Microsoft's Live-branded online services don't end at the Web browser. They extend deep into Windows. The company last week quietly showed off software for embedding its Web-based Windows Live ID authentication services within Windows applications. Windows Live ID is the successor to Microsoft Passport, a hosted service for verifying a person's name and password for logging onto Web servers.
Later this year, Microsoft will release a beta version of a software developer's kit (SDK) for making the Windows Live ID service function within a Windows application, said Lynn Ayres, program manager on the Windows Live ID team. Right now, Windows Live ID authentication services are designed to work with Microsoft's Web-based applications such as Windows Live Mail and Windows Live Messenger. With the developer's kit, called Windows Live ID Client SDK, Microsoft is seeking to create closer integration between its Web-based hosted services and "rich client" Windows applications, Ayres said.