Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

If someone writes an ARM compiler, can desktop apps be compiled for Windows RT?

Or only apps digitally signed by Microsoft will run in desktop mode on Windows RT?

share|improve this question

closed as off topic by Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007, ChrisF, HackToHell, Synetech, Indrek Nov 1 '12 at 14:11

Questions on Super User are expected to relate to computer software or computer hardware within the scope defined by the community. Consider editing the question or leaving comments for improvement if you believe the question can be reworded to fit within the scope. Read more about reopening questions here.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

in my opinion is not off topic – Magnetic_dud Nov 1 '12 at 16:34
up vote 4 down vote accepted

No. Only Metro/Modern/Microsoft-style UI apps can be run in Windows RT.

But, some desktop apps which are compiled and digitally-signed by Microsoft can be run in Windows RT like Office 2013 and some developer apps:

share|improve this answer
Yeah, I know, but you can find compilers for the most exotic cpu/os combos, so I guess shortly they will be made available also for ARM/RT – Magnetic_dud Nov 1 '12 at 11:53
They need to be digitally signed by Microsoft. – Elmo Nov 1 '12 at 11:56
@Magnetic_dud - Even if you had a compiler, the application wouldn't run, since it must be signed by Microsoft. They did this for security reasons, it is well known, most exploits on a Windows machine is because of third-party applications. By starting fresh they can eliminate most if not all of the existing problems, and address on problems they can actually solve now and in the future. – Ramhound Nov 1 '12 at 12:00
Perfect, it's perfect for my mom! - The hidden question was "can winrt be infected easily hence need an av?" – Magnetic_dud Nov 1 '12 at 12:04
I wonder if Windows Defender is installed or not – Magnetic_dud Nov 1 '12 at 12:04

Even without the Microsoft Store restrictions, the WinRT framework stack is just a subset of the full .NET Framework. So even if you managed to install something it likely wouldn't run.

Here are some of the big differences as pointed out by Krzysztof Cwalina in his 2011 BUILD talk, A .NET Developer's View of Windows 8 App Development.

Metro Profile Design requirements Compatibility requirements surface area removed removed 2

share|improve this answer
Oh, that's why .net desktop apps won't run either – Magnetic_dud Nov 1 '12 at 12:01

At the moment no. Windows RT can run only run apps downloaded from Windows Store.

According to this link

Perhaps the biggest change is that Windows RT will only run applications that have been included in Microsoft's App store.

My gut feeling is that this restriction is Artificial. Microsoft wants a share of every software that developers develop for their OS.

share|improve this answer
Care to explain the downvote please. – Imran Nov 1 '12 at 11:54
Point taken...I have removed the comment. – Ramhound Nov 1 '12 at 12:01
@Ramhound You really should always explain downvotes in a constructive manner. You don't have to explicitly mention that you downvoted, but if your own posts are downvoted as a revenge in a serial manner, the system will reverse those automatically. – slhck Nov 2 '12 at 13:18

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .