The Windows Store now includes traditional desktop apps

By Scorpus ยท 6 replies
Sep 15, 2016
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  1. Microsoft is making the Windows Store more useful by allowing traditional desktop apps into the mix. The Windows Store was previously restricted to apps built for the Universal Windows Platform (UWP), however a recent change now allows developers to publish their standard desktop apps through the marketplace with few (if any) modifications.

    This update has been made possible thanks to Microsoft's Project Centennial, which is a simple tool that helps developers repackage their desktop Win32 apps for the Windows Store. The tool doesn't convert Win32 apps into UWP apps, so the sandbox restrictions don't apply, but it does package in the Windows Store's slick installation and upgrade system.

    Project Centennial, now known as the Desktop App Converter, also includes tools to help developers integrate some aspects of UWP apps into their desktop apps. Making use of Windows 10's notification center is one such upgrade that developers can harness, along with other things like Live Tiles and Cortana integration.

    By allowing traditional desktop apps into the Windows Store, Microsoft is making the Store a more useful aspect of Windows for desktop users. Many desktop users don't bother installing UWP apps from the Store in favor of downloading their favorite Win32 apps through a browser, but Win32 apps are typically more cumbersome and annoying to install and update. Having Win32 apps in the Store could give the best of both worlds.

    One of the first Win32 apps in the Windows Store is Evernote, which has been repackaged for the Store with support for notifications and Live Tiles. The basic app functionality is the same as their previous desktop app, but it should be easier to download and update through the Store.

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  2. BSim500

    BSim500 TS Evangelist Posts: 390   +668

    Not really. Having proper grown-up desktop productivity applications not auto-update like your mobile is actually a good thing for many...
    Reehahs and psycros like this.
  3. MoeJoe

    MoeJoe TS Guru Posts: 711   +381

    Reehahs and BSim500 like this.
  4. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,875   +1,296

    Ain't it funny how some companies (and people) will do the smart thing only when they've exhausted all other options? This should have been their strategy from day one.

    "A PC is not a phone." - Everyone
    Reehahs, MoeJoe and BSim500 like this.
  5. Spence1115

    Spence1115 TS Enthusiast Posts: 49   +39

    Agreed, but that doesn't invalidate what that sentence says - that actually updating them is still more annoying than an auto update. Whether you want them to or not isn't the point here.
  6. BSim500

    BSim500 TS Evangelist Posts: 390   +668

    Until the auto-updated version breaks something and there's no previous version offline installer to roll back to... Same goes for freeware suddenly turning into adware / "freemium" - that last freeware version is always easily found, but on the Windows Store it will vanish. For all the ease of use "joys" of how 'apps' work on mobiles there's been more than a few that I'd had to spent ages hunting down the previous .apk version, then sideloading it after something gets "enhanced" beyond the competency level of the developer...
    psycros likes this.
  7. Gumpngreen

    Gumpngreen TS Rookie

    So much for Tim Sweeney's conspiracy theory about UWP.

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