Installation of Windows Phone SDK 8.0 on Windows 7

In order to ignite my comeback to the community I decided to start from Windows Phone development. First of all, I downloaded WPSDK 8 and start it installation on my good old Windows 7 x64 machine.


What’s the hack? Why it wants me to install Windows 8 with all those tiles on my screen? Digging deeper inside the reasons, I found that the root cause of this strange requirement is WP (not Word Press, Windows Phone) emulator which takes advantage on Hyper-V technology on Windows 8. But who cares about it. Real heroes can live without emulators. So, let’s start hacking WPSDK installer.

Let’s see first what WPExpress_full.exe is.  52 61 72 21 1a 07 00! SFX module detected. It’s CAB inside. Let’s see


Very nice. Let’s take a look onto main file (0). This is WiX installer. So let’s unpack this msi pack.


Interesting… Custom UI by using Burn and ManagedUx from WiX SDK. Other words without recreation of WiX project it is almost impossible to recover the installer. So even if

<UxBlocker ShortName="CheckX64runningWin2008ServerOrWin8" Type="Stop" Condition="(VersionNT < v6.1) OR ((VersionNT = v6.1) AND (NTProductType < 3)) OR (NOT VersionNT64)" DisplayText="#loc.Win8X64Block"/>

can be changed, we’ll be unable to recompile it. Let’s try the other way.

Inside manifest.xml we can find a list of all packets with it sources. So we can download all of those and install it one by one using the order from the manifest.

<Payload Id="ssceruntime_x64_msi" FilePath="packages\SSCE40\SSCERuntime_x64-enu.exe" FileSize="2638632" Hash="E33F355F5E83D93099A732E2ECE02E07818B2696" CertificateRootPublicKeyIdentifier="D37F6D0F2894D56049061A44596FFA88CBFD1B5B" CertificateRootThumbprint="19F8F76F4655074509769C20349FFAECCECD217D" DownloadUrl=";clcid=0×409" Packaging="external" SourcePath="packages\SSCE40\SSCERuntime_x64-enu.exe" /><Payload Id="vcRuntimeMinimum_x64" FilePath="packages\vcRuntimeMinimum_amd64\vc_runtimeMinimum_x64.msi" FileSize="155648" Hash="CA08E6E42C30B01D27738E9F3191BEFF4C183D42" CertificateRootPublicKeyIdentifier="D37F6D0F2894D56049061A44596FFA88CBFD1B5B" CertificateRootThumbprint="19F8F76F4655074509769C20349FFAECCECD217D" DownloadUrl=";clcid=0×409" Packaging="external" SourcePath="packages\vcRuntimeMinimum_amd64\vc_runtimeMinimum_x64.msi" /><Payload Id="vcRuntimeAdditional_x86" FilePath="packages\vcRuntimeAdditional_x86\vc_runtimeAdditional_x86.msi" FileSize="155648" Hash="0BEB1DB386D9E75E68C9E35EA2C426548570DDBB" CertificateRootPublicKeyIdentifier="D37F6D0F2894D56049061A44596FFA88CBFD1B5B" CertificateRootThumbprint="19F8F76F4655074509769C20349FFAECCECD217D" DownloadUrl=";clcid=0×409" Packaging="external" SourcePath="packages\vcRuntimeAdditional_x86\vc_runtimeAdditional_x86.msi" />

This method works. However, when I installed it I found some other annoyances related to XAML editor, which crashes Blend (but old school default XML editor method works Smile) and Windows Phone 8 emulator is non-functional.

At the end we have WPDSK 7.1 fully functional, XML editor for XAML, non-functional emulator and voilà working WPDSK 8.0 running on Windows 7.

Is it good or bad thing – you decide. But, as always, do not be greedy and let developers work with their operating systems. Do not try to make people reinstall their work machines only for one SDK.

Be Sociable, Share!

By Tamir on February 18, 2013 · Posted in TECH

6 Comments | Post Comment

Maxim says:

Inspired by your post:

Posted on February 20th, 2013

Mateo says:

Could you please write it (for example my email : how to do it, I am not sure that I completely understand what have you written here. Just dont work, so I do something bad. Thanks a lot :)

Posted on March 22nd, 2013

Roy Alea says:

I used to be more than happy to seek out this net-site.I needed to thanks in your time for this excellent read!! I undoubtedly enjoying every little little bit of it and I’ve you bookmarked to check out new stuff you weblog post.

Posted on April 9th, 2013

Xfactor says:

but what the problem with win8 ?
20 min of instalation + VM
Win8 + start menue patch

How much time it cost you to discover this ?

Posted on May 12th, 2013

Shai says:

Hey Tamir,

First, great works the only one i’ve seen that said its possible to install WP8 SDK on win7 os (without VM)

I do have a problem though i tried downloading the 3 files from your links in the manifest.xml when i tried to install the first 2 i got this alert msgbox “This installation package is not supported by this processor type. Contact you product vendor”
my CPU is intel core2 duo e7500 2.93GHZ and my os is Win7 32bit version
Do you know if there is anything to work around that? or if the first 2 installation are even needed if i only need the SDK itself (the 3rd file does start to run and to install but i didnt finish it because i wanted to check with you first)
and i noticed that the first file is just SQL compact which i already have SQL on my pc

Posted on July 24th, 2013

Andrei Rinea says:

Interesting approach. Tried it too, barely worked. A lot of MSIs can’t be installed directly like this, they have install arguments specified in the manifest.

After all the futzing around I managed to get VS 2012 on Windows 7 to create/open WP8 projects and successfully build them.

However connecting my unlocked WP8 device to the machine didn’t allow me to run the app on it. As for the emulator, no chance.

Posted on August 6th, 2013