Portable Media

Installing User Created Apps On a Zune

image Sometime last year, Microsoft upgraded the Zune software to version 3.0.  With this came some new features including the ability to add games to your device.  Since then, this has gone no where.  Though the games are build on the XNA architecture, the same one used to allow user generated games to appear on the Xbox Live Marketplace, none have shown up for the Zune.  This is saddening and whether the reason is that MS gave up and decided people didn’t want games or they just haven’t taken the time to do another upgrade to allow them, it begs the question:  How can I add to my Zune experience.

Well, like most things, the user community has come to the rescue.  Using C# Express Edition 2008 and the XNA Game Studio software (both free) you too can add community created games and apps to your Zune.  The process has been posted by “Bolt” over on Zune Boards and while it’s quite lengthy, following the step by step guide should set you up to get the apps you want running on your device.

A short sample:

I used a lot of runtohell121’s material, I didnt want to re-write it. Some things needed to be changed to make it for 3.0.
1. Download the following 3 programs:
C# Express Edition 2008 download
XNA Game Studio 3.0
2. Install C# 2008 first
3. Now install the XNA Game Studio program.
Make sure to install 7-zip, you’ll need it later.
4. After installing it, Open up C# and try to find the monitor with the x/cross on it (shown by picture below). If you can’t find it, you can also use Start–>Programs–>Microsoft XNA Game Studio 3.0–>XNA Game Studio Device Center.


You can click here to go directly to the full guide or visit Zune Boards and make your way to the forum.  Also, you can find a list of apps that work with the latest (3.0) Zune software here.

If anyone has a chance to try this before I do, let me know how it works for you.  It’s something I’m interested in but haven’t taken time to walk through yet.  Enjoy!


About the author

Adam Thursby

Adam Thursby is the founder and creator of The Digital Media Zone.