Kunal-Chowdhury.com - Microsoft Technology Blog for developers and consumers: June 2011

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 24 - Local Database Support, CRUD operation with Demo

In the last two chapters of the tutorial series, we discussed about the local database support in Windows Phone 7 (Mango). We learnt how to create a DataContext class from existing SQL CE database and also we learnt about the issues that arises once we add the class file in the project to build. We learnt the steps to resolve those issues too.


In this article, we are going to discuss about the CRUD operations that we can do using the DataContext class with a small application. We will learn how to create and delete a database, we will also learn how to insert or fetch records. After reading this tutorial you will also be able to do other operations like edit, search etc.

Download Windows Phone SDK 7.1 Beta 2 (Mango) - Web and Offline Installer

Microsoft released Windows Phone 7.1 SDK Beta 2 today, 29th June 2011. It has a no. of new features as well as some breaking changes respect to previous Beta 1 release.


In this post, find the link to download the Beta 2 SDK of Windows Phone 7.1 (Mango) which includes both the web and standalone offline installer. Also find the links towards new and breaking changes.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 23 - Local Database Support, Configuring Project

Hope you read my previous post on Windows Phone 7.1 (Mango) local database support. If you didn't read the earlier post, you need to read it before reading this one. You can find it here: "Create DataContext". That will give you the basic context about the same.


In this post (I will rather calling it as a Tip), we will configure the project by adding the generated DataContext class and in the next post, we will learn what are the various CRUD operations we can do with a sample application. That will give you complete visibility to this new feature implementation.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 22 - Local Database Support, Create DataContext

Do you know that, Windows Phone 7.1 (Mango) now supports local database? Yes, you can now use local database inside your Phone 7 device and use it to CRUD operations. You can now create a DataContext class from an existing database and use it as the entry point class to do DB operation.


In this chapter we will learn how to create a DataContext class for local SQL CE database. At the end of this tutorial our data context class will be ready for further DB operations.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 21 - Small Demo of Accelerometer Application

Last two days we learned about Accelerometer class, it's base class and the accelerometer tool that comes with the Phone emulator. Hope those posts gave you some basic idea about it.


Here in this post, we will learn the use of this feature with a small demo application. We will also learn how to use the phone to write application that depends on the gravitational force applied to the sensors. This will give you better idea to create game application that will work when the user moves his phone device.

Weekly News Digest @SilverlightZone - 19-June-2011 to 25-June-2011

Here comes the weekly news digest of Silverlight-Zone.com from 19th June 2011 to 25th June 2011. We have submitted 72 article links during the week on various topics like Silverlight, Windows Phone 7, LightSwitch, Expression Blend and even Windows 8.


During this week, top news was on Windows 8 Rumour to Windows Phone 7 future followed by several Windows Phone 7 related articles. In this post, I am going to share the top 5 posts as well as the links to daily news digest at Silverlight-Zone.com. Read to know more.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 20 - Know about the Accelerometer Tool

Yesterday, we came to know about Accelerometer of Windows Phone 7. We also learnt about the structure of the Accelerometer class and it's base class. Now, it's the time to see how to run the same inside the Phone emulator. In this post we are going to see the accelerometer tool that comes with the Phone 7 emulator.


Read more to know how to run the accelerometer tool and what customization we can do with this tool. This will be beneficial for you when we discuss more about the topic with a sample application.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 19 - What is WP7 Accelerometer?

Accelerometer defines the force applied to the Windows Phone 7 device which can be used to determine the measure of direction that has been applied by the user by moving the device. This values are represented as a 3D vector coordinates in X, Y and Z axis. Using the Accelerometer class present in the library, we can programmatically control the device's 3D acceleration.


In this article we will learn about the class that we will use to demonstrate the same feature. Read to learn more about it.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 18 - Know about various Phone Tasks

Last two days, we learnt about Alarm and Reminder class present for Windows Phone 7 application development. We came to know about the class structure and demoed the implementation with small application created in step-by-step process. We also learnt about the use of Task while discussing the same.


In this tutorial chapter we will learn more about the tasks present for Mango devices. After reading this part you will be able to understand the different tasks and their uses. Read more to learn about them with visual code snippet and huge screenshots.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 17 - How to Create a WP7 Reminder Application?

Yesterday we discussed about the Alarm class and also demonstrated the use of it using a small demo app. Today in this post we will learn about Reminder class and will see the structure of the same. We will also demonstrate the implementation with a small demo.


Like Alarm class, Reminder class is also part of the "Microsoft.Phone.Scheduler" namespace and inherits the same base class. Let's read more about it and explore each and every step to create a simple Windows Phone 7 Reminder application.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 16 - How to Create a WP7 Alarm Application?

Windows Phone 7.1 now supports scheduled tasks which runs even the application is not running. We can now schedule a task and when the bell hits, it starts executing the said task. In this chapter of the tutorial series, we will explore this using the Alarm class.


Alarm class creates an instance which runs in the background using the task agent and at the specified time, it will raise the event to execute. If your application is not running at that time too, it will execute and show the alarm screen. Read to know more about the class with a small demonstration.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 15 - Detecting Device Information

In our last chapter of Windows Phone 7 Tutorial, we learnt about detecting network information using the static class called DeviceNetworkInformation. We also demonstrated it with a small demo application.


In this new chapter of the tutorial series, we will learn how to detect the device information using the APIs present inside the SDK. We will learn how to detect whether any Keyboard has been installed with the device, whether the device is running under battery or using any external power supply. We will also learn the way to detect about the memory of the device and other device information.


Read more to know about the class and it's properties with a small demonstration of the code.

Weekly News Digest @SilverlightZone - 12-June-2011 to 18-June-2011

During the week 12th June to 18th June, we posted 63 new article links at Silverlight-Zone.com which consists of Silverlight, Windows Phone 7, LightSwitch, XAML and Blend.


In this weekly news digest, I am going to share the popular 5 posts of the week and links to all the daily digest pages. Most popular posts are on "Google Maps for WP7 using Bing Map control", "HTML5 and Silverlight5 discussion", "Tips & Tricks on Office with Mobile 7", "HTML5 based WP7 Application" and "Release date for WP7 Mango devices".


Read more to find those interesting posts of this week and the digest links in case you missed them.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 14 - Detecting Network Information of the Device

User can now detect the mobile operator and other network information's in Windows Phone 7.1 Mango devices programmatically. The new APIs to detect these information will help you to identify the mobile operator, availability of network, Wi-Fi access etc.


Let's jump into deep drive to know more about these APIs and the integration to your application using a small demo. Read to learn about it.

Windows Phone 7 Tip: Showing and Hiding onscreen keyboard in Emulator

If you are developing any Windows Phone 7 application form and using the Emulator to run the app, you may find this tip very useful. A first time user who feels very annoying to click the mouse button to enter text using the phone emulator can hide the onscreen keyboard and use the computer's keyboard after reading this tip.


Read to know more about the small tip which will make your life even easy.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 13 - What is Tombstoning?

Mobile phones have very limited resource as compared to a desktop PC and hence it is very difficult to run multiple applications simultaneously. Also, suppose if multiple resources run simultaneously, it will eat up the battery life and make your phone stop working after certain period of time.


So what to do? To overcome this situation, tombstoning comes into picture. It saves the current data and then moves the app to the background or closes the app after saving all the data. This calls as Tombstoning. In this post, we will discuss on the same.

A Solution for Binding Silverlight DataGrid Columns to 2nd Level Collection

Supreet Tare posted a thread on MSDN Forum to help him binding a 2nd Level Collection in Silverlight DataGrid control. As he didn't find any good solution there, he asked me on Twitter to give a solution to him for the same. I did a small investigation and came up with a solution for him.


In this post, I am going to describe the problem, as well as solution to this. Hope this solution will be helpful to you too and hence sharing in my blog. Read more to find out the solution.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 12 - Using Isolated Storage to Store and Retrieve Data

Last couple of days we discussed about Page State and Application State of Windows Phone 7 (Mango). We learnt various ways of saving state of the page or application. After reading those chapters, you might have question in your mind that how to save the state of the application before closing the application and once you comeback again, you should get them back.


If you are familiar in Silverlight, you should have answer to this. Yes, we can use Isolated Storage to save the state of the app and read values whenever require in future.


In this tutorial, we will discuss about this with a simple demo code. If you are new to Isolated Storage, you will be able to learn how to use it directly in Windows Phone. Read to know more.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 11 - Application State Management

On last Saturday we learnt about basics of Application State in Windows Phone 7 Application. We discussed about the steps to pass value from one page to another using the Application State. In this chapter, we will learn more on the same with a small and simple demo.


So, read to know about it and learn the way of sharing data between pages using state. At the end, please provide your feedback. Don't forget to share it to the community.

Weekly News Digest @SilverlightZone - 05-June-2011 to 11-June-2011

Here comes this week's News Digest of Silverlight-Zone.com. This time we have total 74 news items on various articles based on Silverlight, Windows Phone 7, LightSwitch etc. Also contains some tips and other posts on MVVM, XAML and Blend.


Most popular posts were "Silverlight Elevator Pitch", "War between Silverlight, HTML & Windows 8", "Bing Map Control for Windows Phone 7", "Is Silverlight Dead? No, it's not. It's the heart of WP7, Windows 8, XNA" and "All about WP7 Emulator".


Read more to find those interesting posts. Also, find the daily news digest links for the last week here, in case you missed the posts.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 10 - What is Application State?

Last two days, we discussed about Windows Phone 7 Page State. We learnt about saving and retrieving state of a page whenever require. Page State defines the current visual state of application page. Page state is accessible within that page. But think about a condition where you want to save values to the state and want to access them across the application. Then what to do? You have the option to use the Application State in that case.


Application State stores data values which can be accessible by multiple pages. In this tutorial chapter, we will learn about Application State and in the next chapter, we will see an actual implementation of the same with a small demo. Read to know more about Application State.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 9 - Page State Management

Yesterday we discussed the basic theory on Windows Phone 7 Page State. We came to know what is this and when to use this. We also came to know the way to implement the state management. In this chapter of the tutorial series, we will learn more about Page State Management in Windows Phone 7.1 with a small application.


After reading this tutorial chapter, you will be able to store page state, retrieve and clear them on your need. Read to know more about this topic, share the link to others and ask any queries if you have at the end of the post.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 8 - What is Page State?

Sometime you may want to save the values present in your page while switching from one page to another page, sometime you may want to store the values while switching application between foreground and background.


When you are switching from one application to the other, the first app enters into the deactivated mode. At that time you can store the current state of the page and display them back again by retrieving those values from page state once you return to the first app.


In this chapter we will discuss about the page state. This will help you to know the basics about it, very good for a beginner to jump start with it.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 7 - Know about Application Lifecycle

The Windows Phone 7.1 application lifecycle has been designed in a way that it can run multiple applications in the background. Today we will discuss about the Lifecycle of Windows Phone 7 (Mango) apps.


Here we will learn about various states of Windows Phone 7 application life cycle. This is an important chapter of the tutorial series to learn about the execution model before developing any application product. Read to know more about this topic and at the end don't hesitate to leave your feedback or queries if any.

Silverlight 5 Features Local File System Access without using COM API

Do you know that, you can now access local files and folders in Silverlight 5? Yes, you heard right. Earlier to Silverlight 5 it was only limited to trusted location like My Documents folder, means it was only possible to read/write in My Documents. Now using Silverlight 5 you can do such operation in any files or folders.


Let's discuss more on this topic. After reading this post, you will be able to read/write to/from any file in local file system. Also you will be able to get information about System Resources. Read to know more.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 6 - Working with Navigation

Today in this Windows Phone 7 Tutorial, we will discuss on Navigation Service and Navigation Context. We will create a small demo application to showcase the functionality of those class. We will navigate from one page to another and then again use the history to return back to the previous page.


In this chapter, we will use a case study of showing customer details in multiple page and using that demo we will learn about Navigation in Windows Phone 7 series. Read to learn more on it. Source code is available at the end of the post.

What's New in Silverlight 5? Download PUG Event Slides and Demos

Yesterday I attended the PUG Event and delivered 1 hour session on Silverlight 5 Beta features. I demonstrated some important features too. Here in this blog post, I am going to share the "What's New in Silverlight 5?" slides. You can view it online and if you want, you can download to view it offline.


Also, I am sharing the demo projects that I used during the session. You can freely download them from the attached links. Earlier I published some articles on these features, sharing their links too so that, you can read them and understand in depth.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 5 - Design Guidelines for Application Bar

In the last chapter of the series, we learnt about Application bar and the uses of it using a small demo application. We described about Icon buttons and Menu items too.


You can add an application bar to your page both from XAML and code behind. There are some design guidelines for Application bar and a developer must know about these before designing and developing their Windows Phone application. In this chapter, we will discuss about them. Read to know more and don't forget to share them to your colleagues and followers.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 4 - Application Bar

Application Bar is a tiny toolbar for your page to do some specific operation. Using this, you can easily add a toolbar for your application pages. It is a combination of 1-4 icon buttons and/or a collection of menu items.


In my previous post, we already discussed about the class. Today we will discuss more on this topic. We will also create a small demo application to showcase the use of ApplicationBar. Read to know more and don't forget to share your feedback.

First look to Microsoft Windows 8 User Interface

Yesterday, 1st June 2011 Microsoft demonstrated their next generation Windows Operating System at the D9 conference which internally called as “Windows 8”. It supports touch screen and can operate with/without a Mouse or Keyboard using the touch APIs and onscreen keyboard.


The video demonstrates the power of flexibility and dynamic user experience. To know more about it and watch the video demonstration of the first preview, read the complete post.

Windows Phone 7 (Mango) Tutorial - 3 - Know more about PhoneApplicationPage

In our last post of the series, we learned about the base class "Page" and Here in this post we will learn about "PhoneApplicationPage" which is root of any Windows Phone 7 page. Before jumping to the core in depth, a beginner must know all these things. As I am also exploring these for the first time, sharing the same knowledge with you.


I hope that, these series of posts will be helpful to a beginner. If you want to know more about PhoneApplicationPage class, read this post to learn about it.

Monthly News Digest @SilverlightZone - May 2011

Silverlight-Zone.com completed it's 5 months with more than 1,700 news items. Thank you everyone for supporting us all the time. In May, we aggregated 308 posts in Silverlight-Zone and shared all these links over Twitter and Facebook page to reach out to maximum people.


In this post I am going to share you the best picks of the month. Top rated posts were on Windows Phone 7 by Doug Holland, Naveed Tejani, Paul, Amit Chatterjee and Abhishek Sur. Read to find out the top links.

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