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Is it technically possible to port Windows Store and UWP applications to Windows 7?

21/08/2016 15:06#1

Schezuk

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I will refer applications in Windows Store for either Windows 8/8.1 or Windows 10 as UWP applications as Wikipedia does, if I do not mistake it. Windows RT(not WinRT though) is not discussed to avoid confusion.

I wonder what API's no matter public or undocumented that Windows 8/8.1/10 have implemented that Windows Store and UWP applications rely on, so that they cannot be port to Windows 7, which is NT 6 as Windows 8/8.1/10 do.

If nothing much are there, but only due to M$'s market strategy to promote new technology'd Metro, there might have been some 3rd-party runtime/framework for Windows 7 on which Windows Store will work and UWP applications can run, which will surely spend no more effort and cause no more legal or compatibility trouble than Mono or Wine.

Edit: As How does Windows 8 Runtime (WinRT / Windows Store apps / Windows 10 Universal App) compare to Silverlight and WPF? says, it's a layer quite similar to .NET that lies between COM and application, if I didn't misread.

Is it technically possible to port Windows Store and UWP applications to Windows 7?

21/08/2016 17:49Top#2

Cody Gray

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It's not a marketing strategy by the evil M$, and writing things like that makes you look rather juvenile. There's a giant layer of code (arguably an entire operating system within an operating system) that was written to enable Metro/Modern/UWP apps to run in Windows 8, tweaked in 8.1, and further refined in 10. That layer simply isn't there in Windows 7, wasn't backported, isn't going to be backported, and can't reasonably be backported by a third party who lacks access to the undocumented details of the implementation.

There is no conspiracy afoot here. It is a simple matter of new operating systems supporting things that old operating systems don't. The new features that Windows 8/8.1/10 have implemented that Windows Store and UWP applications rely on is the entire notion of a Windows Store and a UWP application.

The version number ("NT 6", as you point out) doesn't matter. All that tells you is they didn't massively rewrite the kernel. You don't have to rewrite the kernel in order to write a new layer on top of it.

If you want to run Metro/Modern/UWP/Store applications, you need to update to a later version of Windows. Alternatively, you can just write a regular Win32 application, which will run on all versions of Windows, including the latest builds of Windows 10.

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