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Along with the release of the new Windows Vista beta, developers are being treated to technologies to create applications for the new operating system. Microsoft Corp. last week gave developers access to the WinFX Runtime Components Beta 1 and the WinFX SDK (Software Development Kit).

The WinFX SDK contains documentation, samples and tools designed to help developers create managed applications and libraries using WinFX, which is the set of next-generation managed APIs provided by Microsoft, said John Montgomery, director of product management in Microsoft’s Developer Division, in Redmond, Wash.

The WinFX SDK will help developers build applications that use the .Net Framework 2.0, WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation) and WCF (Windows Communication Foundation), formerly code-named Avalon and Indigo, respectively.

The WinFX Runtime Components include versions of WPF, WCF, and “InfoCard” for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, Montgomery said. The new WinFX Runtime Components beta lets developers get an early start on using the managed code programming model that builds on the .Net Framework.

“I have yet to meet a developer that didn’t think that there are some very powerful improvements coming in WinFX, Avalon and Indigo,” said Patrick Hynds, chief technology officer of CriticalSites Inc., in Nashua, N.H.

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For security, Windows Vista “improves the Windows privilege model to help prevent users from running programs that attempt to perform operations the user doesn’t intend or authorize,” Montgomery said.

Windows Vista also features the NAP (Network Access Protection) framework, which requires clients to establish trustworthiness and compatibility before being given access. Developers use API-level access to NAP and the WFP (Windows Filtering Platform) to reduce user and administrator security workloads, he said.

Microsoft also has delivered a new Windows Vista Developer Center with tips on how to develop for the new user interface shell and presentation system. Vista also delivers features for finding, organizing and sharing data, including the XPS (XML Paper Specification) and an RSS subsystem.

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