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If you have installed Windows 8 Release Preview and Visual Studio 2012 RC, you might want to develop your first Windows 8 Metro Style Application. Unlike other version of Visual Studio, you need a Developer License to build your Win8 Metro apps. Without a developer license you won’t be able to deploy the app in your Windows 8 machine or Windows 8 simulator.


This blog post will help you to understand it better and will guide you to get a Free Developer License for Windows 8 Metro application development. Continue reading to get your developer license.


Can I develop Windows 8 Metro Apps without Developer License?

The straight forward answer to this is “No”. You can’t develop and deploy your Windows 8 Metro applications in your Win 8 environment or Win 8 simulator unless you have a Developer License synched with the PC. If you try to deploy the app without the license, you will get the error “Error: DEP0100: Deployment failed due to a Developer Licensing issue.” as shown in the following screenshot:


Windows 8 Developer License - Deployment Failed due to Developer License Issue


If you get such error, you can easily guess that, this is due to your device not synched for Developer License. By the way, Visual Studio will ask you to get one from Microsoft site. I will describe it in later parts.


For now, the developer license is available freely but who knows if Microsoft charges it in future like Windows Phone 7 application development. Till then develop, build and deploy your apps.


How to Get a Developer License for Windows 8?

The step is quite easy. You need just a Windows Live ID to get it done for now. As I mentioned above, the procedure is free till the time I am writing this blog entry but who knows if Microsoft charges for it in future releases!!!


The simple step to get the developer license is, build and try to deploy a Windows 8 Metro application. You can also acquire the developer license from the Project menu. To get the Developer License manually, go to “Project” menu –> Navigate to “Store” sub menu and click the sub menu item named “Acquire Developer License” as shown in the below screenshot:


Windows 8 Developer License - Acquire Developer License


This will ask you to get the developer license if you don’t have one or didn’t sync it with the development PC. Here is the screenshot of the dialog that will popup:


Windows 8 Developer License


Keep in mind that, you can use this developer license only for the purpose of developing, testing and evaluating Windows 8 metro apps. There are no link towards any terms & conditions, so just click “I Agree” button to proceed towards the next screen.


The next screen will contact the licensing server to get a developer license. If you cancel any one of this steps, you will not be able to build and test your apps until you get the license and sync with your device. Wait for few moments while it connects to the server.


Note: You must need an Internet Connection to get a developer license.


Windows 8 Developer License - Contacting License Server


After few moments, the process will popup the below Windows Live Sign-In page in the screen. Login with your Windows Live ID and Password to get the license. If you don’t have a Live ID yet, get the same by clicking the “Sign up” link as shown in the below screenshot:


Windows 8 Developer License - Sign-In with Live Account


Once logged-in, it will show you a confirmation message in the screen as shown below:


Windows 8 Developer License - Get the License


The above message window confirms that, you now have a developer license and you can now develop Metro apps for Windows 8 until the license expires. You have to renew your license before it expires to continue developing metro apps.


From the above license expiration date, we can see that, the license is valid for only one month and before the expiration, we have to renew it again. Till the time of writing this post, it is available freely but in later point of time, Microsoft may charge for it.


How to Renew the Developer License for Windows 8?

To renew the developer license for Windows 8 Metro application development, follow the above mentioned steps. In this case, you will get the Renew window as shown below:


Windows 8 Developer License - Renew Developer License


Click on “I Agree” to renew the developer license and sync your development PC by downloading the new license into the system.


End Note

If you didn’t yet install Windows 8 Release Preview and Visual Studio 2012 RC, you can check out my previous posts on Installation Experience of Windows 8 Release Preview and Installation Experience of Visual Studio 2012 RC.


I hope that, this small post was helpful for you to get a Windows 8 Developer License. Connect with me in Twitter, Facebook and Subscribe to the Newsletter or RSS Feed to get regular updates. Share this to your connection and leave a comment or queries below. Thanks for reading this post. Cheers.

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