Themes for WPF applications

26 August 2009

I really really don't know how this one fell through the "sneak peek" cracks for DXperience v2009.2. We weren't actively trying to hide it, but possibly it's because we were waiting for our graphics artist Mike to complete the design work when suddenly the release was upon us and we all had collective amnesia.

The news is in two parts. First the good news, and then, in a break with tradition, the even better news.

The Good News

DXperience WPF ships with three new visual themes: Office 2007 Blue, Office 2007 Black, and Office 2007 Silver. Here's the blue theme in action in a demo:

Office 2007 Blue theme for WPF

The theme is applied to all of DevExpress' WPF controls.

The Even Better News

Ready? The new themes work on standard WPF controls as well.

Please, go back and reread that sentence again until it's sunk in. I'll wait.

Let's be more specific: With v2009 vol 2, any DevExpress visual theme for WPF can be applied to the standard WPF controls by simply specifying the theme name for a control or for its parent element.

No longer do you have to apply custom templates to the standard WPF controls (and fiddle around with them) to get the visual consistency you need across the whole application you built with our controls. We did it for you. We support the standard GroupBox, ScrollViewer, Scroll, RadioButton, Button, ListBox, Slider, TabControl, Separator, ToggleButton, RepeatButton, Label, ListBoxItem, TabItem, and ToolTip controls with this theme engine.

As a brief example, here's the Customization Window for a toolbar shown with a couple of different themes. The controls in this window are standard WPF controls.

First, in Office 2007 Black:

Black Customization Window

And then in Office 2007 Blue:

Blue Customization Window

Notice in particular the differences in the form, the tabbed items, and the button.

So, next time you need visual consistency and support for different themes in your WPF application, it's a one-stop shop: DevExpress and DXperience WPF.

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The following free DevExpress product offers remain available. Should you have any questions about the free offers below, please submit a ticket via the DevExpress Support Center at your convenience. We'll be happy to follow-up.
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