Anybody ever wanted to clone a LightSwitch Screen?

[UPDATE: 20-JULY-2013] Xpert360 Lightning AIDE for LightSwitch.

The community addition has been discontinued for the foreseeable future. The complexities involved in the rapid releases of Visual Studio and LightSwitch versions have taken their toll. It became unfeasible for us to maintain it for free.

The LightSwitch Clone Screen feature is available now in the paid for AIDE for LightSwitch product. AIDE supports LightSwitch V2, V3 and soon V4 flavours of LightSwitch projects, in Visual Studio 2012 versions to Update 3. This includes rich client and html client support (Silverlight and HTML5). V4 support will be in the AIDE version targeting VS2013 RTM later in the year.

[UPDATE: 28-MAY-2012] Released VS2012 RC version in Visual Studio Gallery:

[UPDATE: 22-MAY-2012] VS2012 RC version passed tests today …

Here in our Xpert360 development labs we have been busy prototyping, designing, building and testing companion products for Visual Studio LightSwitch 2011 and 2012 RC.

When you try these products you will know why we consider them to be the essential LightSwitch companions. We are very excited by these tools and just don’t know how we ever managed without them.

We would like to dedicate the LightSwitch Screen Clone feature to the Microsoft LightSwitch Team who are continuing to enhance and deliver arguably the most awesome RAD platform.

Lightning Series FUSION - Entity List Details

Lightning Series FUSION – Contact entity in the prototype companion designer.

Take the following default LightSwitch List Detail screen for the Contacts entity served-up by the Lightning Series for Dynamics CRM Online data adapter. This entity has more than 150 properties and is unwieldly to manage in the standard IDE.

Xpert360 Lightning Series - Default Screen before a makeover

Default ListDetail screen for Dynamics CRM Online Contacts

After investing some 15 minutes frantically deleting, clicking and dragging items around in the LightSwitch screen design we are now approaching a half-usable screen design.

Xpert360 Lightning Series - LightSwitch screen in design

LightSwitch screen in design undergoes many iterations and there is no undo function!

We just invested considerable effort (in LightSwitch timescales!) modifying this read-only screen and we need a similar screen that allows the end-users to edit some of the Contact’s properties. Start again? No, just clone it!

Lightning Series Fusion - Clone Screen Menu Item

Lightning Series Fusion – Clone Screen Menu Item

Click to reload the LightSwitch LSML files and a few quick edits…

Lightning Series Fusion - Cloned Screen

FUSION – Cloned Screen generated and modified in a couple of minutes

  1. Add LightSwitch screen – 10 seconds
  2. Re-design screen – 15 minutes
  3. Clone screen – 10 seconds
  4. Time saved – priceless!

Community edition coming to your LightSwitch IDE desktop very soon!

So you got this far, still reading. I think I’ve got that friday feeling #FF so lets tease you some more. What if… I could transfer screens between projects. Why not include queries, entites and all my settings. What if… I could generate documentation, compare projects, mass generate screens, mass change property attributes, apply templates, localise my application in a few clicks. Yes, these are the things LightSwitch dreams are made of. What else would you want to do? What a wonderful LightSwitch world it would be! Coming soon too…

8 responses to “Anybody ever wanted to clone a LightSwitch Screen?

  1. Awesome! Can’t wait to try these out. And thanks for the dedication 🙂

    -Beth, LightSwitch Team

  2. Thanks Beth. We would like to send you a preview next week. We did want to include support for HTML client screens but unfortunately we don’t have our hands on the new LSML/XML yet!

  3. I want this, yesteday!

  4. Pingback: LightSwitch Community & Content Rollup–June 2012 - Beth Massi - Sharing the goodness - Site Home - MSDN Blogs

  5. Pingback: Windows Azure and Cloud Computing Posts for 7/10/2012+ - Windows Azure Blog

  6. Please, what is available to explain the new LSML/XML?

    • Nothing! We spent considerable time to understand and manipulate it all. Until VS2012 hits RTM and the HTML Client LSML changes become clearer than we are not planning to spend time documenting much.

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