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Product: Windows Vista (32 & 64-bit)
Company: Microsoft
See Pricing  Purchase at
Review By: Andre Da Costa

with Byron Hinson & Fernando Fhualpa contributing

Developer Technologies in Vista - Part 2

Table Of Contents
1: Introduction
2: Pricing & System Requirements
Setup & Installation
4: Initial Impressions
5: Windows Activation 2 & Daily Usage
6: Connectivity & Networking
7: Application Compatibility, Control Panel, & Security
8: Windows Defender
9: Windows Internet Explorer 7
10: Windows Calendar, Mail, Meeting Space

11: Multimedia & Media Center
12: Windows Photo Gallery
13: Windows DVD Maker
14: Gaming in Windows Vista
15: DirectX 10 & Open AL
16: Graphic Card Performance & Misc Gaming
17: Windows Media Player 11
18: Windows Sidebar
19: Advanced Features

20: Backup, System Restore & Recovery
21: Windows ReadyBoost
22: Diagnostics & Performance Tools
23: Help/Support, Themes
24: The Forgotten Children
25: Developer Technologies in Vista
26: Developer Technologies 2
27: Memory Performance
Conclusion & Online Resources

WCF (Windows Communication Foundation)

It is the name for the set of communication and messaging technologies for developing connected applications on Windows. WCF is a platform for building secure, reliable, transactional distributed applications based on web service standards. Enables to build connected applications independent of network topology and based on broadly-adopted XML web services protocols, thus fostering interoperability with other XML web services platforms. WPF will unify a broad array of distributed systems capabilities in a compose-able and extensible way, spanning transports, security systems, messaging patterns, encodings, network topologies and hosting models.

Windows Workflow Foundation (WWF)

Windows Workflow Foundation is the programming model, engine and tools for quickly building workflow enabled applications on Windows. It provides tasks, activities and process automation (state management, flexibility), allowing to use integrated transactions through the workflow. In another words, WWF abstracts the logic of a process in an additional component, which provides services and is responsible of managing the execution flow of a whole program. Thus it supports well defined mechanisms that can offer the appropriate state and the transparency of a real-world process. 

Windows CardSpace

A framework developed by Microsoft which securely stores digital identities of an individual, and provides a unified interface for choosing the identity for a particular transaction. Windows CardSpace is a central part of Microsoft's approach to create a unified, secure and interoperable identity layer for the Internet, or Identity Metasystem.

CardSpace enables users to provide their digital identities in a familiar, secure and easy way. In the physical world we use business cards, credit cards and membership cards. In the online virtual world, with CardSpace we use a variety of virtual cards to identify ourselves, each retrieving data from an identity provider. This new paradigm will free users from fighting with usernames and passwords, by enabling them to just choose an information card.

Although the .Net Framework 3.0 is the managed code programming model, Windows vista also features other managed interfaces such as Windows Power Shell, the new command-line shell. Power Shell differs from other shells such as Cmd.exe in that it does not process text. In its place, it processes .NET framework objects. For the unmanaged C/C++ developer there are also new APIs, approximately 7125 spanned in the areas of Application Quality, Data Servers, Search, File System, Diagnostic Tools, Gaming, IE 7 Protected Mode, Installation and Update, Manageability, Media, Mobile, Secure Applications, Shell, System Internals, Tablet, Web Services Infrastructure (used by IIS 7), Collaboration, Networking (communication, management, protocols and security) and new visuals. These new APIs are the groundwork for Windows Vista Fundamentals technologies such as: 

User Account Control: Which increases security and manageability by enabling applications to run without administrator privileges.  This helps reduce the impact of malware, unintentional application defects, and unapproved system changes.

File and registry virtualization: Which enable many applications to automatically work on Windows Vista with standard user privileges.

Administrator Approval Mode: Which allows users with Administrator accounts to run most applications with limited privileges, only elevating when necessary to perform specific administrative tasks.

IE 7 protected mode: Which uses Windows Vista’s Mandatory Integrity Control infrastructure to run with low-rights. By running in a context with even fewer rights than a normal user, the risk of exploitation via malicious web sites is reduced even further.  By running at the low integrity level, IE will not be able to modify any of the user’s data or the Windows binaries on the machine.  Any files that are written will also be marked with the low integrity level, so downloaded apps in turn run at low integrity, adding an extra layer of security.

Windows Activation Service (WAS): Which provides a central broker that can take incoming network requests and route them to the appropriate service or application, reducing the need for developers to write custom NT services to manage their own service activation.  Having fewer services running with high local system privileges reduces the potential attack surface of the system.  WAS also provides process health monitoring and failure recycling for a more robust system.  Built-in support of poison queues for receiving messages that cannot be processed makes building fault-tolerant systems easier.

 « Developer Technologies in Vista Memory Performance »


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