Keeping Windows Tablets in Sync with SQL Server

| March 19, 2013 | 11 Comments

So you need to build a mobile enterprise app that runs on Windows tablets…


Your app must retrieve data from SQL Server and take it offline.  It must allow the mobile user to view, manipulate, capture new information, and then send it back to the data center.  There’s lots of data involved, so you require a mobile database with easy-to-use SQL rather than writing your own file I/O code.  While you could create dozens of web services, hundreds of web methods, plus associated data sync logic, you’d prefer to have that plumbing handled for you.  Since you can’t count on ubiquitous networking, the app must work well in an occasionally-connected environment.  Data transmissions must thrive in the slowest GPRS speeds and network dropouts must be handled smoothly via intelligent resume.  While you’re super-excited about the new programming model in Windows 8, you need this app to work on your company’s Windows 7 tablets and laptops as well.  Oh, and it has to work on those 32-bit, Intel® System on Chip (SoC) Windows tablets with long battery life.  The app must have a touch-first UX that works with fingers on tablets while supporting a mouse on laptops.  The sync technology must authenticate with your company’s Active Directory and both data-at-rest plus data-in-transit is encrypted.  While the initial app deployment only runs in the thousands, the system architecture must scale out to support tens or even hundreds of thousands of tablets.  Most of all, you’re looking for a simple solution that gets your app to market faster at a lower cost by avoiding developing everything from scratch.

If this sounds like your scenario, I’m writing your next book.


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Category: Tablet

About the Author ()

A mobile strategist and cloud architect at Microsoft, Rob has spent his career as an entrepreneur, advisor, teacher, developer, speaker, and author of bestselling books on mobile and wireless technologies. A pioneer of the smartphone revolution, he drove the development of the mobile app ecosystem from its earliest days and co-founded the world’s first cloud-based mobile device management company.

Comments (11)

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  1. Rob, it would be good if you also included a scenario that considered other device operating systems. The reality is that enterprise companies have a mix bag of devices used by employees.

  2. Bazzer says:

    Hi Rob,
    How far away is the book from publication; this is just what I need.

  3. Paul says:

    Hi Rob, Will you address modern UI / application store apps ?

  4. Wayne Looker says:

    Any update on the book launch?

  5. Bazzer says:

    on page 139 of your book you show the home screen with a sync button, I have read through several times and can’t see the code for the button. Am I missing something?

    • Rob Tiffany says:

      Hi Barry. I apologize for the confusion. In the click event of the Sync button, call the Upload() method and then the Download() method. Best of luck to you with your project.

      - Rob

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