WPF and WinForms Controls Maintenance Releases

by Avatar Bill Henning (Actipro) - 1 comment
Tuesday, December 5, 2023 at 8:56pm

Avalonia UI Controls v23.1.2 Maintenance Release

by Avatar Bill Henning (Actipro)
Monday, December 4, 2023 at 7:10pm

A new Avalonia UI Controls release is now available the adds an exciting new feature named user interface density.  Best of all, this feature is part of Actipro Themes and completely free to use!

See the related announcement post for the detailed list of enhancements and updates.


Spinner Horizontal Buttons

A new theme definition option has been added to support arranging the ButtonSpinner and NumericUpDown buttons horizontally instead of vertically.  A horizontal arrangement uses more space but is more touch-friendly.  Our sample project also shows how this option can be updated for certain user interface densities only, such as Spacious.

User Interface Density Updates

Our previous v23.1.1 release added a new user interface density feature that allowed controls and views to dynamically adjust spacing based on a density setting.  This feature was a real gamechanger and works very well, however it was discovered that the parsing of numeric values in our new XAML markup extensions wasn't always utilizing invariant culture.  Therefore, on some systems with non-English cultures, numbers were parsed incorrectly and spacing was far too large.  This issue has been corrected in this maintenance release.

Trimming and Native AOT (Ahead-of-Time)

Avalonia support native ahead-of-time compilation, which means an app is compiled to native code.  Native AOT apps have faster startup time and smaller memory footprints.  They also attempt to "trim" unused APIs to minimize the app's codebase.

For this maintenance release, we made a number of updates that help support trimming and native AOT.

Avalonia UI Controls v23.1.1 Maintenance Release

by Avatar Bill Henning (Actipro)
Wednesday, November 15, 2023 at 5:38pm

A new Avalonia UI Controls release is now available that adds an exciting new feature named user interface density.  Best of all, this feature is part of Actipro Themes and completely free to use!

See the related announcement post for the detailed list of enhancements and updates.

What is User Interface Density?

User interface density describes how tightly controls are packed together.  A simple setting on an Actipro theme definition sets the application-wide user interface density, which can adjust appearance features such as:

  • Margin
  • Padding
  • Corner radius
  • Width, height, and related minimum and maximums
  • Panel spacing
  • Grid length
  • Other various scalar values

These appearance features can be controlled anywhere in XAML via the use of theme resources and special XAML markup extensions.

UI Density Options

User interface density is a theme definition setting you can set at app startup and even change dynamically at run-time. 

Spacious (left), Normal (center), and Compact (right) UI density options for the same XAML

There are three UI density options:

  • Spacious - Most touch-friendly, and what our first Avalonia UI Controls version used.
  • Normal - A balance between touch-friendly and fitting more controls in available space.  This is the new default.
  • Compact - Intended more for desktop apps that want to maximize the number of controls fit in available space.

The screenshot above shows how the exact same XAML snippet that uses our theme resources and special XAML markup extensions can auto-adjust its appearance based on the current UI density setting.


We think that offering UI density features in a theme is extremely important, and we are excited to see how customers make use of this new capability.  These features allow you to tailor your app's view's to fit your end user's needs and can be adjusted based on the amount of data your app needs to display. 

Give it a try by downloading our samples project and when running the samples app, use the View menu to adjust the user interface density.  You'll see how the entire application adjusts its appearance.


Get Started Buy Pro Now

First Avalonia UI Controls Released

by Avatar Bill Henning (Actipro) - 1 comment
Wednesday, October 18, 2023 at 3:12pm

We are very excited today to share that we’ve officially released our first products for the Avalonia UI framework. And best of all, most of what we released is absolutely free to use!

Avalonia UI is a .NET-based framework that enables developers to create cross-platform applications. It’s very fast and uses a custom rendering engine to ensure consistent appearance and behavior across all supported platforms, including Windows, macOS, Linux, WebAssembly, Android and iOS.

We were drawn to Avalonia because its APIs are largely inspired by WPF, one of our favorite UI frameworks. It uses similar UI control designs, can define structure in XAML, has MVVM support, and makes use of many concepts WPF developers already know. Avalonia is no mere clone of WPF though. The Avalonia team has improved APIs and features over original WPF designs where it makes sense to do so, such as a powerful control theme and style design that uses CSS-like concepts.

Avalonia is taking off in popularity and we can’t wait to see where the team takes it. Now that we’ve laid a solid foundation for future Avalonia UI product growth, our plan is to expand our offerings and create additional advanced UI controls that will be part of our Pro bundle.

Actipro Avalonia UI Free Products

We are making a few of our products free for anyone to use in their Avalonia applications. These products do not require licenses to be purchased.

Actipro Themes ensures that a great consistent visual appearance is applied to all controls within your application, regardless of whether they are Actipro Avalonia UI control products or native Avalonia UI controls.

The Actipro Shared Library is a common control library referenced by all our Actipro Avalonia UI controls. It contains several very useful controls, components, value converters, and utilities that can be used in your projects.

The Actipro Core Library is a class library that is completely UI framework agnostic. It contains numerous helpful utilities and base classes that can be used in your .NET projects.

Actipro Avalonia UI Pro Products

Our Avalonia UI Pro bundle can elevate your applications with advanced controls and our full XAML source for all Actipro and native Avalonia control themes. In addition, the source code for all our Free and Pro products can optionally be purchased.

Pro initially contains our Actipro Fundamentals, which is a collection of advanced controls including beautiful user prompts (MessageBox or task dialog) and a multi-column panel.

We have plans to add many more UI controls to Pro products as we move forward. Pro customers receive free upgrades to any new products and features added to the bundle while their Pro subscription is active.

Getting Started

It’s easy to get started using our Avalonia UI controls.

The Actipro Avalonia UI Controls Sample Browser application

For control and theme samples, simply visit our GitHub repository and follow the Getting Started steps. Clone the repository to get our desktop Sample Browser solution and run it in Visual Studio or Rider.

The Avalonia UI controls have extensive product documentation available online.

Once you’re ready to start using the Avalonia UI controls in your own apps, reference our NuGet packages.

We'd love to hear your feedback about our Avalonia UI controls and which advanced controls you'd most like to see in the future.  Please comment below or write us via our support ticket system.  Happy coding!

Get Started Buy Pro Now

WPF Controls v23.1.3 Maintenance Release

by Avatar Bill Henning (Actipro)
Tuesday, September 12, 2023 at 11:53am

This version makes a number of minor updates across the WPF control product line.  A new Custom Edit Box QuickStart sample has been added that demonstrates how to build an edit box for a custom type.

See the related announcement post for the detailed list of enhancements and updates.

Download Buy Now