Unable to activate Windows Tailored Application - with a blank standard template nothing changed RRS feed

  • Question

  • Visual Studio 11 started giving me this after I copied a project folder from my USB stick which I previosly saved when I had Windows 8 Reseted

    Full error says:

    Unable to activate Windows Tailored application


    Call was canceled by the message filter.


    ...It happens with running a blank application too nothing works...

    If I start the app from outside Visual it starts shows the splash screen and after a while it closes The Weather app is behaving the same... I think it's something wrong with Metro

    UPDATE: The only working Metro apps are IE and Control Panel... what causes "Call was canceled by the message filter." ?

    • Edited by Alecs_ander Sunday, September 18, 2011 9:38 AM Update
    • Moved by Matt SmallMicrosoft employee, Moderator Monday, September 19, 2011 8:04 PM Moving to Tools as this is a general Visual Studio question. (From:Building Metro style apps with C# or VB )
    Sunday, September 18, 2011 9:18 AM

All replies

  • That's usually a sign your machine is running with a resolution less than 1024*768, which is the minimum required to run Metro apps. The current experience in this situation isn't particularly good but will no doubt improve in later builds.

    For now just go into the display control panel and crank the resolution up to something sensible.

    Sunday, September 18, 2011 2:09 PM
  • I have 1366x768 the max available for my Laptop and it says recommended I was using this one before... it's true there were some graphic card driver updates but... I don't know what to say.. what do you think?
    Sunday, September 18, 2011 3:46 PM
  • Hi Alecs,

    Does this problem still occur even after rebooting the machine?  When do you see the "Call was canceled by the message filter." error?  Immediately after starting the app or a few seconds later?

    Can you run any metro apps inside the Visual Studio debugger?

    What kind of project do you have?

    How did you reset the Windows 8 machine?


    Monday, September 19, 2011 10:33 PM
  • @Dan: Hi, yes the problem occurs even after rebooting.

    If I'm in Visual Studio the splash screen is displayed for a few seconds then it fades to green when I ALT+TAB back to Visual I see that error.

    If I try to open apps from the Developer Preview like News, Weather, Stocks directly from Windows it's the same the splash screen is displayed for a few seconds then it fades to green (meaning the app gets shut down leaving me with a blank screen) I don't get the error in these cases, but that's just because I'm not using Visual to open those apps, IDK what happened it's not my coding that's for sure it affects all Metro apps besides Control Panel and IE10.

    I reset the Windows 8 machine by using the button in Control Panel and inserting my USB drive which contained the installation kit, Windows 8 did the rest.

    I suppose a clean install of Windows solves this but... what's the point if I don't know what caused it in the first place... that's why I'm asking you guys.


    Tuesday, September 20, 2011 10:39 AM
  • Hi Alecs,

    Sorry about the delay.  Thanks for the additional info that the error message is occurring inside Visual Studio.  I checked into this error and it seems like it's a fairly generic error for the developer preview--which means it can be caused by different things.  The GUID is the app GUID listed in your project.  If the problem still occurs, let's go through a few of them:

    Your Project

    If the only app that wasn't running was the project you copied from the USB stick, then we could say it's a problem with the project.  There are a couple things I have heard cause this:  not having all of the resources like .PNG files that your project needs, and having properties inside styles because the properties don't get code generated (a known bug).

    If the pre-installed apps aren't running, then it's likely not related to the project file that you copied over from the USB stick.

    What language is your project:  C++, C#, VB, JS?


    I know you said the display is 1366x768; but what display driver are you using?  The one for the card (NVIDIA, ATI, Intel), or the standard VGA driver?  What color depth are you running?  You can find these out by right-clicking the Windws 7 style desktop, selecting "Screen Resolution", and then clicking "Advanced settings".

    What video card are you running?


    When you first installed Windows, did this problem ever occur when you built a new project in VS Express?

    Were you ever able to run any of the sample applications?

    Have you seen this behavior on any other machines?






    Thursday, October 13, 2011 12:59 AM
  • I got this error, too.  For me, the solution was to temporarily disconnect the extended monitor from my tablet dock.



    +tom Cupertino, CA
    Sunday, October 16, 2011 9:12 PM
  • Thanks Tom!

    Wednesday, October 26, 2011 10:14 PM
  • I received this error when copying in from a Silverlight project. Resource Dictionary resources were missing.

    I also duplicated the problem by adding Generic.xaml manually to the Resource Dictionary rather than by copying Generic.Xaml into my project. This automatically sets up the hooks.


    Greg Farquhar

    Tuesday, November 29, 2011 11:51 PM