XAF: Brand New Module & Features for both Windows and the Web (Coming soon in v14.2)

XAF Team Blog
18 November 2014

End-User Report Designer for ASP.NET

With this release, the Reports V2 module supports the ASP.NET Report Designer out-of-the-box. End-users can create and modify reports directly in a browser!

Check it out! We have already incorporated this functionality in all of our demos that include reports. (e.g., in MainDemo or FeatureCenter).

Note that you do have to change your code to enable the designer in an existing XAF app. If you have an application with the Reports V2 module included, simply upgrade it to v14.2 using the Project Converter tool.

After the upgrade, you will see that the New Action is now available in the Reports View. To design an existing report created at runtime, select it and click Action_Report_ShowDesignerShow Report Designer.

The ASPxReportDesigner control is displayed in a popup by default. You can change this behavior using the ReportsAspNetModuleV2.DesignAndPreviewDisplayMode property. If you change the mode from Popup to DetailView in the Application Designer, the designer will be displayed in the main window (screenshot).

New Notifications Module for WinForms and ASP.NET

With this release, we've added a new Notifications module (CTP) allowing you to display reminders for scheduler appointments or any custom objects, e.g. tasks. The Scheduler module itself was improved to provide the corresponding UI for configuring reminders and visualizing them in the calendar. Basically, when creating a scheduler event you can create reminders like in Outlook:


and then an application will display a popup window before an event starts:

The Notifications module is a separate module which does not necessarily have to be bound to the Scheduler module: it can display notifications that come from anywhere. In the latter case your goal as a developer is to just feed the notifications service with notification items and the service will process them as required. For now, please keep in mind that this will ship as a preview. We are looking forward to your feedback so we can continue to improve the module to meet your specific requirements.

User Settings Stored in the Application Database

Starting with v14.2 all application settings and user preferences (so-called model differences) can be stored and managed directly in the application database for both WinForms and ASP.NET applications. This feature enables your customers to “roam” between machines and still have access to the appropriate settings:

Previously, these settings were stored in the file system (for WinForms) and in the browser cookies (for ASP.NET) by default. There was also a mechanism for preserving this stuff in any custom data store.

This functionality is implemented in the system module and it is activated automatically when you enable the Security System in the Solution Wizard or in code. This new settings storage is enabled by default in all newly created WinForms apps. You can enable the same in existing or Web applications by writing a few lines of code.

Bands Support in Grid List Editors for WinForms and ASP.NET

You can now enable bands in grid controls for both WinForms and ASP.NET applications:


The band layout can be configured either at runtime via the grid control interface or at design time via the Model Editor under the Views | ListView | BandsLayout node (even in the platform-agnostic module!):

While working on this feature, we have refactored our Grid List Editors (XAF wrappers around the GridControl and ASPxGridView components) so that now it would be much easier for you to enable support for other view types (card view, layout view, etc.) by  inheriting from our classes.


New Ribbon Templates for WinForms

We introduced the new Ribbon templates for Main and Detail forms of a WinForms application. Now you can easily customize the placement of your UI commands via the familiar interface of the RibbonControl wizard you often see in traditional WinForms development:

These new templates are also registered for the 'Add New Item...' dialog in Visual Studio so you can add them into your project and customize according to your business needs:

The improved templates are also used in newly created XAF projects by default.

Previously, we provided a single universal version of our WinForms templates for both classic and ribbon menus. While this universality had some great advantages for us at runtime, it cause issues whenever customization was needed. Yes, it was possible to customize everything at runtime, but it was much less convenient for developers.  

So, now, say, placing any standard or custom Action command into a custom ribbon group is no longer a problem at design time. Check out this short video for more details.


As always, we welcome your comments and feedback. Let us know what you think.



This is of course not all that our team has prepared for the upcoming 14.2 release. In my next large post I will cover a bunch of enhancements to existing features & performance tuning for ASP.NET.

Free DevExpress Products - Get Your Copy Today

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.
No Comments

Please login or register to post comments.