Sideloading Windows 8 Applications

(Last updated: 12/10/2023 V1.1) Home

Original guide was made by YavBav09.

Getting a developer license (All SKUs)

This method does no longer work due to the store shutdown.

Open PowerShell. Get a Windows developer registration using this command:

pwsh Show-WindowsDeveloperLicenseRegistration

If it doesn't work the first time, try a few more times. This license has a time limit and needs to be renewed to keep using the sideloaded apps, you will need to run this command again to renew it.

If you have Windows 8.0 you need to install KB3140245 x64/x86 for TLS 1.1/1.2 support + additional fixes, then have windows at security update level 2019-12. You can find Post EOL Updates for 8.0 here.

Installing apps

Open PowerShell and use this command:

Add-AppxPackage path\name.appx/appxbundle

Making a backup of your app via WSAppBak

The app is now installed, but you may notice that if you launch it, it won't work due to a missing license. What you need to do is to go to C:\Program Files\WindowsApps. This directory is hidden by default, so you might need to type the path out or show hidden files. You won't be granted access at first, so you should change ownership of the folder to your account.

After that, find the folder where the app resides and copy it's path.
Example: C:\Program Files\WindowsApps\Microsoft.RemoteDesktop_6.2.9200.20523_neutral__8wekyb3d8bbwe

Start WSAppbak, paste the folder path into the input folder, paste a different folder path for the output folder. After it has finished, you have the newly created .appx and certificate.cer. Install the certificate to the local machine > trusted root certificates. Delete the previously installed app, after that install the newly generated appx.

Getting a developer license (Enterprise Only)

This method only works via a special product key.

Open Group policy. Go to: Administrative Templates\Windows Components\App Package Deployment

Enable the following settings:

  • Allow development of Windows Store apps without installing a developer license
  • Allow all trusted apps to install

Paths .

Pub: 19 Jul 2023 14:41 UTC
Edit: 12 Oct 2023 16:30 UTC
Views: 1608