Is your website ready for Windows 10 ?

Microsoft Edge Logo - Website

Hello!

Windows 10 has been in the market for a month now following the official launch on July 29. Since then, the new OS has been gaining ground super fast and in less than a month Windows 10 was running on more than 75 million devices! And growing. Well, that’s great news for web developers as well. Especially, that the new Windows comes with a whole new Browser that is built for the modern web!

Microsoft Edge is the default browser running on Windows 10, on those 75 Million devices and aiming at 1 Billion devices. Well, I wouldn’t want my website to miss on that! As a web developer or website owner , I would be concerned about having my website look and perform it’s best on that browser.

Good thing is that the Microsoft Edge is based on a new browser engine that is better than ever. A browser that can render the web more correctly, swiftly, and reliably. As a web developer working with web standards, you will find that Microsoft Edge should just work like other browsers. It is more interoperable with other browsers which makes it easier than ever to develop websites site that works everywhere.

Nevertheless, it is still important that you check your website on Edge and scan it for issues. The free cross platform tools on Edge Dev Center allows you to test and debug your website. It can help your website even if you are not interested in testing it for Edge. With these tools you can run a quick code scan on your website URL to check for out-of-date libraries, layout issues, and accessibility. These are issues that you will find in all modern browsers as it is based on web and HTML5 standards.

The website

The are some issues because you added custom code to support non-standard modes and legacy browser engines. With Edge, you can clean your HTML from these. From simple document declaration <!DOCTYPE html> which the the standard DOCTYPE declaration for HTML5 that Microsoft Edge provides first class support for; as opposed to non-standard Document Mode meta tags like the following one:

<meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="Edge" />

To JavaScript enhancements such as using addEventListener in order to register an event handler instead of attachEvent to subscribe to the load event. The latter is a non-standard mechanism for adding events which was even deprecated  and entirely removed in IE 11, but some developers still use to support older versions of the browser and thus when you run on Microsoft Edge an error will be raised. The following example illustrates:

Old and Erroneous

window.attachEvent("onload", function () {

setTimeout(function () { alert(“I have been loaded!”); }, 100);

});

Interoperable

window.addEventListener("load", function () {

setTimeout(function () { alert(“I have been loaded!”); }, 100);

 });

You can always go to dev.modern.ie to learn more, check platform status and roadmap, give feedback and explore cool demos that showcase the platform features in practical examples.

I will be posting more around Microsoft Edge and the web on Windows 10.

Talk soon. Happy browsing!

Posted in Web Development, Windows 10 Tagged with: , ,

What you need to start developing for Windows 10!

Hello Developers!

Visual Studio 2015 with Windows developer tools

Now that Windows 10 is officially launched and the tools are released, everything is set and ready for you to start developing for Windows 10 (if you haven’t started yet). Moreover:

  • The Windows 10 SDK is out
  • The Store is open for Windows 10 apps

First, get your Windows 10 free upgrade. Next, download the tools for Windows 10 from here <https://dev.windows.com/en-us/downloads> which include Visual Studio 2015 with Windows developer tools. If you have Visual Studio already you can download the standalone Windows SDK for Windows 10 installer.

Now that you have the tools set, you can start with the coding.
As you might already know, with Windows 8.1 the concept of Universal Apps started crystallizing where by there was a shared code between 2 projects a Windows Phone 8.1 and a Windows 8.1. The 2 projects meant that you have 2 packages and you get to publish those packages to the separate stores and link them from there as a Universal Windows App. The Universal Windows app experience has significantly improved for Windows 10 from its Windows 8.1 predecessor. Now, with the single and unified Windows 10 core that is coupled with the Universal Windows Platform (UWP), there will be one app package to run across all platforms. Developers would now build one Universal Windows app that runs on all Windows 10 devices. That app can run on a Windows 10 phone, a Windows 10 desktop, or Xbox. It is actually the same app package and the developer can design the pages of that app to be adaptive and render properly on any device used to view them.
The following documentation demonstrates how to create Universal Windows apps (UWP) for Windows 10 devices.

Once you’re done, you might want to publish the app to the Store. The new unified Windows Dev Center has opened for Windows 10 app submissions. The dev center is accepting Windows 10 app packages that are built using the Windows 10 SDK released on July 29.

Hope that helps! I will leave you with this short video on how to install the tools and get started creating Universal Windows Platform apps for Windows 10

Happy Coding!

Posted in Windows 10

The First Windows 10 Bridge: Project Westminster

Hello Developers!

We are nearing the official launch of Windows 10 and the pace of Build releases has been speeding up in the past month to the fast ring. Last week, 2 releases (Build 10159 and 10162). The developer SDK is catching up as well, and on July 1st Microsoft released a new Windows 10 SDK Preview and the associated Windows 10 Mobile emulators. This SDK is to be used in conjunction with Windows 10 Insider Preview (Build 10158). The new Preview SDK contains bug fixes and changes to the API surface area.  You can download it from the Windows 10 Developer Tools page.

Which means, you can develop apps for Windows 10 if you haven’t started yet. There is a great Microsoft Virtual Academy course, A Developer’s Guide to Windows 10 that can get you up to speed. Windows 10 will be an exciting release for developers, with support for Universal Windows apps that run across all Windows 10 devices. The SDK allows you to develop for Windows 10, but it isn’t the only way to run apps on Windows 10. At Build 2015, Microsoft announced 4 new ways to get apps into the Windows 10 Store. Developers can reuse their Web code, Windows desktop applications (.NET code), Android apps (Java and C++), and iOS apps (Objective C). Collectively, these 4 ways are called Universal Windows Platform Bridges. These platform bridges consist of a toolkit of three components: developer tools, Store ingestion processing, and Universal Windows Platform runtime frameworks.

The First Platform Bridge: Project Westminster

Yesterday, Microsoft released Project Westminster, the first of the Universal Windows Platform Bridges.  Project Westminster basically allows developers to leverage their existing web development workflow and publish their responsive websites to the Windows 10 Store as Windows apps. These published websites are called Hosted Web Apps, since the majority of the content is being served from the website.
This Platform bridge also makes it even easier to integrate a web app with Windows features like Cortana voice commands and authentication. Because, the platform capabilities are only available when the site is running as a Universal Windows Platform App in the App Host on Windows 10. The web app will not be able to call platform APIs when navigated to in Microsoft Edge or other browsers.

If you want to learn more details about this platform bridge, how it works and its capabilities you can check this blog post by the Windows Apps Team.

I will leave you with this short video on creating Hosted Web Apps with Project Westminster

Posted in Windows 10 Tagged with: ,

Check if your website is mobile friendly

Hola!

mobile-checkerToday, I came across a great tool for web developers! The tool is by W3C and called “The Mobile Checker“, it provides you with an emulation close to what your Web app looks like on different kinds of mobile devices, including tablets and smartphones. So, you can have a better idea on how mobile friendly your website is. This is critical, if you want your website to appear in search results on mobile devices, especially after Google and Bing started favoring mobile-friendly websites in their search results.
You want your website/web app to be relevant on the mobile devices, you gotta make sure it works better on mobile devices.

The Mobile Checker provides a new and helpful experience of mobile Web development. The project is available on GitHub and is still in Alpha at the time of writing, you can join and contribute https://github.com/w3c/Mobile-Checker

If you are curious about how it works, the Mobile Checker is a basically a JavaScript Web application built with Node.js and Selenium WebDriver. The tool uses the web browser emulator API and other powerful technologies to simulate a Web browser on a mobile device. The authors/founders claim that this tool contrary to most of the current online mobile emulators, can provide an emulation close to what your Web app looks like on different kinds of mobile devices, including tablets and smartphones.

Put it to the test and feel free to let me know how it compares to the emulator that is available through the browser developer tools on Microsoft Edge  and Chrome.

Cheers!

Posted in Web Development Tagged with:

How to run localhost websites on Microsoft Edge

Hello!
You might have already heard that Windows 10 will run Microsoft Edge an all-new browser that’s built to give you a better web experience. Microsoft Edge is the browser for the modern web. If you are developer you might be really interested in the Dev center for the new browser, you can check it on this link http://dev.modern.ie/. There you will find lots of tools and resources and you can also:

  • Check Platform Status
  • Test and debug your site with free tools
  • Explore Demos
  • View standards roadmap
  • Give feedback and suggest features
  • Get Support

Anyways, back to the main topic. How to run/debug a localhost website on Microsoft Edge. You most likely will run/debug a website locally on Edge since it the default Browser of Windows 10. Problem arises when you do so and you will have an error, something like the following screenshot(Build 10130):

 

This happens because Edge runs as a Windows modern app different from IE and thus it is has network isolation by default for security reasons. In order to resolve this issue, we need to enable loopback and debug the localhost server by running the following command from an elevated shell (which I found in the FAQs page on MSEdge Dev) :

For Build 10158 or newer:

CheckNetIsolation LoopbackExempt -a -n=Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe

For previous builds:

CheckNetIsolation LoopbackExempt -a -n=Microsoft.Windows.Spartan_cw5n1h2txyewy

The previous command uses the App container name parameter “n“.

You can read more on loopback exemption and network isolation in Windows Runtime apps on this MSDN article.

Happy browsing!

Posted in Web Development Tagged with: ,
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