Intel SBA Integration Guide [98 KB]
Intel® Small Business Advantage (Intel® SBA) provides an out-of-the-box, hardware-based security and productivity suite designed for small business users. Intel SBA includes a customizable user interface and several bundled Intel applications. Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and resellers can customize Intel SBA after installation (using a customization wizard).
For developers, Intel SBA will allow easy integration of an application into the carousel utilizing the Intel SBA Software Development Kit (SDK). Users will experience this app as an integrated part of their platform and developers will know that their apps will be effectively installed on their systems taking full advantage of the appropriate Intel® Business Client technologies.
This paper discusses the tips and tricks for developers using the Intel SBA SDK, troubleshooting common issues with SDK integration, and the recommended flows for adding the application to Intel SBA UI.
Intel SBA Components
Intel SBA software includes the following components:
- Application Manager – The main graphical user interface (GUI) of Intel SBA that lets users configure the settings and applications they want to use in their business.
- Service – A windows service that runs in the background and provides communication between the main GUI, the applications, and the firmware.
- Applications – Applications that provide useful features for small businesses. These include the bundled applications supplied by Intel and applications added by OEMs and resellers. This SDK can be used to add applications to the main carousel/grid and to integrate applications with bundled Intel® applications (PC Health Center and Software Monitor).
Intel SBA SDK
Intel SBA SDK contains C# sample code based on the Microsoft .NET framework environment (Version 3.5 Service Pack 1 or above). With this SDK, the application developer can do the following:
- Integrate any application into the Intel SBA software by adding an icon, application description and image, and a redirection URL. Offload routine maintenance tasks to non-business hours by adding the tasks to the PC Health Center.
- Ensure critical components are always running by registering them with the Software Monitor.
- Interact/communicate with end users by updating the application status using the alert messaging feature.
For more information on working with the Intel SBA SDK, see the following blog: Intel® Small Business Advantage – Download and try out the Intel SBA SDK.
Microsoft Visual Studio* 2010 Service Pack 1 or higher is recommended for working with Intel SBA SDK. To use the SDK in your application:
- Add a reference to the Intel.SBA.IsvSdk.Common.dll file.
- Add the Intel.SBA.IsvSdk.Common namespace to the project.
Intel SBA requires all the applications that are integrated to be signed with code-signing certificates. A signed application would have a digital signature similar to the one shown below (Figure 1). If the application is not signed, Intel® SBA responds with an “AuthenticationException” that can be caught in the ISV application to remediate the situation.
Whether or not an application is signed can be checked by right-clicking on the executable file and checking the “Digital Signatures” tab in the properties UI. The following image provides an example.
There are couple of ways to code-sign your application:
- From within Visual Studio go to this URL to learn how to Sign Application and Deployment Manifest - http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/che5h906%28v=vs.100%29.aspx
- From a command line, here is an example usage
"C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v6.0A\Bin\SignTool.exe" sign /f
"C:\Projects\Authenticode\XYZSoftware.pfx" /p "P@ssw0rd" /v /t
http://timestamp.comodoca.com/authenticode %1.exe >SignIt_Output.txt
Recommended Integration Flow
For an application to be added to Intel SBA, consent from the end user is required. If an end user denies the integration at any point, the ISV application can expect the “UserDeclinedException” and when possible, attempt the SDK integration at a later point.
ISV applications can be integrated into SBA in two ways:
- Intel SBA SDK integration support is added to the installer of the ISV application. Upon the installation of the ISV software, an application icon along with other details is added to the Intel SBA application.
- Pros: ISV application installation and SBA integration completed at one time.
- Cons: If the SBA integration is missed either due to Intel SBA software not installed or the user declined the consent, reinstallation of the ISV application is the only way to integrate the application with Intel SBA.
- Intel SBA SDK integration is added to the ISV application. During run time or upon first launch of the ISV application, Intel SBA integration can begin.
- Pros: Intel SBA integration can be done when the ISV application runs for the first time. Also, the ISV application can check that the Intel SBA software is installed and initiate SDK integration upon a system restart or every time the ISV application is started.
- Cons: The ISV application needs to be restarted to initiate the SDK integration.
FAQs and Troubleshooting Tips
The following table summarizes some common questions and troubleshooting tips discussed above:
Intel® SBA requires user consent for applications that have been added to the carousel. This error implies that the end user denied the integration of the application.
Intel SBA requires all the applications that are integrated to be signed with code-signing certificates.http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/che5h906%28v=vs.100%29.aspx
Microsoft Windows* Visual Studio 2010 with .Net Framework 3.5 or newer
When was the Intel SBA introduced into the market?
Intel SBA was first launched in 2012 and requires 3rd generation Intel® Core™ family of processors with selected chipsets.
Can the Intel SBA application run in the Windows 8 Modern UI?
No, Intel SBA is a desktop application.
About the Author
Ajith received his MSCE from the University of New Mexico and has over 15 years of engineering experience and 13 of those years with Intel. He is currently working as an Application Engineer on the Business Client Enabling team helping ISVs adopt Intel® vPro™ technologies.
- Intel® SBA for Software Developers
- What is the big deal about the new Intel® Small Business Advantage platform?
- Comparison of Intel® SBA Platform and Intel® vPro™ Technology
- Intel® Small Business Advantage – Download and try out the Intel® SBA SDK
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