Whenever the developers want to start the Windows Phone 8 Emulator, the first thing that comes to our mind is to open the windows phone project in Visual Studio 2012 and run it in the emulator and then start using it. There are times when you want to simply launch the emulator without Visual Studio.        

How do we do it?

Here's a simple trick that lets you launch the Windows Phone 8 Emulator without using Visual Studio 2012. Hyper-V can be used to do it. The Windows Phone 8 emulator is a kind of VHD and we will see how to launch Windows Phone 8 Emulator without using Visual Studio 2012.

Follow the below steps

  1. Verify that you have installed the Windows Phone 8 SDK and also the prerequisites like Hyper-V on your Windows 8 PC.
  2. Open "Command Prompt" in "Administrator" mode and then set the current directory to "C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft XDE\8.0”. This is the path if you have installed Windows Phone 8 SDK on C: drive. 
  3. If the Windows Phone emulator is launched for the first time, you might need to prove the path to the Windows Phone 8 emulators installed by the Windows Phone 8 SDK. Launch the Flash.vhd file with the below sample command.
              xde -vhd "C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SDKs\Windows Phone\v8.0\Emulation\Images\Flash.vhd"

  4. This will launch the Windows Phone 8 emulator and the Hyper-V settings will be configured accordingly.

See Also

Another important place to find a huge amount of Windows Phone related articles is the TechNet Wiki itself. The best entry point is Windows Phone Resources on the TechNet Wiki.