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10 Laps around Silverlight 5 (Part 7 of 10)

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Michael Crump
Michael Crump
Joined Nov 12, 2010
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0 comments   /   posted on Nov 22, 2011
This article is sponsored by Telerik RadControls for Silverlight. For similarly awesome content check out Telerik XAMLflix, your step-by-step guide to Telerik Silverlight and WPF controls. Get access to video tutorials, written tutorials, and tons of code!

To contact me directly please visit my blog at http://michaelcrump.net/ or through twitter at http://twitter.com/mbcrump.

This article is Part 7 of the series “10 Laps around Silverlight 5.” If you have missed any other section then please see the Roadmap below.

To refresh your memory on what Silverlight is:

Microsoft Silverlight is an application framework for writing Rich Internet Applications.

The run-time environment is available as a plug-in for most web browsers and works on a variety of operating systems including Windows, Mac and Linux.

To recap what we learned in the previous section:

  • We spent some time building an application that uses P/Invoke or Platform Invocation to get familiar with Elevated Trust and Out of Browser applications.  We also reviewed that P/Invoke allows managed code to call native code.
  • We then took a look at how to create a Silverlight 5 application that uses multiple windows that are separate from the main Silverlight window. We discussed how that if you close one of the newly spawned windows then it only closes that instance. 
  • We wrapped up with creating an application that uses unrestricted file access to demonstrate creating a folder and placing a file inside of it with some content.

In this article, I am going to discuss a few more operating system integration features in Silverlight 5 including: Default Filename for SaveFileDialog, 64-bit browser support and Power Awareness for Media Applications. Please review the Roadmap for the series before going any further.

The Roadmap for this Series

I’ve included the Roadmap for the series below as you may want to visit other sections as you learn Silverlight 5. I picked the following features as I thought that you may find them useful in your day-to-day work. If you want a specific topic covered then please leave it in the comments below.

1) Introduction to SL5 – This post which provides a brief history of Silverlight and relevant links.

2) Binding- Ancestor Relative Source Binding and Implicit Data Templates.

3) Graphics –XNA 3D API and Improved Graphics Stack.

4) Media - Low-Latency Sound using XNA and Remote Control and Media Command (Keys) Support.

5) Text - Text Tracking and Leading, Linked and Multi-column Text, OpenType Support, Pixel Snapped Text and TextOptions.

6) Operating System Integration - Part 1 - P/Invoke, Multiple Windows and Unrestricted File System Access in Full Trust.

7) Operating System Integration [This post] Part 2 - Default Filename for SaveFileDialog, 64-bit browser support and Power Awareness.

8) Productivity and Performance - XAML Binding Debugging, Parser Performance Improvements and Multi-core JIT for improved start-up time.

9) Controls - Double and Triple click support, PivotViewer and ComboBox Type-Ahead.

10) Other items - In-Browser HTML, PostScript and Tasks for TPL.

Default Filename for SaveFileDialog

In previous version of Silverlight, you could not specify the default filename for the SaveFileDialog message. In Silverlight 5 you can very easily.

Fire up a new Silverlight 5 project and give it any name that you want. We are going to create a simple application that contains one button and when the user clicks it the SaveFileDialog will appear with a default filename.

Switch over to the MainPage.xaml and add in the following code:

   1: <StackPanel HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Center">
   2:         <Button x:Name="btnSaveFile" Content="Save File Dialog" Click="btnSaveFile_Click"/>
   3: </StackPanel>

Let’s switch back over to the MainPage.xaml.cs and add the following code to our button event handler:

   1: private void btnSaveFile_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
   2:        {
   3:            var saveFileDialog1 = new SaveFileDialog
   4:                                      {
   5:                                          Filter = "JPeg Image|*.jpg|Bitmap Image|*.bmp|Gif Image|*.gif",
   6:                                          DefaultFileName = "YouCanNowHaveADefaultFileName.jpeg"
   7:                                      };
   8:            saveFileDialog1.ShowDialog();
   9:        }

If we run the application now, we will see the following prompt. 

(Note: You could run this application in elevated trust to remove the security warning, see this post for details)

Go ahead and select OK and you will see the following screen:

You should notice that the File name field is filled in for us with a default save as type as Jpeg. Of course, if you didn’t want the user to see the security warning then you could run this application in elevated trust as mentioned under the image.

64-bit browser support

64-bit browser support is also new to Silverlight 5. If you have installed Windows 7 x64 then you already have a 64-bit version of Internet Explorer. You can find it by going to the “search program and files” prompt and typing Internet Explorer as shown below.

If you launch Internet Explorer x64 and visit a site built with Silverlight 5 then you will see the following message:

After you click on the hyperlink then it will take you to a page that says the following:

(Please note this message will change after the final version of Silverlight 5 is released.)

Don’t worry about this prompt, just go ahead and click “Install for Windows” and you will now be able to run Silverlight 5 applications inside of a browser running in 64-bit mode. Pretty sweet stuff!

Power Awareness for Media Apps

Silverlight 5 comes with an improved power awareness feature. When you are watching a video in Silverlight 5, the screensaver will be disabled (for example, it will not kick in and distract you from your movie). It also allows the computer to sleep when the video is not playing. This is all accomplished with no additional code! You just have to be using Silverlight 5.


At this point, we have seen how you would use specify a default filename for SaveFileDialog, we looked at 64-bit browser support and power awareness for media applications. We have also discussed a few other features in Silverlight 5. In the next part of the series, I am going to take a look at a few productivity and performance features including : XAML Binding Debugging, Parser Performance Improvements and Multi-core JIT for improved start-up time.  Again, thanks for reading and please come back for the next part.

To contact me directly please visit my blog at http://michaelcrump.net/ or through twitter at http://twitter.com/mbcrump.



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