• WinRT GridView with inline group headers and semantic zoom

    My Windows 8 app had a GridView with grouped content and also made nice use of semantic zoom to make navigating between those groups easy. All I wanted to do was to make the headers appear in the content like the People App. I thought this would be a simple case of finding the right container template to use, but after reading this post by Mike Taulty it turns out that using the group style built into GridView can't do this. His post goes into a lot of detail about how to figure out your XAML and shows a GridView with inline group headers. I've taken his method and extended it to include …

  • XAML Spy is Firebug for XAML

    I have a love hate relationship with XAML. XAML gives you a lot of control over layout, but it's often hard to tell what's going on. When your layouts rely on data I found the design tools in Visual Studio lacking. I got into a very time consuming workflow of: build app and review interface, tweak XAML, rebuild app and review interface again.

    XAML Spy is a tool that has helped me a lot in the same way that Firebug changed the way I developed HTML, XAML Spy has made my XAML development workflow a lot smoother.

    XAML Spy works with WPF, Silverlight and WinRT, but I've only used while developing …

  • Where are my application files in Windows 8

    If you install a Windows 8 store app the files don't get put exactly where you expect them to be.

    App files

    \Program files\WindowsApps\[company].[application name]_[version]_[random letters]

    App storage

    [User directory]\AppData\Local\Packages\[company].[application name]_[random letters]

    App manifest

    \ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\AppRepository\[company].[application name]_[version]_[random letters].xml

  • Creating a snap view with XAML in Windows 8 (WinRT)

    If you create a new WinRT solution using the Grid or Split Application Template you'll get all the code you need to create a layout aware page that shows a different view when in snap view. If you start of your project using the blank project template, you need to do a little bit more work to get it working.

    First you need to change the page to be a layout aware page. LayoutAwarePage is a class provided by the template and is in the Common folder. (Update: In Visual Studio 2012 RC LayoutAwarePage is no longer in the common folder for a blank page project. You need to copy the file from the …

  • Creating app bar buttons in WinRT

    If you start a new blank Windows 8 App in Visual Studio you get loads of app bar button styles to choose from in StandardStyles.xaml including:

    SkipBackAppBarButtonStyle, SkipAheadAppBarButtonStyle, PlayAppBarButtonStyle, PauseAppBarButtonStyle, EditAppBarButtonStyle, SaveAppBarButtonStyle, DeleteAppBarButtonStyle, DiscardAppBarButtonStyle, RemoveAppBarButtonStyle, AddAppBarButtonStyle, NoAppBarButtonStyle, YesAppBarButtonStyle, MoreAppBarButtonStyle, RedoAppBarButtonStyle, UndoAppBarButtonStyle, HomeAppBarButtonStyle, OutAppBarButtonStyle, NextAppBarButtonStyle, PreviousAppBarButtonStyle, …