March 3, 2021
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Visual C++ Smart Device Primer

  • By Nick Wienholt
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With desktop development, pressing the F5 key launches the application and attaches the debugger, but for smart device applications, they need to be run in an environment that simulates the real-world device that they will run on. The Windows Mobile SDKs ship with a number of emulators that correspond to a variety of device form factors that exist, and these can be selected from a drop-down on the Visual Studio Devices toolbar, as shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2: Device Emulators Available with Windows Mobile 6

When F5 is pressed inside Visual Studio for a Smart Device project, the nominated emulator will launch, Visual Studio will deploy the application to the device, and it will be launched with the debugger attached. Figure 3 shows a 'Hello World' MFC application running on the Windows Mobile 6 Classic Emulator.

Figure 3: MFC Hello World on Windows Mobile 6 Classic Emulator


Hopefully, this article has lifted some of the mystery surrounding mobile-device development. Once the confusing array of terminologies has been peeled back, mobile development is not as complex as it initially appears, and Visual Studio offers tremendous support for development and debugging of mobile applications. With the basics out of the way, you'll dig deeper into the various subtleties of MFC, ATL, and Win32 Mobile Development in the next article.

About the Author

Nick Wienholt is a Windows and .NET consultant based in Sydney, Australia. He has worked on a variety of IT projects over the last decade and continues to stay involved in the developer community. Nick is the co-founder and president of the Sydney Deep .NET User group, writes technical articles for Pinnacle Publishing and the Microsoft Developer Network, and is a participant in many .NET-related newsgroups. Nick's most recent book is Maximizing .NET Performance.

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This article was originally published on November 7, 2007

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