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Building a Simple Custom Control in Silverlight 2

June 30, 2008

With the recent announcement of the Silverlight Controls Builder Contest, I thought it may be useful to post code that creates a very simple custom control. 

The example I’m posting isn’t even worth a screenshot as all the control does is render the text "Hello property_value_here".  Something like:

Hello Gilbert

The value of the sample is that it provides code and architecture to demonstrate the basics of creating a simple control. A few items to note:

  • The control lives in a separate assembly as the application
  • The generic.xaml file is used to define the default template of the control
  • DefaultStyleKey must be set in order for your control to show up without a custom template defined
  • A DependencyProperty is used to enable animation and binding
  • You can change the value by entering text in the TextBlock and clicking the button.

For a deeper look at creating custom controls I would recommend Karen Corby’s 4 part Parts & States Model with VisualStateManager.

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