Metro apps

Metro apps

Windows 8 Metro apps behave in a different way than normal Windows applications. Nexthink abstracts those differences in order to provide a comprehensive view of the users' activity.

Executions of metro apps

There are mainly two kind of architectures for metro apps: compiled and JavaScript. Compiled applications (written in C#, VisualBasic or C++) behave similarly to normal Windows applications and have a .exe file associated with them. JavaScript applications however are not compiled and there is no associated .exe file. Instead the default windows executable WWAHost.exe is used to host them. When analysing the task manager of Windows 8 device we can usually see several executions of WWAHost, each one corresponding to a specific metro app.

Only reporting executions of WWAHost would be confusing as Nexthink users would no longer be able to distinguish between different metro apps. Instead Nexthink Collector abstracts this information and reconstructs name and properties of the metro app being hosted by WWAHost by reporting this as a Binary. Similar techniques are used to abstract the corresponding Executables and Applications.

Executions, connections, web requests, crashes, freezes, etc. are reported as usual. This means that for instance in Nexthink it is possible to distinguish the web requests performed by the Weather app with respect to the Food & Drink app. The Description field of Metro executables is also always set to Windows 8 Metro Style App.

Metro packages

Metro apps are different from a packaging perspective as well. In fact they are not installed like traditional applications and are not visible in Windows Programs and Features. As for binaries Nexthink abstracts these differences; all metro apps are reported as a Package and the corresponding installations and uninstallations are reported as well.