Windows Software Development Kit: Everything You Need to Know

Not a developer? You probably don't need it

by Kazim Ali Alvi
Kazim Ali Alvi
Kazim Ali Alvi
Kazim has always been fond of technology, be it scrolling through the settings on his iPhone, Android device, or Windows. And at times, unscrewing the device to take... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Windows Server & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • Windows SDK is a collection of tools primarily used by developers.
  • Users often find several versions of Windows SDK installed, consuming significant disk space.
  • Keep reading to learn about Windows Software Development Kit and if you can uninstall it.
all about windows software development kit

Developing apps is often seen as an intricate task. And in the absence of the right tools, things are all the more complex. That’s where the Windows Software Development kit comes into the picture!

It is the preferred option for designing software solutions for the OS. Though regular Windows users don’t need the SDK, it’s recommended to identify the purpose before you take any steps. The SDK does offer a wide array of advantages and is closely linked to Visual Studio.

Benefits of using Windows SDK:

  • Makes complex tasks simpler to perform
  • Reduces the app development time
  • Provides an optimal support environment for development
  • Helps eliminate errors that would arise when the app is released

What is the Windows Software Development Kit (SDK)?

Windows SDK or Software Development Kit is a wide set of tools that help create applications for the Windows operating system. 

The software development tools are available for free and can be downloaded from the official website. Besides, to further simplify and streamline things, Microsoft has released sample codes for Windows apps on GitHub

Sample codes on GitHub

But each SDK version can take up a few GBs of space. When running low on disk space, the SDK will be the first thing a regular user would uninstall. So, do you need the Windows Software Development Kit?

Unless you are a developer or run apps that depend on the SDK for core functioning, it’s not a critical requirement. And if you don’t remember manually installing the Windows suite of software development, it was most likely downloaded by Visual Studio.

How do I install Window SDK?

  1. Go to Microsoft’s official website and download the installer or the ISO file for Windows 11 SDK. We chose the windows software development kit
  2. Head to the folder where the setup is saved and run it.
  3. Select whether you want to install it on the current PC or get the relevant SDK files for another device, and click Next. We chose the former. install location
  4. Read the privacy policy, configure whether Micorosft should collect insights, and click Next to proceed.privacy 
  5. Click Accept to agree to the license terms.
  6. Tick the checkboxes for the features you want, and click Install. The setup will, by default, download all the components.install windows software development kit
  7. Click Yes in the UAC prompt to confirm.
  8. Wait for the installation to complete. It shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. 

You can download the Windows Software Development Kit from Microsoft’s website. And while both the dedicated installer and ISO are available, the former makes more sense due to the simpler installation.

And after downloading the SDK, you are just a few steps away from creating a Microsoft Store app. Why not give it a try?

How do I remove Window SDK?

  1. Press Windows + R to open Run, type appwiz.cpl in the text field, and hit Enter.appwiz.cpl
  2. Select Windows Software Development Kit from the list of programs, and click Uninstall.uninstall windows software development kit
  3. Click Yes in the UAC prompt and then the confirmation box.
  4. Wait for the process to complete.

You can uninstall Windows Software Development Kit from the Programs and Features utility or from Settings like you uninstall any app. Besides, many prefer a reliable third-party uninstall tool, given its ability to clear leftover files.

Development tools included in the Windows SDK

  • Redistributable components
  • Database table editor
  • Database schema
  • Development tools
  • Installer database validation tool
  • A sample product and code samples to get a better idea of things
  • VBScript tools

Also, during the installation, you can get the latest version of the .NET Framework Software Development Kit.

Windows Software Development Kit is a great collection of tools and finds an extensive implementation in programming activities. And if you are a seasoned developer, learn how to set up a Dev Drive and get better performance and security!

Also, to get ready-to-code developer workstations, you can always use Microsoft Dev Box

For any queries or to share what prompted you to download the Windows SDK, drop a comment below.

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