You can rebuild an application for a device that runs Windows Embedded Compact 7 to run on a different device without creating a new Visual Studio solution. For example, you may have designed and tested your Windows Embedded Compact application on a virtual CEPC before you obtained your intended device. After you acquire the intended device, you can rebuild your application to run on that device without creating a new Visual Studio solution.

Each Windows Embedded Compact 7 OS image (Nk.bin) is based on a particular board support package (BSP). A BSP is the software that enables the OS to run on a specific hardware platform. The BSP that the OS uses (whether you designed the OS yourself in Platform Builder or you received an SDK from an OEM) dictates the type of devices that will work with your application. Although you may need to make application design decisions to accommodate the different capabilities and memory restrictions of different devices, changing the target device of the build process itself is straight-forward.

You can use one of two methods to rebuild your existing Windows Embedded Compact application for a different device:  

  • Method 1. Use this method if your application is a subproject of an OS design in Platform Builder. 
  • Method 2. Use this method if your application is in its own Visual Studio solution that is based on a Windows Embedded Compact SDK.


Before you begin this procedure, verify that your setup meets the following prerequisites:

  • Application design: You created your application as a subproject of a Windows Embedded Compact OS design in Platform Builder, or you created your application in Visual Studio by using a Windows Embedded Compact SDK that was provided to you (for example, by an OEM that designed the OS for your device).
  • OS design: If you created your application in Platform Builder, you have multiple Windows Embedded Compact BSPs installed on your development computer.

Method 1: If your application is a subproject in Platform Builder

When your application is a subproject of a Windows Embedded Compact OS design in Platform Builder, you can change the device it will run on by choosing a different BSP for the OS design.

When you choose a different BSP, Platform Builder automatically sets the build configuration of your OS design to Debug. If you want to use a different configuration, in Platform Builder, on the Standard toolbar, in the Solutions Configurations list, switch the build configuration back by selecting the appropriate build option.

To choose a different BSP

  1. In Platform Builder, open the OS Design solution.
  2. Switch to Catalog Items View.
  3. In Catalog Items View window, expand the BSP node to display the list of installed BSPs.
  4. Select the BSP of the new device. A red X appears in the check box of this BSP because a BSP is already selected, and you can only build the OS for one BSP at a time.
  5. Clear the check box of the BSP of the device that you used in your original OS design. The red X in the check box of the BSP that you selected in step 4 turns into a green check mark.
  6. Rebuild the OS. The OS and your application (which is a subproject of the OS), can then run on your new device.
  7. Download the OS to the device. For instructions on how to download the OS to the device over Ethernet, see Downloading an OS to a Device over Ethernet.

    If you have problems attaching to the device, try exiting and restarting Visual Studio.

Method 2: If your application is based on an SDK

If you created your application in Visual Studio using a Windows Embedded Compact 7 SDK for a specific device (BSP), your application can run on a different device if you install an SDK that is designed for the new device and then add that SDK as a target build configuration.

To use an SDK for a new device

  1. In Windows Explorer, install the SDK of the new device by double-clicking the Microsoft Installer Package (MSI) file for the SDK and following the instructions.
  2. In Visual Studio, open your application’s solution.
  3. In the Solution Explorer window, right-click the solution, and then click Properties.
  4. In the left pane of the Property Pages dialog box, click Configuration Properties.
  5. At the top right of the Property Pages dialog box, click Configuration Manager
  6. In the Configuration Manager dialog box, in the Active solution platform list, click <New…>.
  7. In the New Solution Platform dialog box, in the Type or select the new platform list, select the SDK for the new BSP. In the Copy settings from list, leave the selection as the SDK for the original BSP, and do not clear the Create new project platforms check box. 
  8. Click OK and then click Close
  9. Verify that the configuration for the new BSP is selected in the Solution Platforms list on the Standard toolbar. Both SDK configurations should appear in the list. 
  10. Build the solution.
  11. Download the application to the device by using a method appropriate for the capabilities of the device. For example, if your device has a USB port, you can use a USB drive to copy the application from your development computer to the device. Alternatively, you can use ActiveSync. For instructions on how to download your application to the device by using ActiveSync, see Deploy an Application in a CAB File Using ActiveSync.