Oct 242013
 

Time for a quick timeout — It recently came to my attention that the Aussie Wine Guy app for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 is doing a pretty decent trade.  It’s ranked amongst the top apps in the competitive Food & Dining category in the Windows App Store.App Store

This is really an awesome and encouraging result.  Although I don’t get nearly half as much time as I used to have to publish more content on the AWG website, it is really great to see the app hitting some decent adoption numbers – well over 300 downloads since it was published in late April this year.

Apps that publish content are a great example of the advantages of full screen viewing, and the Aussie Wine Guy app provides plenty of insight into the world of excellent wine and accessories.

Check out more details on the Aussie Wine Guy website.. and please, keep on downloading and reading!

Aussie Wine Guy App

Aug 042013
 

imageThis is a quick tip for those running Windows 8 who encounter this occasional problem where the Windows Explorer doesn’t display image thumbnails.

Now, I’m going to assume that you’ve already checked the Explorer settings, and so on.  This fixes a condition where the thumbnails appear very briefly (they flicker on then off) before displaying the default icon.  The standard settings don’t have any effect.

The trick is to delete the local icon cache.  The steps are relatively easy – first make sure you have killed all instances of explorer.exe before beginning.  Best way is to fire up Task Manager and end any explorer.exe process.  Then run a command line (as administrator if UAC is enabled). 

At the prompt type:

  • cd /d %userprofile%\AppData\Local
  • del IconCache.db /a
  • cd\
  • explorer

This will delete the local icon cache and reload an explorer instance.  It works for me.

May 032013
 

If you are a user of the new “Windows to Go” feature of Windows 8 Enterprise edition, which enables you to boot and run the Windows 8 operating system off an external USB device, you may have noticed something odd when trying to use the Windows App Store:

no-go

In a nutshell: “Windows Store isn’t available on Windows To Go workspaces”.

How to fix?

This seemed odd to me, I can’t think of any technical reason why this might be the case, especially given Windows to Go still has the full formerly-known-as-Metro user interface.  Then I stumbled across this blog article on the MSDN blogs site which pondered the same question.

It appears that the Windows Store is locked down by Group Policy for unknown reasons, I suspect due to paranoia (key term here is ‘Enterprise’, after all).

I don’t want to steal the thunder of the original article, but for brevity – the steps to unlocking require a change to the system’s group policy.  Here’s a paraphrasing of the steps outlined in the original MSDN blog article:

  1. Open the Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc) – for local policy
  2. Go to Computer Configuration/Administrative templates\Windows Components\Store. Go to the “Allow Store to install apps on Windows To Go workspaces” policy.
  3. Enable & Apply

Sometimes you might want to make this apply right away, to do so open a Command Prompt and gpupdate /force

This worked for me Smile

Note that this applies to the local Group Policy and may be superseded by a domain-level Group Policy.

Still no joy?

If you still have issues, perhaps you may need to make a registry change, first noted here.  This may have unintended consequences but I can’t think of any off the top of my head, so why not give it a try (worst case, you can restore the registry value to the default):

  1. Open the Registry Editor (regedit), you should be prompted for permission elevation (under UAC)
  2. Navigate/expand to the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control
  3. Find the following DWORD value: PortableOperatingSystem
  4. Change the value from 1 to 0 and reboot the system

 

If you’ve made these changes, of course you will be able to download the Sanders Technology Digest application – here’s a handy link..  Or why not try the Windows Store directly?

/R

May 012013
 

Last month I submitted an App to the Windows App Store.  The App, Sanders Technology Digest, is a Windows 8 App which uses articles from this site and provides full screen article views, content searches and better sharing support.

The inaugural version (1.0) has now been published!  Click here to see the App on the Windows Store.  If you are running Windows 8, you can use this direct link in the App Store.

The App provides a somewhat useful amount of functionality and depending on how popular it is, I’ll consider putting more effort into extending the app to establish deeper functionality.  Here are some screen shots of the new app!

 main-page_thumb share-mail_thumb
Main application / Share view

article-view_thumb category-view_thumb
Article view / Category view

content-search_thumb
Content search

I’ll be posting another article with an overview to the App submission process, including copious amounts of screenshots. 

The App is now live, and it’s free, so please download!

app-add3

Oct 312012
 

As the BUILD conference (formerly PDC) kicks off in Redmond, we are finally treated to the official launch of the long, long awaited Windows Phone 8 SDK.

Held under wraps for months, with precious few copies of the pre-release being seen, this SDK has been a long time coming.  The only way to get an early look at the unfinished SDK was through hard core NDA agreements, and even these were strictly limited.  One copy leaked onto the Internet, but it was extremely early and offered very few insights into the platform itself.

The official reason for delaying the SDK?  It was held back due to sensitivities around “unannounced features” in the Windows Phone 8 platform (which the SDK ROM image would give away).  At any rate, from today we all finally get a look in at what the future holds for apps development on the new Windows phone platform.

To jump straight into the SDK, check out the What’s new page on MSDN.  If, for some weird reason, you’d prefer to read some marketing hype around the platform, perhaps have a read over here at the Windows phone site.

Finally.. Download the SDK