Enable Developer Mode (Dev Mode) On The Xbox One

Discussion in 'Xbox One Guides' started by InsaneNutter, Apr 22, 2017.

  1. InsaneNutter

    InsaneNutter Resident Nutter Staff Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Yorkshire, England
    Enabling Developer Mode (Dev Mode) On the Xbox One is pretty easy to do, however unless you are a student with access to Microsoft Imagine it will cost you a little bit of money. Here in the UK the cost is around £12, i'm not sure about the cost in other regions, however it's fairly cheap and is a one off payment. So think of it as an investment to have the ability to do some cool stuff with your Xbox One.

    Why Enable Dev Mode?:

    With Dev Mode enabled you can develop your own Xbox One apps and games and test them out on real hardware, in addition you can sideload apps, games and emulators other people have coded. I think will be the appeal for a lot of people.

    Keep in mind you do not have access to the full power the Xbox One has to offer in Dev Mode, you can only develop and use Universal Windows Platform (UWP) Apps, which are allowed limited resources on the Xbox One. However the resources you have access to are enough for various emulators to work pretty well!

    Getting Started:

    Students or ex students who have access to your old academic email address should follow this part of the tutorial, everyone else should skip to the next part: Enabling Developer Mode On The Xbox One.

    If you happen to have access to Microsoft Imagine (all you need is an .ac.uk or .edu email address) then you can get a free Windows Store Developer Account without paying, this gives you access to develop on the Xbox One also.

    If you have graduated from University chances are you were able to keep your academic email address, this is how I was able to get access to Microsoft Imagine, even though I graduated a few years ago now.
    • First sign up / log in to Microsoft Imagine, you will have to confirm your signup with your academic email address
    • Click on Downloads > Software Catalog
    • Now click on Windows Store (Free developer account):

    Here you can generate a registration code which gives you free lifetime access to publish free / paid content to the Windows / Xbox Store:

    Save your code somewhere save and now continue this tutorial

    Enabling Developer Mode On The Xbox One:

    Now lets get on with the part of the tutorial you are waiting for, on your Xbox One go to the Store and search for Dev Mode Activation:


    Install then launch the Dev Mode Activation application:


    Follow the on screen prompts to setup Dev Mode on your Xbox One:


    Click Next:


    Keep a note of your code, then ignore the URL the Xbox asks you to visit and go to: https://developer.microsoft.com/xboxactivate


    Click Sign up now:


    Enter your name, address and contact details and select the personal development account. When you click next this is where you can enter the code you obtained from Microsoft Imagine if you are a student, this will get you out of paying the £12 registration fee.

    If you don't have access to Microsoft Imagine you will just have to pay the fee:

    Agree to the terms and conditions and click finish:


    Everything should be successful:


    Stay signed in and go to https://developer.microsoft.com/xboxactivate again, you now want to enter your activation code shown on the Xbox here:


    Developer mode will now be activated on your Xbox One:


    You should then see your console appear on the Microsoft Developer Website:


    The Xbox One will ask you to switch to developer mode and restart:


    Once the Xbox One restarts you will see the development dashboard, click "Settings" in the bottom right:


    Now set a username and password:


    You can now connect to your Xbox One from a web browser via the address shown on the development dashboard:


    From the web browser you can add compiled Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps and games:


    You can also configure various settings for the development side of your Xbox One:


    Please keep in mind: Anything you install in Dev Mode can't be used in retail mode, you have to enter Dev Mode to use your installed / side loaded apps. Likewise you can't use retail apps and games in Dev Mode, you have leave Dev Mode to use any purchased apps and games as normal.

    • Dev Mode = Apps, games and emulators you or someone else in the Xbox Community has developed
    • Retial Mode = Normal Xbox One usage, apps and games purchased on disc or as digital downloads

    The Xbox One will now boot to Dev Mode every time you power it on, unless you leave Dev Mode. Once you leave Dev Mode your Xbox One will load up normally as it always has.

    Leaving Developer Mode On The Xbox One:

    To leave Dev Mode, simply select "Leave Dev Mode" on the development dashboard, your Xbox One will reboot and be back to normal, showing any apps and games you would normally have installed:


    When leaving Dev Mode I would recommend unchecking "Delete side loaded apps and games" that way the next time you enter Dev Mode everything you have installed will still be there:


    To enter Dev Mode again simply load the Dev Mode Activation app from the installed apps on the Xbox One dashboard.

    I hope this helped you get Development Mode setup on your Xbox One, you can now follow my tutorial on How To Install Apps, Games and Emulators In Dev Mode on the Xbox One
    RGHdemon and gatekeeper1122 like this.
  2. AZP3001

    AZP3001 New Member

    Dec 15, 2022
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  3. InsaneNutter

    InsaneNutter Resident Nutter Staff Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Yorkshire, England
  4. RGHdemon

    RGHdemon Active Member

    Mar 6, 2019
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    Very awesome, thank you for this!

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