Microsoft yesterday announced the final release of its Platform Update for Windows Vista, which provides access to several key Windows 7 technologies on the previous Windows version. The Platform Update consists of runtime libraries, installed via Windows Update, that provide a common platforYesterday, Microsoft announced the final release of its Platform Update for Windows Vista, which provides access to several key Windows 7 technologies on the previous Windows version. The Platform Update consists of runtime libraries—installed via Windows Update—that provide a common platform for developers. It's also being made available for Windows Server 2008.

Microsoft often makes new technologies available for previous versions of Windows to facilitate quicker developer adoption. With Vista three years ago, the company perhaps went a bit too far in back-porting technologies that were originally viewed as key to the then-new OS's success. With the possible exception of the Windows Ribbon API, however, the components in the Platform Update technologies are largely low-level, plumbing-type technologies.

On both Vista and Server 2008, the Platform Update consists of the following:

  • The Windows Graphics, Imaging, and XPS Library, for gaming, multimedia, imaging, and printing applications. This includes updates to the DirectX multimedia platform as well as the XPS document and printing subsystem.
  • The Windows Automation API, which provides accessibility tools and test automations. (This will also be provided to Windows XP users.)
  • The Windows Ribbon and Animation Manager Library, which includes access to the Windows Ribbon API, for creating rich ribbon-based applications, and the Windows Animation Manager API, a UI animation framework.
And the Windows Vista version of the Platform Update also includes the Windows Portable Devices Platform, which provides for standardized data transfers between an application and a portable device, such as a smart phone, camera, or MP3 player.

You can find out more at the Microsoft website. m for developers. It's also being made available for Windows Server 2008.

Microsoft often makes new technologies available for previous versions of Windows in order to facilitate quicker developer adoption. With Windows Vista three years ago, the company perhaps went a bit too far in backporting technologies that were originally viewed as key to the then-new OS's success. With the possible exception of the Windows Ribbon API, however, the components in the Platform Update technologies are largely low-level, plumbing-type technologies.

On both Windows Vista and Server 2008, the Platform Update consists of the following:

- The Windows Graphics, Imaging, and XPS Library, for gaming, multimedia, imaging, and printing applications. This includes updates to the DirectX multimedia platform as well as the XPS document and printing subsystem.

- The Windows Automation API, which provides accessibility tools and test automations. (This will also be provided to Windows XP users.)

- The Windows Ribbon and Animation Manager Library, which includes access to the Windows Ribbon API, for creating rich ribbon-based applications, and the Windows Animation Manager API, a UI animation framework.

And the Windows Vista version of the Platform Update also includes the Windows Portable Devices Platform, which provides for standardized data transfers between an application and a portable device, such as a smart phone, camera, or MP3 player.

You can find out more on the Microsoft web site.