Every once in a while when I am cleaning up my Pocket account and the collection of links I store there while browsing the web and my RSS feeds I usually come across quite a few that have never made their way to this site to be shared with all of you.

So today I wanted to catch you up on some of these important resources that may be of some assistance and help you in your own development work.

These items come from across the Microsoft stack and are in no particular order.

Desktop Bridge

Desktop Bridge: Smooth User Transition and Data Migration - If you are already working with this bridge to port your Windows desktop software to the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) as an app then this article will help you make user data available across all Windows 10 devices for your users.

Desktop Bridge: Creators Update - This article highlights all of the new features available in the Desktop Bridge for apps targeting the upcoming Windows 10 Creators Update.

Note: If you want to learn more about the Desktop Bridge and get started moving your desktop software to the Windows Store then visit the Windows Apps Desktop Bridge portal.

Windows 10 Software Development Kit (SDK)

As the Windows 10 Creators Update gets closer to release, which is expected in late March or early April, Microsoft releases preview builds of the associated SDK. This allows developers to continue building and testing their apps that are looking to use new features available in the Creators Update.

This week Microsoft released Build 15052 of the Windows 10 SDK for developers which has been featured complete since Build 15021.

Developing Applications on Microsoft Azure and Office 365

An area that some developers might not be looking at for opportunities is building apps that use Microsoft's major cloud services like Azure and Office 365.

There are many areas available that are outside your typical app store collections that might just allow your business to grow by creating and supporting these services.

The Developing Applications on Microsoft Azure and Office 365 article provides a three tiered plan to get started on your Azure and Office 365 development plus links to other resources to help you learn about that development environment.

Windows Developer Evaluation Virtual Machines

New version of these VMs has been uploaded to the Windows Dev Center and contains the updates for February 2017 in them.

These VMs are available for Hyper-V, Virtualbox, and VMWare and they expire on 21 May 2017. Inside of these downloads you will find the following OS's and software that will provide you a ready made development environment:

  • Windows 10 Enterprise Evaluation, Version 1607
  • Visual Studio 2015 Community Update 3 (Build 14.0.25425.01)
  • Windows developer SDK and tools (Build 14393)
  • Microsoft Azure SDK for .NET (Build 2.9.6)
  • Windows UWP samples (Feb 2017 Update)
  • Bash on Ubuntu on Windows

Adding Inking Support to Your App

As more touch screens and pen ready devices are coming to market more users are going to want to interact with those apps with not only touch but by inking within them as well.

By updating your app to support Inking in Windows 10 you can give your user not only a new way to interact and control your app/service but you also give them a new input method through natural writing.

Of course, all of the tools are there to make this a straight forward process so this Channel 9 video will help you learn how to add this capability to your own apps in the Windows Store.

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