Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Developers blocked from Windows 8.1 RTM version

The Windows 8.1 has been completed and labelled as RTM (release to manufacturing). However, the RTM version will not be accessible to developers which will be unable to test their apps for the new Windows version.

Best Windows 8 start screen
Microsoft announced yesterday that the source code for Windows 8.1 has been finalized and therefore given it the status of RTM and ready to be shipped to computer manufacturers. Traditionally, the RTM versions have been almost immediately made available for registered developers of the Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) and registered users of Microsoft Technet. However, this time around, Microsoft has changed its stance and no RTM version will be available for developers prior to the official release of Windows 8.1 which will happen in the middle of October.

The decision to block off developers from testing Windows 8.1 prior to its official release date has made the app developers furious. RTM versions have served an important purpose which is to allow the developers to properly test their apps on the final product to ensure that it works properly and fix eventual bugs. At the moment, it looks like the developers will have no way of ensuring that their apps actually work properly with the final version of Windows 8.1. Instead the developers are urged to test their software and apps using the Preview version of Windows 8.1. Since there are always large changes made between a Preview version and the final RTM version, this naturally upset the developers. Microsoft further claims that the RTM version may change as well up until the release date, which also is something new.

Microsoft has truly pulled some stunts in the last few years, most which have been incredibly unsuccessful. Hopefully this last stunt by Microsoft will not put another nail onto the Windows 8 coffin. To be frank, if the Windows 8.1 code is expected to change as Microsoft claims, the developers should still be allowed to have access to a proper test platform, something which should be obvious and trivial, instead of actively preventing developers from obtaining such a platform.

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