, Windows 10 will have a high level of compatibility with its predecessor. Now that a preview is available, it’s a good idea to start planning to find any potential compatibility issues. Keep in mind though that this is an early preview and things will change before release.
Even the simplest changes in the OS can cause compatibility issues. For example, version checking causes a large portion of all compatibility issues when a new version of Windows is released. As a result, this influences the version number reported by Windows. It’s true. Windows 2000=5.0, Windows XP=5.1, Windows Vista=6.0, Windows 7=6.1, Windows 8=6.2, Windows 8.1=6.3. For more on version checking, one of this blog entry’s co-authors and Premier Developer consultant, Pat, has a post that talks about the version check issue and gives guidance on avoiding this potential issue.
What’s Been Cooking?
Windows 10 is poised to become the most successful version ever. So, why not get ahead of the curve? Let’s contemplate two different categories of applications. First, if you have an application that currently runs on Windows 7 or lower, you’ll want to test and fix your app for Windows 8.1. This is a released and stable version of the OS. To get started, Microsoft produces a “Compatibility Cookbook” document that details the changes to the OS that could affect compatibility. You can find the previous cookbooks here: Vista/Server 2008, Windows 7/Server 2008 R2, Windows 8/Server 2012. (The Windows 10 compatibility cookbook isn’t available at this time.)
Second, if your application is already running smoothly on Windows 8.1, you should try it out on Windows 10. Of course, keeping the afore-mentioned preview disclaimer in mind.
Premier Services for Developer
With Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 having reached and nearing end of support respectively, we have seen a recent spike in demand for app compatibility and remediation services in our Premier practice. Our consultants have years of application compatibility experience and they will be happy to assist you if you encounter seemingly insurmountable problems. As always, these services are available as part of your Premier Developer relationship so there’s no need to go through the lengthy process of contract add-ons or additional statements of work. Simply reach out to your ADM who can connect you with one of our Premier Developer consultants with expertise in this area.
Submit Your Feedback
Try out the new version of Windows today and test your application. If you have development feedback, the product group would like to hear it. Please submit it here. If you have questions or concerns that require a more in-depth discussion, your ADM will be able to facilitate that as well.