Visual Studio 2012 Update 2; Git Support; Google Sync for Windows Phone; modern.IE

Microsoft Team Foundation Visual Studio now support Git. CTP of VS2012 Update 2 now available. Windows Phone 7.8, and extended Exchange ActiveSync support rolls out. $69.99 Windows 8 Pro Upgrade. "modern.IE tools for IE, Skulls of the Shogun" released.

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Microsoft now supports hosting Git repositories, and integrated it into the "Visual Studio, Team Foundation Server, and Team Foundation Service: giving developers more choice with its version control and ALM solutions."

Additionally, the Community Technology Preview (CTP) of Visual Studio 2012 Update 2 was also made available, which facilitates connecting to Git repositories on any Git host, including TFS and other 3rd party services.

The Update 2 "a way to completion" will offer a ton of cool new capabilities, below are some significant improvement's that you'll find in this CTP grouped into 4 categories: "Agile Planning; Quality Enablement; Line of Business Development; and Developer Experience."

This CTP is NOT a "go-live" CTP and is intended for evaluation only.

In other news, Google Sync service used to connect devices to Google services (Google Sync utilizes the Exchange ActiveSync, or EAS, protocol from Microsoft to synchronize email, contacts, and calendar) will now available for new Windows Phone connections via Google Sync until July 31, 2013.

"If you've already connected your Google account to your PC running Windows 8 and Windows RT using the Mail, People or Calendar apps, you don't have to do anything. Existing EAS connections to Google accounts will continue to function," Microsoft said.

"If you are trying to connect a Google account after January 30th, 2013 to your PC running Windows 8 and Windows RT using the Mail, People or Calendar apps - you can visit this support article on Windows.com."

Microsoft further notes that the Windows Phone team is building support for the new sync protocols Google is using for calendar and contacts--CalDAV and CardDAV. "These new protocols, combined with our existing support for the IMAP protocol for email, will enable Windows Phone users to continue to connect to Google services after July 31, 2013," the company wrote.

Also, with the Windows 8 Upgrade offer ends today, Microsoft is offering students a "special deal on the upgrade for $69.99 which ends March 19th."

"Today I'd like to share the pricing details for the Windows 8 student offer which will begin here in the U.S. on February 1st and in 49 additional countries by March 19th. The Windows 8 Pro upgrade edition will be available for students online via the Microsoft Store for $69.99 (ERP)," Microsoft stated.

To be eligible "Students must have a valid email address from a qualifying educational institution in order to snag this discounted deal. Students will also need to be running a PC with either Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7," Micorsoft added.

Microsoft has also aired a new Windows 8 television commercial showcasing how it is "all kinds of fun."

And, modern.IE, released today is a set of free tools and resources designed to make it easier for developers to ensure their sites work beautifully across Internet Explorer as well as other modern browsers.

As part of the modern.IE release, "we're excited to announce a special partnership with BrowserStack, a leading browser testing service that lets developers test their site on any browser on any Windows OS. For any web developer that visits BrowserStack via modern.IE, we're offering three months of this service for free over the next year," Microsoft's IE team stated.

"We recognize that customers on older versions of IE continue to be a real challenge for developers testing their sites, particularly for those developers on non-Windows devices. We want to help. We want the web to move forward. And we genuinely want web developers to spend more time innovating and less time testing. That is where modern.IE comes in," the team wrote.

windows phone 7.8 arrives

Microsoft's official page offering all the required information and features about Windows Phone 7.8 update that's rolling today.

The update will be pushed out to all devices over the coming weeks, and today Nokia Lumia and some of Samsung and HTC devices have received the update.

The page shows the actual build as 7.10.8858.136, that include following features:

  • "Start. Provides resizable small, medium, and large Live Tiles so you can customize your Start experience in new ways.
  • Accent colors. Expands the number of available accent colors to 20.
  • Lock screen. Improves the lock screen experience with accidental wipe protection features and the Bing image of the day wallpaper.
  • Marketplace and Xbox. Expands Windows Phone Marketplace and Xbox support to new countries and regions.
  • Fonts. Enhances the Chinese font and improves the appearance of Arabic and other languages."

Check the official Windows Phone 7.8 page here.

skulls of the shogun for xbox 360, windows phone 8, and windows 8

Microsoft also released today classic arcade-inspired samurai game Skulls of the Shogun on Xbox 360, Windows Phone and Windows 8.

""Skulls of the Shogun" is a multiplayer mash up combining arcade-style fighting with turn-based strategy--plus visuals inspired by 1960s-era Japanese anime thrown in for good measure."

To see it in action, check the video below:

The Windows 8 version costs $9.99 (normally $14.99), while the Windows Phone version is $4.99 (normally $6.99). The Xbox LIVE edition is available for 1200 Microsoft Points.

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