Visual Studio 2013 – Update 2 is available

May 14, 2014 .NET, .NET Framework, .NET Framework 4.5.2, Azure SDK, Microsoft, SQL Server 2014, Trial Downloads, Updates, Visual Studio 2013, VisualStudio, VS2013, Windows, Windows 8, Windows 8 apps development, Windows 8.1, Windows Azure Development, Windows Phone, Windows Phone 8, Windows Phone 8.0 SDK, Windows Phone Development, Windows Phone Store, Windows Store, Windows Store Development, Windowz Azure, XBOX Development No comments

Microsoft has released the latest update for Visual Studio 2013 with major improvements including support for developing Universal apps for Windows 8.x, Win Phone, and XBOX.

Here are the list of improvements included as part of the release(lending from Visual Studio team blog):

Visual Studio 2013 Update 2 has many new capabilities as well as fixes that address bugs, customer feedback, performance, and reliability improvements. Here are some new capabilities that are part of this and related Updates and links to where you can find more info.

  • Universal Apps. With this release you can now build universal apps that can run on Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 while sharing code and assets through shared projects.
  • TypeScript. The TypeScript language is a typed superset of JavaScript that compiles to plain JavaScript. As a typed language you can define classes, modules and interfaces that compiles to JavaScript and runs in any browser.
  • Web Tool. Our web development tools have many new features like SCSS support, a new JSON editor, updated ASP.NET templates, and an improved URL picker.
  • Azure tools. It’s easier to take advantage of Azure with options to create websites and SQL Azure databases directly on Azure for simpler deployment to a development / testing environment.
  • Diagnostics. Our diagnostics tools also got some enhancements. Performance events now let you navigate to user code for MVC Methods or jump to the SQL command for database queries. It is also possible to view the Windows Store diagnostics tools at the same time to see all your diagnostics information on a shared timeline.
  • Slipstream install. You can download Visual Studio with all its latest features from one install that includes Visual Studio 2013 RTM and Update 2 for Visual Studio.

There are a number of other important updates that are available today in addition to Update 2 for Visual Studio 2013:

  • Apache Cordova and Visual Studio. Cordova tools in Visual Studio let web developers build cross-platform mobile applications targeting Android, iOS, Windows and Windows Phone using use their existing skills in HTML and JavaScript. To learn more about Apache Cordova visit
  • A cloud optimized .NET. The latest updates to the framework provide a cloud optimized mode that is smaller, lighter weight, and designed for cloud and server workloads.
  • .Net vNext. This update to the .Net framework is optimized for cloud-first and mobile-first development. It enables you to compile C# 6 and VB code with Roslyn compilers, speed up Windows Store apps with the .NET Native ahead of time compiler, and has a cloud optimized mode for ASP.NET apps.
  • TFS 2013 Update 2. It’s worth mentioning again the updates in TFS 2013 like improvements for tagging, charting, shared parameters, cloud load testing application analytics, and a lot more.

Check out Somasegar’s Blog and Brian Harry’s Blog to get more details on some of the highlights in this release. For a quick view at all the features and fixes included in this update go to the KB article.


Visual Studio 2013 – Update 2 (Web / ISO)

Kinect for Windows–Development–Required Hardware’s

August 15, 2012 .NET, .NET Framework, All, Kinect SDK, KnowledgeBase, Microsoft, Microsoft SDKs, MSDN, VisualStudio, VS2010, Windows, Windows 7, Windows 8, XBOX No comments

Abstract: The purpose of this blog post is to provide some insight in to hardware’s and software’s required for kinect for windows development.


Kinect for Windows PC is a special set of Kinect hardware released by Microsoft, that designed to use with Windows PC. You require this piece of hardware of production usage of applications developed with Kinect SDK for Windows.

Kinect for Windows hardware is tested, optimized, and designed to operate on computers running Windows 7, Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Windows Embedded Standard 7, and Windows Embedded POSReady 7. It also provides a fully supported end-user experience.


Kinect for windows developer kit is now available in INDIA for a price of 18-20k (price depends on listing at different online stores) or you can choose to buy from official Microsoft Resellers.

The Kinect for Windows sensor is easy to use. All you need is a sensor, PC, and Kinect for Windows application**.

To use a Kinect for Windows sensor you will need a PC with the following:
  • Windows 7, Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Windows Embedded Standard 7, or Windows Embedded POSReady 7.
  • 32 bit (x86) or 64 bit (x64) processor
  • Dual-core 2.66-GHz or faster processor
  • Dedicated USB 2.0 bus
  • 2 GB RAM

** To use Kinect for Windows with a Windows PC requires a software SDK to be installed on your target development/deployment system. Kinect SDK for Windows contains necessary drivers and API’s for communicating to Kinect Sensor from a supported Windows Operating system.

The Kinect for Windows SDK enables developers to use C++, C#, or Visual Basic to create applications that support gesture and voice recognition by using the Kinect for Windows sensor and a PC or embedded device.

I found some listings on EBAY.IN which will be useful if you are planning to develop Kinect based applications.

Kinect Wall Mount

Kinect for Windows (Retail version for Indian Region – Box Packed)


Kinect USB – AC Adaptor (this adaptor is required to connect an Kinect for XBox 360 or Kinect for Windows hardware to Windows PC through USB interface ***)


*** If you have Kinect for Windows box bundle – you would not have to occupy this package separately as bundle includes Kinect for Windows sensor and necessary usb adaptor cable.

Can I use my Kinect for XBOX 360 for Kinect Development?

Kinect for XBOX 360 is the earlier version of Kinect specially released for XBOX 360 gaming consoles. Which provides more tight integration(developed specifically to utilize the capabilities of XBOX) with existing XBOX devices.

YES, as per Microsoft license agreement Kinect for XBOX 360 can be used for personal and non-commercial uses using Kinect for Windows SDK v1.0, but you will not be able to experience the certain features such a near mode**** on Kinect for XBOX 360. 

But for distribution or production deployment you will definitely needs to have commercial or retail version of Kinect for Windows.

For more detail FAQ visit here

**** Near mode is a feature available with Kinect for Windows alone, users who are seated or standing can be tracked within 40 cm (16 inches) of the sensor

The chart below shows the versions of the Kinect for Windows SDK and associated Kinect sensors and runtime.


SDK beta 2 rights expire June 16, 2016

Latest version for Kinect SDK for Windows v1.5 includes the features such as Facial Recognition, more accurate Facial and Skeleton tracking etc. At the time of writing this blog post I haven’t evaluated whether Kinect for XBOX 360 works with v1.5 of the SDK. But assumes that you will be able to use it for personal and non commercial development purposes.

Remember if you want to deploy it for production usage, you would definitely need a Kinect for Windows hardware.

Hope this blog is helpful for you.

Image & Information Courtesy: Microsoft Kinect for Windows website

Additional Links:

Kinect FAQ | Microsoft Kinect for Windows

Kinect for Windows Near Mode

Near Mode: What it is (and isn’t) – Kinect for Windows Blog – Site

Kinect for Windows 1.5 Released With Facial, Skeletal Tracking

Kinect for XBOX 360

Kinect for Windows(SKU: L6M-00015) – Official Reseller INDIA

Buy Kinect for Windows and other peripherals from Microsoft Store

Kinect for Windows Developer Toolkit v1.5.2

August 11, 2012 .NET, All, Kinect SDK, Microsoft, Microsoft SDKs, VisualStudio, Windows, XBOX No comments

The Kinect for Windows Developer Toolkit contains source code samples, Kinect Studio, Face Tracking SDK, and other resources to simplify developing Kinect for Windows applications.

Kinect for Windows Developer Toolkit v 1.5.2 is an incremental update to previous Kinect for Windows Developer Toolkit 1.5.

The release of Developer Toolkit update v1.5.2, which includes:

  • WPFD3Dinterop. This new sample demonstrates DirectX 11 interoperability with Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), which enables powerful DirectX rendering composed with quicker-to-develop WPF user interfaces.
  • Improved Kinect Studio playback. Fixed a known issue from version 1.5.1 of Kinect Studio to ensure that depth-to-color mapping works properly, even if you play an XED clip on a machine without the identical Kinect sensor that recorded it.
<code>&lt;li&gt;If you have already installed the Kinect for Windows SDK, simply download the new v1.5.2 Developer Toolkit Update. &lt;/li&gt;    &lt;li&gt;If you are new to Kinect for Windows, download both the Kinect for Windows SDK v1.5 and the Developer Toolkit v1.5.2. &lt;/li&gt;   &lt;p&gt;&amp;#160;&lt;/p&gt;  &lt;p&gt;Download &lt;a href=""&gt;&lt;strong&gt;Kinect for Windows Developer Toolkit v1.5.2&lt;/strong&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;  &lt;p&gt;&lt;strong&gt;&lt;font color="#ff0000"&gt;&lt;u&gt;Note:&lt;/u&gt;&lt;/font&gt;&lt;/strong&gt; The Kinect for Windows Developer Toolkit requires that the &lt;a href=""&gt;&lt;u&gt;&lt;em&gt;&lt;strong&gt;Kinect for Windows SDK v1.5&lt;/strong&gt;&lt;/em&gt;&lt;/u&gt;&lt;/a&gt; be installed&lt;/p&gt;  &lt;p&gt;&lt;strong&gt;&lt;u&gt;&lt;font color="#ffc000"&gt;Source&lt;/font&gt;&lt;/u&gt;&lt;/strong&gt; - From Team Blog Post: &lt;a href="/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/kinect-for-windows-developer-toolkit-update-v1-5-2.aspx"&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;  &lt;p&gt;&lt;a href=""&gt;Developer Download&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;  &lt;p&gt;&lt;a href=""&gt;Release Notes&lt;/a&gt;

Help: Kinect SDK for Windows – Code Migration Steps from Beta 2– v1.0

February 16, 2012 .NET, .NET Framework, All, Kinect SDK, Microsoft, Microsoft SDKs, VisualStudio, VS2010, XBOX No comments

Kinect SDK for Windows v1.0 is a major release by Microsoft enabling the use of Kinect on Windows Platforms. Windows7/8 users can now interface Kinect to your Windows PC and develop programs that is capable of utilizing the capabilities of Kinect Sensor.

There have been a number of significant changes and improvements in Kinect SDK – APIs since Beta2. So it developer who has done application development using Beta versions of Kinect SDK will have to face a challenging task of migrating their existing code to support Kinect SDK for Windows final version.

Luckily Rob Relyea, has a put on a nice blog covering all migration steps to follow to make your application built on top of Kinect SDK compatible to Kinect SDK for Windows v1.0

Rob’s steps have clearly documented the API changes between BETA 2 to v1.0.

Read through Rob’s Blog on Kinect 4 Windows Code Migration from Beta 2 to v1.0

Rob also provided a Code migration helper DLL, that will help us in migrating our code.

Microsoft.Kinect.Migration.dll   – After installing older versions of Kinect SDK and installing v1.0 of SDK, add reference to this DLL and build your project you will see necessary guidance as build error/warnings.

The migration method using Microsoft.Kinect.Migration.dll is recommended by Rob and myself, as it help us in understand where to make changes in our existing code.

Use these Migration steps suggested by Rob on his blog.

Using the Migration reference assembly (RECOMMENDED) Microsoft.Kinect.Migration.dll

  •   Backup code projects (if not using source   control, such as TFS)
  •   Uninstall Beta 2 SDK (including speech runtime   10.x components).
  •   Install Kinect for Windows SDK v1.
  •   Remove Microsoft.Research.Kinect.dll   references
  •   Download (link is fixed now, may need to clear browser cache if still having problems) and add reference to Microsoft.Kinect.Migration.dll
  •   [Ensure all projects, including binary dependencies,   are migrated]
  •   Build and evaluate errors/warnings

After changing all the “usings” of the old namespace to “using   Microsoft.Kinect;”, most of the errors/warnings will point you to renames of   types/members:

  •   Look for guidance in errors/warnings
  •   Look at sample code in SDK to see changes in   event handling code necessary (there have been significant changes with   ImageFrame and SkeletonFrame).
  •   Change code as necessary -> recompile ->   (repeat)
  •   After building successfully with no errors and   warnings (related to name changes)
    •   Remove reference to   Microsoft.Kinect.Migration.dll
    •   Add reference to Microsoft.Kinect.dll
    •   Run application and debug as necessary

Read more on API Changes on Rob’s Blog

Kinect for Windows – Details of API Changes from Beta2 to v1.0 (C#/VB)

Kinect for Windows – Code Migration from Beta2 to v1.0 (C#/VB)

Thanks to Rob Relyea for such nice helpful resources..

Kinect for Windows Quickstart Series

February 2, 2012 .NET, .NET Framework, All, Kinect SDK, Microsoft, Microsoft SDKs, VisualStudio, VS2010, Windows, Windows 7, XBOX, XBOX Development No comments

Channel 9 – MSDN has a new updated set of Quick Start tutorials on Kinect for Windows.

Kinect for Windows Quickstart Series – consists of the following topics in tutorial series.

  • Installing and Using the Kinect Sensor
  • Setting up your Development Environment
  • Camera Fundamentals
  • Working with Depth Data
  • Skeletal Tracking Fundamentals
  • Audio Fundamentals

and some other interesting Projects on Kinect for Windows.

For more information visit announcement link

Kinect for Windows – Commercial Release

February 1, 2012 .NET, .NET Framework, All, DirectX, Hardware&Peripherals, Kinect SDK, Microsoft, Microsoft SDKs, VisualStudio, VS2010, Windows, Windows 7, Windows 8, XBOX, XBox, XBox Development, XBOX Development No comments

Microsoft has today released a commercial version of Kinect for Windows.

Kinect for Windows is a specific version of Kinect released only for interfacing Microsoft Kinect with your laptop or desktop with Windows 7. Kinect for Windows is available as a bundle package through Amazon and Microsoft Store for 249$.

Why Microsoft has released another Kinect edition?

Kinect for XBOX 360 are built specifically to interface with XBOX and it has been tweaked to work with XBOX programming API’s. What we realized when we used Kinect Controller for XBOX 360 on a PC, there is little performance difference in it. So Microsoft has made some tweaks to Microsoft Kinect for performance optimization in Windows, and this version of Kinect has been available as Kinect for Windows.

Not only that Microsoft has opt for a Hardware only Business model with Kinect for Windows. We have to get commercial hardware license for Kinect to use it in a commercial environment, but the software to use with it (Kinect SDK for Windows) is been released as FREE.

So you only will have to spend  for Buying hardware (Kinect for Windows), and Software license(Kinect SDK for Windows) is free.


The newly released Kinect for Windows hardware is optimized for use with computers and devices running Windows 7, Windows 8 developer preview (desktop applications only), and Windows Embedded-based devices.

Is it confusing for you, the terminologies? Don’t worry I will make it clear.

1. Kinect for Windows – a commercial version of Kinect sensor hardware for using with Windows

2. Kinect SDK for Windows – software for Kinect for Windows( which includes Kinect for Windows Drivers, API’s and Samples etc).

The Bundle and Availability

Kinect for Windows sensor is available as a bundle through amazon and Microsoft Store for Purchase.

The Bundle consists of

  • Kinect for Windows sensor
  • Manual
  • USB/power supply cable
  • and 1 year support and software updates

The Kinect for Windows sensor is available in the United States, for a suggested retail price of US $249. You will also be able to purchase Kinect for Window sensors in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Spain, and the United Kingdom. More countries will be added soon.

Note: The sensor unit does not ship with any software, and will only operate with an application developed for Kinect for Windows.


The Kinect of Windows sensor is intended to be used with the Kinect for Windows SDK and applications developed using the Kinect for Windows SDK and associated runtime software.

The SDK includes drivers, APIs, sample code and more.

Features of Kinect for Windows hardware and SDK

1. Commercial Ready – ready to use for commercial uses

2. Enhanced Sensor  – The Kinect for Windows sensor expands the possibilities for innovation with features like Near Mode, which enables the depth camera to see objects as close as 40 centimeters in front of the sensor. In addition, up to 4 Kinect sensors can now be plugged into the same computer.

3. Software Improvements

One of the many improvements to the Kinect for Windows SDK is improved skeletal tracking, which lets developers control which user is being tracked by the sensor. In addition, the latest Microsoft Speech components, along with an improved acoustic model significantly improve speech recognition accuracy.

4. Advanced Speech and audio capabilities

Provide the latest Microsoft Speech components and an updated English Language Pack for improved language recognition accuracy. In addition, the appropriate runtime components are now automatically installed with the runtime installer exe.

5. API Improvements

Enhances consistency and ease of development. New developers should have a much easier time learning how to develop with Kinect for Windows, and all developers will be more productive.

6. Shortening USB cable and small dongle

Ensure reliability across a broad range of computers and improves coexistence with other USB peripherals.

7. Support and software updates

The Kinect for Windows hardware includes a one-year warranty, support, and access to software updates for both speech and human tracking.


Software & Hardware Requirements

Hardware : 

  • 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
  • Dual-core 2.66 GHz or faster processor
  • Dedicated USB 2.0 bus
  • 2 GB RAM

Software :

  • Requires operating system is Windows 7 or Windows Embedded Standard 7

Small Update info on Kinect SDK for Windows BETA

The Kinect for Windows SDK beta can only be used with the Kinect for Xbox 360 hardware. Applications built with this hardware and software are for non-commercial development only. To accommodate existing non-commercial deployments using the SDK beta and the Kinect for Xbox 360 hardware, the beta license is being extended to June 16, 2016. Developers are encouraged to download the Kinect for Windows SDK, which was released February 1, 2012. This SDK provides additional features and updates.


This post is prepared based on the information available on, if you would like to know more on Kinect for Windows please visit the Kinect for Windows website.

Where to Purchase Kinect for Windows hardware ?

Download the Kinect for Windows SDK

Resources on Kinect for Windows hardware and SDK

FAQ’s on Kinect for Windows – SDK