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Using other assemblies in an application

From: Silverlight 5 Essential Training

Video: Using other assemblies in an application

Silverlight applications are client-side programs. In order for them to work the code must be available on the customer's computer. The mechanism for deploying code in .NET is called an Assembly, which is nothing more than a specially configured executable file. In Silverlight that will be a DLL file. This DLL file must be downloaded to the customer's computer before your application can start. Your code also uses other .NET classes. When you compile your app you take on dependencies to other .NET Assemblies, this means that these additional assemblies must also be available on the customer's computer.

Using other assemblies in an application

Silverlight applications are client-side programs. In order for them to work the code must be available on the customer's computer. The mechanism for deploying code in .NET is called an Assembly, which is nothing more than a specially configured executable file. In Silverlight that will be a DLL file. This DLL file must be downloaded to the customer's computer before your application can start. Your code also uses other .NET classes. When you compile your app you take on dependencies to other .NET Assemblies, this means that these additional assemblies must also be available on the customer's computer.

Any assembly you use must be compiled specifically for Silverlight use, none of the standard .NET libraries work with Silverlight applications. This applies to your libraries too, they must be recompiled for Silverlight use. You can use non-core and non-SDK assemblies too. You can create your own satellite assemblies, it is common for companies to create standard libraries that they use across different Silverlight projects. You can use controls written by third-party vendors like Telerik or Infragistics, plus the Silverlight team includes a number of useful assemblies.

Microsoft provides two sets of assemblies, the first set is the Core assemblies, the second is the SDK assemblies. The Core assemblies or essential libraries aren't preinstalled on the client's computer. When the user installs Silverlight the Core assemblies are copied to their machine. I've highlighted the Core assemblies on the right side of this slide. There are five of them. Your application does not need to download these files to the user's computer. The Silverlight Core libraries are intentionally kept small and lean to reduce install time. Microsoft also provides additional Silverlight assemblies called the SDK assemblies.

These are additional Silverlight-specific libraries, they are useful but not critical. They're specifically compiled to work with Silverlight but they are not automatically added to the user's computer. If you want to use something that's in the SDK assemblies you have to do some additional work. First, you must add them to your project in Visual Studio or Expression Blend by using the References dialog. Second, these files must be downloaded to the user's computer. This means that your application download is bigger because it contains the SilverLight SDK assemblies. SilverLight does cache the assemblies locally however.

So the download time is reduced on future requests. Let's see how this works. I've switched back to Visual Studio, I have loaded a solution called CoreRuntimeAndOtherAssemblies, this is a simple default Silverlight application and has the default reference list. When I compile my application all the non-core assemblies will be included in my XAP file. Let me show you what I mean. I'll compile my application, then I'll go to Solution Explorer, click the Show All Files button. I'll look in the Bin folder and the Debug folder, and what I want to do is look at the contents of this XAP file.

Remember that this is just a compressed file, so I can change the extension to ZIP. When I look inside the ZIP file, there is my Manifest file and my DLL from my application. Next, let me add a reference to another assembly; delete this file by pressing the Delete key, and I will go to my References folder and right-click on it and choose Add Reference. In the .NET tab in the Add Reference dialog are listed all of the Silverlight compatible assemblies.

I am going to try this one down here called System.Xml.Linq, click on OK. In my References folder I now see a new item, System.Xml.Linq, and when I build my application and look in the Bin folder and take a look inside my XAP file, you'll see I now have a second DLL in there. This will be downloaded to the user's computer via the XAP file.

Another way I can add a reference is to go to a designer like this MainPage.xaml file and take a control like this TabControl or the TreeView Control and drag that over and drop it on my designer surface. A couple of things happen when I do that, one it'll modify my XAML file in the bottom to include a new directive, it also adds a reference to my References folder automatically, I've added this reference here System.Windows.Controls. Another way to add a reference is to import an existing DLL.

I am going to use one of the DLLs that I used throughout this course called the Essential Library. I am going to add that by right-clicking on the References folder, choosing Add Reference and I am going to click over here on the Browse tab and I'm going to walk thru my hard drive and find a folder in my Exercises File, those are on my Desktop>Exercise Files. And folder I'm looking for is down at the bottom in this EssentialTrainingLib, let's open this one up. I will drill down into the Bin folder and the Debug folder and then I am going to choose this EssentialTrainingLib.dll file.

Okay, notice in my Reference list I now have Essential Training Library (EssentialTrainingLib) this will also be included in my XAP. The last kind of reference I can use is a Project reference. To create a project reference I'm going to add another project to my Solution, right-click the Solution, choose Add> New Project and I'm going to build a Silverlight Class Library, this means it will compile a set of classes that are available to Silverlight, they will be contained in this project called LyndaLib. Select the Silverlight 5 version.

Now to add a reference to Lynda library I go to my original project, not the LyndaLib project, go to my References folder, right-click, choose Add Reference. Then I click on the Projects tab and then choose LyndaLib. And now all these files; Essential Training Lib, LyndaLib System.Xml.Linq and the others will all be downloaded to the user's computer and made available to my application.

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This video is part of

Image for Silverlight 5 Essential Training
Silverlight 5 Essential Training

106 video lessons · 5479 viewers

Walt Ritscher
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 41s
    1. Welcome
      53s
    2. Using the exercise files
      48s
  2. 35m 0s
    1. Overview of Silverlight
      3m 29s
    2. Setting up a developer computer
      2m 46s
    3. Installing the Silverlight Toolkit
      2m 21s
    4. Exploring the toolkit samples
      2m 35s
    5. Using Visual Studio 2010 to create a Silverlight project
      5m 10s
    6. Using Expression Blend to create a Silverlight project
      3m 13s
    7. Getting to know the Visual Studio interface
      8m 15s
    8. Working in the Expression Blend interface
      7m 11s
  3. 29m 46s
    1. Understanding the Visual Studio project structure
      3m 38s
    2. Creating a Silverlight page
      3m 17s
    3. Compiling your first application
      5m 0s
    4. Using other assemblies in an application
      5m 45s
    5. Deploying a Silverlight application
      3m 43s
    6. Understanding the startup process for an application
      3m 13s
    7. Understanding how users get Silverlight on their computers
      5m 10s
  4. 16m 59s
    1. Exploring the relationship between XAML and .NET
      3m 57s
    2. Using C#
      7m 16s
    3. Exploring the code-behind file
      5m 46s
  5. 43m 22s
    1. Working with XAML elements and Property attributes
      4m 56s
    2. Investigating XAML namespaces
      7m 31s
    3. Converting XAML properties with TypeConverters
      5m 1s
    4. Working with Property elements
      4m 24s
    5. Assigning runtime data with XAML markup extensions
      4m 21s
    6. Digging into the dependency property system
      6m 12s
    7. Creating a custom dependency property
      4m 42s
    8. Understanding attached properties
      6m 15s
  6. 9m 35s
    1. Debugging your code
      5m 17s
    2. Special Silverlight debugging techniques
      4m 18s
  7. 36m 0s
    1. Understanding layout
      4m 55s
    2. Using DockPanel and WrapPanel
      4m 2s
    3. Exploring sophisticated layouts with the Grid
      6m 40s
    4. Absolute positioning with the Canvas panel
      5m 20s
    5. Scrolling content with the ScrollViewer
      3m 28s
    6. Adjusting content alignment, margins, and sizing
      5m 6s
    7. Using the TabControl
      2m 17s
    8. Manipulating elements with transforms
      4m 12s
  8. 20m 32s
    1. Painting the user interface (UI) with SolidColorBrush
      6m 7s
    2. Getting colorful with gradient brushes
      3m 15s
    3. Decorating elements with ImageBrush
      4m 56s
    4. Creating effects with VideoBrush
      6m 14s
  9. 25m 42s
    1. Understanding routed events
      3m 12s
    2. Wiring up event handlers in Silverlight
      6m 4s
    3. Understanding event bubbling
      4m 39s
    4. Exploring mouse events
      7m 43s
    5. Exploring keyboard events
      4m 4s
  10. 32m 31s
    1. Displaying text on the screen
      3m 24s
    2. Gathering text input from the user
      5m 30s
    3. Showing complex text with RichTextBox
      6m 7s
    4. Understanding text overflow and text linking
      3m 14s
    5. Searching content with the AutoComplete type-ahead control
      6m 45s
    6. Using and embedding Silverlight fonts
      7m 31s
  11. 26m 47s
    1. Understanding content controls
      5m 7s
    2. Understanding button controls
      6m 16s
    3. Using the BusyIndicator
      4m 40s
    4. Showing tooltips
      4m 34s
    5. Changing content size with ViewBox
      1m 39s
    6. Exploring more controls
      4m 31s
  12. 55m 36s
    1. Connecting elements with binding
      9m 54s
    2. Using business data in a binding
      9m 21s
    3. Listing data with ItemsControls
      6m 39s
    4. Digging into the DataGrid
      8m 28s
    5. Using the DataForm
      3m 49s
    6. Storing data on the client
      7m 10s
    7. Debugging XAML bindings
      5m 41s
    8. Charting data
      4m 34s
  13. 24m 36s
    1. Creating an Out-of-Browser (OOB) application
      6m 16s
    2. Controlling aspects of an OOB application
      2m 49s
    3. Alerting the user with notification windows
      7m 13s
    4. Hosting HTML content in Silverlight applications
      8m 18s
  14. 30m 2s
    1. Exploring Silverlight trust levels
      3m 51s
    2. Creating an elevated trust application
      5m 57s
    3. Reaping the benefits of XAP signing
      6m 5s
    4. Making cross-domain calls
      5m 1s
    5. Getting started with COM Interop using the Speech API
      4m 21s
    6. Using COM Interop to interact with Microsoft Office
      4m 47s
  15. 16m 33s
    1. Showing child windows
      3m 48s
    2. Using a child window as a dialog window
      5m 7s
    3. Creating native windows
      2m 53s
    4. Maximizing a window with full screen mode
      4m 45s
  16. 13m 20s
    1. Dynamically loading UI content with user controls
      4m 46s
    2. Using the Navigation Framework
      8m 34s
  17. 9m 28s
    1. Using resource files
      3m 53s
    2. Using images in an application
      5m 35s
  18. 16m 32s
    1. Playing audio
      4m 27s
    2. Playing sound effects
      5m 4s
    3. Viewing video content with MediaElement
      4m 58s
    4. Changing video playback speed with TrickPlay
      2m 3s
  19. 14m 40s
    1. Capturing video with a web camera
      4m 16s
    2. Working with a microphone
      3m 47s
    3. Creating print output
      6m 37s
  20. 22m 35s
    1. Understanding Silverlight animations
      4m 35s
    2. Creating animations
      7m 52s
    3. Controlling animations
      4m 18s
    4. Simulating physics with animation easings
      5m 50s
  21. 27m 47s
    1. Placing XAML resources within a FrameworkElement
      6m 47s
    2. Centralizing settings in styles
      4m 8s
    3. Creating an alternate control UI with ControlTemplates
      6m 29s
    4. Dressing up your data with DataTemplates
      4m 33s
    5. Explaining the VisualStateManager: a simple way to manage control states
      5m 50s
  22. 10m 55s
    1. Handling global errors in a Silverlight application
      5m 46s
    2. Showing an application loading screen
      5m 9s
  23. 10m 48s
    1. Integrating with XNA
      7m 40s
    2. Exploring data analysis with PivotViewer
      3m 8s
  24. 1m 6s
    1. Goodbye
      1m 6s

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