Use the MSIX SDK to distribute an MSIX package on non-Windows 10 platforms

The MSIX SDK offers developers a universal way to distribute package contents to client devices regardless of the OS platform on the client device. This enables developers to package their app content once instead of having to package for each platform.

To take advantage of the MSIX SDK and the ability to distribute your package contents to multiple platforms, we provide a way to specify the target platforms where you want your packages to extract to. This means you can ensure that the package contents are being extracted from the package only as you desire.

The following table shows the target device families to declare in the manifest.

Platform Family Target Device Family Notes
Windows 10 Phone


Windows.Universal Windows.Mobile Mobile devices
Desktop Windows.Desktop PC
Xbox Windows.Xbox Xbox console
Surface Hub Windows.Team Large screen Win 10 devices
HoloLens Windows.Holographic VR/AR headset
IoT Windows.IoT IoT devices
iOS Phone Apple.Ios.All Apple.Ios.Phone iPhone, Touch
Tablet Apple.Ios.Tablet iPad mini, iPad, iPad Pro
TV Apple.Ios.TV Apple TV
Watch Apple.Ios.Watch iWatch
MacOS Desktop Apple.MacOS.All MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, Mac Mini, iMac
Android Phone Google.Android.All Google.Android.Phone Mobile devices that target any flavor of Android
Tablet Google.Android.Tablet Android tablets
Desktop Google.Android.Desktop Chromebooks
TV Google.Android.TV Android large screen devices
Watch Google.Android.Watch Google gear devices
Windows 7 Windows7.Desktop Windows 7 devices
8 Windows8.Desktop Windows 8/8.1 devices
Web Microsoft Web.All Web.Edge.All Edge web engine apps
Android Web.Blink.All Blink web engine apps
Chrome Web.Chromium.All Chrome web engine apps
iOS Web.Webkit.All Webkit web engine apps
MacOS Web.Safari.All Safari web engine apps
Linux Any/All Linux.All All Linux distributions

In the app package manifest file, you will need to include the appropriate target device family if you like the package contents to be only extracted on specific platforms and devices. If you like the bulid the package in such a way that it is supported on all platform and device types, choose Platform.All as the target device family. Similarly, if you like the package to be only supported in web apps, choose Web.All.

Sample manifest file (AppxManifest.xml)

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<Package xmlns=""
         IgnorableNamespaces="mp uap uap3">

  <Identity Name="BestAppExtension"
            Version="" />

  <mp:PhoneIdentity PhoneProductId="56a6ecda-c215-4864-b097-447edd1f49fe" PhonePublisherId="00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000"/>

    <DisplayName>Best App Extension</DisplayName>
    <PublisherDisplayName>Awesome Publisher</PublisherDisplayName>
    <Description>This is an extension package to my app</Description>

    <Resource Language="x-generate"/>

    <TargetDeviceFamily Name="Platform.All" MinVersion="" MaxVersionTested=""/>

    <Application Id="App">
          DisplayName="Best App Extension"
          Description="This is the best app extension"

        <uap3:Extension Category="Windows.appExtension">
          <uap3:AppExtension Name="add-in-contract" Id="add-in" PublicFolder="Public" DisplayName="Sample Add-in" Description="This is a sample add-in">
               <!--Free form space-->


Platform version

In the above sample manifest file, along with the platform name, there are also parameters to specify the MinVersion and MaxVersionTested These parameters are used on Windows 10 platforms. On Windows 10, the package will only be deployed on Windows 10 OS versions greater than the MinVersion. On other non-Windows 10 platforms, the MinVersion and MaxVersionTested parameters aren't used to make the declaration of whether to extract the package contents.

If you would like to use the package for all platforms (Windows 10 and non-Windows 10), we recommend that you use the MinVersion and MaxVersionTested parameters to specify the Windows 10 OS Versions where you would like your app to work. So your manifest's Dependencies section would look like this:

    <TargetDeviceFamily Name="Platform.All" MinVersion="" MaxVersionTested=""/>
    <TargetDeviceFamily Name="Windows.Universal" MinVersion="10.0.14393.0" MaxVersionTested="10.0.16294.0"/>

MinVersion and MaxVersionTested are required fields in the manifest and they need to conform the quad notation(#.#.#.#). If you are only using the MSIX packaging SDK for only non-Windows 10 platforms, you can simply use '' as the MinVersion and MaxVersionTested as the versions.

How to effectively use the same package on all platforms (Windows 10 and non-Windows 10)

To make the most of the MSIX Packaging SDK, you will need to build the package in a way that will be deployed like an app package on Windows 10 and at the same time supported on other platforms. On Windows 10, you can build the package as an App Extension. For more information about App Extensions and how they can help make your app extensible, see the Introduction to App Extensions blog post.

In the manifest file example shown earlier in this article, you will notice a Properties element within the AppExtension element. There is no validation performed in this section of the manifest file. This allows developers to specify the required metadata between extension and host/client app.