European Silverlight 4 & Silverlight 5 Hosting BLOG

BLOG about Silverlight 5 Hosting and Its Techologies - Dedicated to European Windows Hosting Customer

HostForLIFE.eu Proudly Announces Microsoft SQL Server 2014 Hosting

clock April 7, 2014 11:09 by author Peter
HostForLIFE.eu was established to cater to an under served market in the hosting industry; web hosting for customers who want excellent service. HostForLIFE.eu a worldwide provider of hosting has announced the latest release of Microsoft's widely-used SQL relational database management system SQL Server Server 2014. You can take advantage of the powerful SQL Server Server 2014 technology in all Windows Shared Hosting, Windows Reseller Hosting and Windows Cloud Hosting Packages! In addition, SQL Server 2014 Hosting provides customers to build mission-critical applications and Big Data solutions using high-performance, in-memory technology across OLTP, data warehousing, business intelligence and analytics workloads without having to buy expensive add-ons or high-end appliances. 

SQL Server 2014 accelerates reliable, mission critical applications with a new in-memory OLTP engine that can deliver on average 10x, and up to 30x transactional performance gains. For Data Warehousing, the new updatable in-memory column store can query 100x faster than legacy solutions. The first new option is Microsoft SQL Server 2014 Hosting, which is available to customers from today. With the public release just last week of Microsoft’s latest version of their premier database product, HostForLIFE has been quick to respond with updated their shared server configurations.For more information about this new product, please visit http://hostforlife.eu/European-SQL-Server-2014-Hosting

About Us:
HostForLIFE.eu is awarded Top No#1 SPOTLIGHT Recommended Hosting Partner by Microsoft (see http://www.microsoft.com/web/hosting/HostingProvider/Details/953). Our service is ranked the highest top #1 spot in several European countries, such as: Germany, Italy, Netherlands, France, Belgium, United Kingdom, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland and other European countries. Besides this award, we have also won several awards from reputable organizations in the hosting industry and the detail can be found on our official website.


Press Release - Wordpress 3.8 Hosting with HostForLIFE.eu from Only €3.00/month

clock January 23, 2014 10:41 by author Scott

HostForLIFE.eu proudly launches the support of WordPress 3.8 on all their newest Windows Server environment. HostForLIFE.eu WordPress 3.8 Hosting plan starts from just as low as €3.00/month only.

WordPress is a flexible platform which helps to create your new websites with the CMS (content management system). There are lots of benefits in using the WordPress blogging platform like quick installation, self updating, open source platform, lots of plug-ins on the database and more options for website themes and the latest version is 3.8 with lots of awesome features.

WordPress 3.8 was released in December 2013, which introduces a brand new, completely updated admin design: with a fresh, uncluttered aesthetic that embraces clarity and simplicity; new typography (Open Sans) that’s optimized for both desktop and mobile viewing; and superior contrast that makes the whole dashboard better looking and easier to navigate.

HostForLIFE.eu is a popular online WordPress hosting service provider catering to those people who face such issues. The company has managed to build a strong client base in a very short period of time. It is known for offering ultra-fast, fully-managed and secured services in the competitive market.

Another wonderful feature of WordPress 3.8 is that it uses vector-based icons in the admin dashboard. This eliminates the need for pixel-based icons. With vector-based icons, the admin dashboard loads faster and the icons look sharper. No matter what device you use – whether it’s a smartphone, tablet, or a laptop computer, the icons actually scale to fit your screen.

WordPress 3.8 is a great platform to build your web presence with. HostForLIFE.eu can help customize any web software that company wishes to utilize. Further information and the full range of features WordPress 3.8 Hosting can be viewed here http://www.hostforlife.eu.

 



Press Release - European HostForLIFE.eu Proudly Launches Umbraco 7 Hosting

clock January 15, 2014 11:33 by author Scott

HostForLIFE.eu, a leading Windows web hosting provider with innovative technology solutions and a dedicated professional services team, today announced the supports for Umbraco 7 Hosting plan due to high demand of Umbraco 7 CMS users in Europe. Umbraco 7 features the stable engine of Umbraco 6 powering hundreds of thousands of websites, but now enriched with a completely new, remarkably fast and simple user interface.

Umbraco is fast becoming the leading .NET based, license-free (open-source) content management system. It is an enterprise level CMS with a fantastic user-interface and an incredibly flexible framework which is both scalable and easy to use. Umbraco is used on more than 85,000 websites, including sites for large companies such as Microsoft and Toyota.

HostForLIFE.eu is a popular online Umbraco 7 hosting service provider catering to those people who face such issues. The company has managed to build a strong client base in a very short period of time. It is known for offering ultra-fast, fully-managed and secured services in the competitive market.

Umbraco has given a lot of thought to the user experience of their CMS. The interface uses a navigational flow and editing tools that anybody using Windows Explorer and Microsoft Word will immediately recognise. Your site structure sits in a tree view - just like Windows Explorer. Anybody with experience using Microsoft Word, can use Umbraco's simple rich text editing (RTE) interface.

"Umbraco 7 is easy to install within few clicks, special thanks to HostForLIFE.eu special designed user friendly web hosting control panel systems." - Ivan Carlos, one of the many HostForLIFE.eu satisfying clients.

Further information and the full range of features Umbraco 7 Hosting can be viewed here http://hostforlife.eu/European-Umbraco-7-Hosting.



Press Release - European HostForLIFE.eu Proudly Launches DotNetNuke 7.1 Hosting

clock January 7, 2014 07:20 by author Scott

HostForLIFE.eu proudly launches the support of DotNetNuke 7.1 on all our newest Windows Server 2012 environment. Our European DotNetNuke 7.1 Hosting plan starts from just as low as €3.00/month only and this plan has supported ASP.NET 4.5, ASP.NET MVC 4 and SQL Server 2012.

DotNetNuke (DNN) has evolved to become one of the most recognizable open source Content Management systems. Basically it is based on the Microsoft platform, i.e. ASP.NET, C#, SQL, jQuery etc. As a web development platform, DotNetNuke provides a solid base platform.

HostForLIFE.eu clients are specialized in providing supports for DotNetNuke CMS for many years. We are glad to provide support for European DotNetNuke CMS hosting users with advices and troubleshooting for our clients website when necessary.

DNN 7.1 provides intuitive drag-n-drop design feature, streamlined interface, built in social authentication providers, fully integrated SEO (Search Engine Optimization), membership system, granular access control, and many other features. In fact DNN 7 is all in one web development and content management system. No longer is the site design realm of just technically inclined, DNN 7 delivers advanced features and capabilities that are not matched by other CMS systems. In fact it is most well rounded CMS system available to date.

DotNetNuke 7.1 is a great platform to build your web presence with. HostForLIFE.eu can help customize any web software that company wishes to utilize. Further information and the full range of features DotNetNuke 7.1 Hosting can be viewed here http://hostforlife.eu/European-DotNetNuke-71-Hosting.



European Silverlight 5 Hosting - Amsterdam :: Telerik RadCoverFlow in SilverLight 5

clock December 20, 2013 06:18 by author Patrick

Today, in this article let's play around with another interesting concept of Telerik RadControls.

What is RadCoverFlow?
In simple terms "It enables to provide a rich GUI interface which navigates through a group of images.".

Step 1: The complete code of MainPage.xaml looks like this:

<UserControl x:Class="RadCoverApplication.MainPage"xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation" xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml"xmlns:d="http://schemas.microsoft.com/expression/blend/2008" xmlns:mc="http://schemas.openxmlformats.org/markup-compatibility/2006"xmlns:telerik="http://schemas.telerik.com/2008/xaml/presentation"mc:Ignorable="d" d:DesignWidth="640" d:DesignHeight="480">
    <Grid x:Name="LayoutRoot">
        <telerik:RadCoverFlow Margin="126,12,108,61" Name="radCoverFlow1" OffsetX="0"OffsetY="40"CameraViewpoint="Top"DistanceBetweenItems="20"DistanceFromSelectedItem="5"
RotationY="56"IsReflectionEnabled="True"ItemScale="0.60">
            <Image Source="pics/e6e22af6f3224593a6c658b3d3f7a1fd.jpg"  Width="400" Height="120"></Image>
            <Image Source="pics/Microsoft-.NET-logo-white.png"  Width="400" Height="120"></Image>
            <Image Source="pics/microsoft-windows-8.jpg" Width="400" Height="120"></Image>
            <Image Source="pics/microsoft (1).jpg"  Width="400" Height="120"></Image>
            <Image Source="pics/Microsoft.jpg"  Width="400" Height="120"></Image>
        </telerik:RadCoverFlow>
    </Grid>
</UserControl>


Step 2: The complete code of MainPage.xaml.cs looks like this:

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Linq;
using System.Net;
using System.Windows;
using System.Windows.Controls;
using System.Windows.Documents;
using System.Windows.Input;
using System.Windows.Media;
using System.Windows.Media.Animation;
using System.Windows.Shapes;
namespace RadCoverApplication
{
    public partial class MainPage : UserControl
    {
        public MainPage()
        {
            InitializeComponent();
        }
    }
}

Step 3: The output of the application looks like this:

Step 4: The output of the left moved pics application looks like this:

Step 5: The output of the right moved pics application looks like this:

Hope this article is useful!



HostForLIFE.eu Proudly Launches Scalable Enterprise Email Hosting

clock December 17, 2013 09:31 by author Patrick

HostForLIFE.eu, a leading Windows web hosting provider with innovative technology solutions and a dedicated professional services team proudly announces Enterprise Email Hosting for all costumer. HostForLIFE.eu aim to help you grow your bottom line whether it is driving direct sales from emails, driving website traffic or delivering outstanding service.

Enterprise Email is a great tool for communicating to existing customers, or individuals who know your organization well enough and have interest in opting-in to receive your e-mail. Your promotions, sales and offers get their attention, meet a need, and encourage them to do more business with you.  What e-mail marketing typically doesn’t do very effectively is attract the attention of new customers.

Robert Junior and Sophia Levine from HostForLIFE.eu say:
"Once a business has secured a domain name, we setup an email hosting account for them and they can choose any email account they wish.  Most popular email accounts for small business are sales, info and accounts, although it can be virtually anything once you own your own domain name." Robert says.

"I would expect that once more small business owners had the flexibility to mange their own email hosting, they would save money on their monthly internet costs because there are always cheaper deals being promoted. Of course email hosting does not replace your internet service, but it enables you to switch to a cheaper plan and not loose contact with your customers."  Sophia says.

"Our clients have found that they are able to save money on their internet services because once they no longer rely to manage their email, they can shop around for a better deal, save some money and take their Email Hosting with them.  Having your own domain name and email hosting also improves your business image far more that an ISP account or hotmail email address." Robert says.

"What many small business owners often struggle with is continuing to pay high internet service costs to keep their allocated ISP email address if they use their ISP email for their business.  What people do not realise is that if they were to purchase their own .com or etc domain name they have a unique email address like 'sales@hostforlife.eu'.  It means they can move to a cheaper ISP if they find a better deal and not risk losing contact with their business contacts." Sophia Says.

HostForLIFE.eu provides a full suite of self-service marketing solutions with the following features: Total Bulk Email up to 10.000 emails/month with total maibox is 5, users receive 2 GB mailbox quota, a platform fully support Blackberry, SPF/DKIM/TXT, WebMail Access, and POP/SMTP/IMAP.

Are you sending direct mails to your customers just once a month or every three days? Simply choose the plan that suits you the most. All price plans are based on actual use of the system - from 10,000 e-mails sent out in a month starting at €8.00!

Further information and the full range of features Enterprise Email Hosting can be viewed here http://www.hostforlife.eu.




European Silverlight 5 Hosting - Amsterdam :: Working with the Slider Control in Silverlight 5

clock December 12, 2013 09:32 by author Patrick

The Slider control in Silverlight 5 is used to allow a user to select from a range of values by sliding it along a track. You can create a horizontal or vertical slider. You can specify the range of values and the precision of movement too.
The Slider class that represents this control is defined in the System.Windows.Controls namespace. Some of the commonly used properties of this class are:

To demonstrate the use of the Slider control, let us create a TextBox with some text which is enlarged or shrunk depending upon the slider value. Create a Silverlight 5 application and replace the Grid tag with the Canvas tag. Drag and drop the Slider from the Toolbox into your XAML code (between the Canvas tags). Also drag and drop an TextBox control. The sole reason for using a TextBox here instead of TextBlock is that a TextBlock does not support the Background property and we wish to specify a background here for the control containing the text.

Configure the properties of the controls as shown below:

<UserControl x:Class="Imager.MainPage"
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml"
    xmlns:d="http://schemas.microsoft.com/expression/blend/2008" xmlns:mc="http://schemas.openxmlformats.org/markup-compatibility/2006"
      mc:Ignorable="d" d:DesignWidth="640" d:DesignHeight="480">
     <Canvas x:Name="LayoutRoot" Width="640" Height="480">
         <TextBox Name="txtMsg" Canvas.Left="40" Canvas.Top="30" Height="22" Width="132" Text="Silverlight Rocks!" Background="Aqua" IsReadOnly="True"  />
         <Slider Name="slider"  Background="Transparent" Height="25" Width="150" Maximum="150" Minimum="0" SmallChange="5" ValueChanged="Slider_ValueChanged" IsDirectionReversed="False" ></Slider>

     </Canvas>
</UserControl>

The code accomplishes the following:

  • Creates a canvas of height 480 and width 640
  • Creates a TextBox with the text "Silverlight Rocks!" and positions it on the canvas at 40,30 location.
  • Creates a Slider control with transparent background, maximum 150 and minimum 0, small change (precision of movement) as 5 and height and width as 25 and 150 respectively.
  • Creates an event handler for Value Changed event of Slider.

Now open the MainPage.xaml.cs and add the following code:
public partial class MainPage : UserControl

    {
        double start, end, height, width, size;
        public MainPage()
        {
             InitializeComponent();
             //original values of the slider

            start = slider.Minimum;
            end = slider.Maximum;

            //original height and width of the text box

            height = txtMsg.Height;
            width = txtMsg.Width;
            size = txtMsg.FontSize; 
        }
        private void Slider_ValueChanged(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<double> e)
        {
            // If slider has reached the beginning

            if (e.NewValue == start)
            {
                txtMsg.Height = height;
                txtMsg.Width = width;
                txtMsg.FontSize = size;
            }

            //if slider has moved forward

            if (e.NewValue > e.OldValue)
            {
                txtMsg.Height = height + e.NewValue;
                txtMsg.Width = width + e.NewValue;
                txtMsg.FontSize += 1;
            }
            else //if slider has moved backward
            {
                txtMsg.Height = txtMsg.Height - (e.OldValue-e.NewValue);
                txtMsg.Width = txtMsg.Width - (e.OldValue - e.NewValue);
                txtMsg.FontSize -= 1;
            }
        }
    }

The logic in this code is self explanatory from the comments. When you build and execute your solution and move the slider, you will see the text increasing or decreasing in size. Though this was a simple demonstration, in actual scenarios, you can customize the Slider control through its various properties. You can also enhance its design characteristics in Expression Blend 4 if required.



European Silverlight 4.0 Hosting - Amsterdam :: How To Control Playback of Media Using a MediaElement of Silverlight?

clock December 10, 2013 06:02 by author Patrick

We can integrate media into our Silverlight pages and WPF UserControls. The MediaElement object provides several media-specific properties. The following list describes the commonly used properties.

  •     AutoPlay: Specifies whether the MediaElement should begin playing automatically. The default value is True.
  •     IsMuted: Specifies whether the MediaElement is silenced. A value of True mutes the MediaElement. The default value is False.
  •     Stretch: Specifies how video is stretched to fill the MediaElement object. Possible values are None, Uniform, UniformToFill, and Fill. The default is Fill.
  •     Volume: Specifies the volume of the MediaElement object’s audio as a value from 0 to 1, with 1 being the loudest. The default value is 0.5.


In addition to its media-specific properties, MediaElement also has all the properties of a UIElement, such as Opacity and Clip.

 


Controlling Media Playback

You can control media playback by using the Play, Pause, and Stop methods of a MediaElement object.

<Canvas
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/client/2007"
        xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml" Loaded="CanvasLoaded">
    <MediaElement x:Name="MyMedia" Stretch="Uniform"
        Source="/images/Silverlight_Small.wmv" Height="200" Width="200" />
  <Canvas x:Name="ButtonPanel">
      <Canvas Background="Red" Canvas.Left="10" Canvas.Top="185" Height="25" Width="50"
        MouseLeftButtonDown="StopMedia" Cursor="Hand">
        <Rectangle Height="30" Width="40" Canvas.Left="10" />
        <TextBlock Text="Stop" Canvas.Left="10" Foreground="Yellow" />
       </Canvas>
       
       <Canvas Background="Green" Canvas.Left="70" Canvas.Top="185" Height="25" Width="50"
        MouseLeftButtonDown="PlayMedia" Cursor="Hand">
        <Rectangle Height="30" Width="40" Canvas.Left="10" />
        <TextBlock Text="Play" Canvas.Left="10" Foreground="Yellow" />
       </Canvas>
       
       <Canvas Background="Blue" Canvas.Left="130" Canvas.Top="185" Height="25" Width="60"
        MouseLeftButtonDown="PauseMedia" Cursor="Hand">
        <Rectangle Height="30" Width="40" Canvas.Left="10" />
        <TextBlock Text="Pause" Canvas.Left="10" Foreground="Yellow" />
       </Canvas>
       
       <Canvas Background="Black" Canvas.Left="10" Canvas.Top="215" Height="25" Width="180"
        MouseLeftButtonDown="ToggleFullScreen" Cursor="Hand">
        <Rectangle Height="30" Width="40" Canvas.Left="10" />
        <TextBlock Text="Full Screen" Canvas.Left="55" Foreground="Yellow" />
       </Canvas>
    </Canvas>
  </Canvas>    

// --------- JavaScript Code to control the Media object -------------
// Fires when Canvas is loaded
function CanvasLoaded(sender, args)
{
    var canvas = sender.getHost();
    canvas.content.onfullScreenChange = onFullScreenChanged;                            
}
// Fires when Full screen is changed
function onFullScreenChanged(sender, args)
{
    var canvas = sender.getHost();
    var buttonPanel = sender.findName("ButtonPanel");
    // Change the opacity of the button panel so that in the full screen it disappears and in normal screen it appears
    if (canvas.content.fullScreen == true)
        buttonPanel.opacity = 0;
    else
        buttonPanel.opacity = 1;
    // change the media object height and width to the canvas height and width
    var media = sender.findName("MyMedia");
    media.width = canvas.content.actualWidth;
    media.height = canvas.content.actualHeight;
}
//Fires when Full Screen button is clicked
function ToggleFullScreen(sender, args)
{
    var canvas = sender.getHost();
    canvas.content.fullScreen = !canvas.content.fullScreen;
}
// Fires when Stop button is clicked
function StopMedia(sender, args)
{
    sender.findName("MyMedia").stop();
}
// Fires when Play button is clicked
function PlayMedia(sender, args)
{
    sender.findName("MyMedia").play();
}
// Fires when Pause button is clicked
function PauseMedia(sender, args)
{
    sender.findName("MyMedia").pause();

Hope this helps!!



European Silverlight 5 Hosting - Amsterdam :: Vector and Bitmap Printing for Reports in Silverlight 5

clock October 17, 2013 07:11 by author Scott

Printing Basics

Just as it was in Silverlight 4, Printing is centered around the PrintDocument class, found in System.Windows.Printing. This class has three primary events: BeginPrint, EndPrint, and PrintPage, which are your hooks into the printing system. You do setup in BeginPrint, teardown in EndPrint, and all the actual page production in PrintPage.

Page Markup

Here's the simple test page XAML I used for this printing example.

<Grid x:Name="LayoutRoot" Background="White">
    <Button Content="Print Bitmap"
            Height="23"
            HorizontalAlignment="Left"
            Margin="141,79,0,0"
            Name="PrintBitmap"
            VerticalAlignment="Top"
            Width="95"
            Click="PrintBitmap_Click" />
    <Button Content="Print Vector"
            Height="23"
            HorizontalAlignment="Left"
            Margin="141,108,0,0"
            Name="PrintVector"
            VerticalAlignment="Top"
            Width="95"
            Click="PrintVector_Click" />
    <Button Content="Force Vector"
            Height="23"
            HorizontalAlignment="Left"
            Margin="141,137,0,0"
            Name="PrintVectorForced
            VerticalAlignment="Top"
            Width="95"
            Click="PrintVectorForced_Click" />
</Grid>

The application UI looks really simple, just three buttons on a page. This is one of my finest designs.

Next, I'll wire up an event handler for each button, and use it to demonstrate the behavior of the three different printing approaches.

Page Code for Basic Vector Printing

Here's the code for a basic vector print of 30 rows.

// Tests basic (not forced) vector printing  
private void PrintVector_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
{
    PrintDocument doc = new PrintDocument();

    doc.PrintPage += (s, ea) =>
        {
            StackPanel printPanel = new StackPanel();

            Random rnd = new Random();

            for (int i = 0; i < 30; i++)
            {                  
                TextBlock row = new TextBlock();
                row.Text = "This is row " + i + " of the current page being printed in vector mode.";                      

                printPanel.Children.Add(row);
            }

            ea.PageVisual = printPanel;
            ea.HasMorePages = false;
        };

    PrinterFallbackSettings settings = new PrinterFallbackSettings();

    doc.Print("Silverlight Vector Print");
}

Note that the PageVisual is assigned after the printPanel is populated. If you assign it prior, and do not force a recalculation of layout (in my example, the panel isn't in the visual tree, but layout is calculated with you assign PageVisual), you'll get a StackPanel with 30 items all piled on each other in the same row. The easiest way to fix this is to assign the PageVisual after the visual has all its children populated.

You could also point the PageVisual to an on-screen visual if you desire. If you're going to do that, you'll need to unhook the visual from the tree first, as a single element cannot have two parents.

If you have no more pages to print other than this one, set HasMorePages to false. If you have additional pages after this one, set it to true.

Printer Fallback Settings and Forcing Vector Printing Mode

New in Silverlight 5 is the PrinterFallbackSettings class. This class is used by one of the overloads of PrintDocument.Print to set two options: ForceVector and OpacityThreshold.

In the previous example, if you had any elements that had opacity other than 1.0, perspective transforms, or other things PostScript doesn't understand, Silverlight would silently fall back to bitmap-based printing.

ForceVector forces Silverlight to print in vector mode, assuming you have a PostScript-enabled printer driver, even when postscript-incompatible items exist in the element tree assigned to PageVisual. You use this in tandem with OpacityThreshold. The Opacity threshold sets the value over which Silverlight will treat an element's opacity as 1.0 to support PostScript printing.

// tests trying to force vector printing mode
private void PrintVectorForced_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
{
    PrintDocument doc = new PrintDocument();

    doc.PrintPage += (s, ea) =>
    {
        StackPanel printPanel = new StackPanel();

        Random rnd = new Random();

        for (int i = 0; i < 30; i++)
        {
            TextBlock row = new TextBlock();
            row.Opacity = (rnd.Next(3, 10)) / 10.0;
            row.Text = "This is row " + i + " of the current page being printed. Opacity is " + row.Opacity;

            printPanel.Children.Add(row);
        }

        ea.PageVisual = printPanel;
        ea.HasMorePages = false;
    };

    PrinterFallbackSettings settings = new PrinterFallbackSettings();
    settings.ForceVector = true;
    settings.OpacityThreshold = 0.5;

    doc.Print("Silverlight Forced Vector Print", settings);
}

If your content or your printer doesn't support PostScript printing, Silverlight automatically falls back to sending an uncompressed bitmap to the printer. If your printer doesn't support PostScript, you'll see the effect of opacity in the printed results (some items lighter colored than others, for example) as the fallback bitmap mode supports opacity.

Printing in Bitmap Mode

Sometimes you know you want to print in bitmap mode. Rather than let vector mode fall back to bitmap, you can simply force bitmap printing from the start. If you have a PostScript compatible printer and driver, this is quite a bit faster than it was in Silverlight 4, as the bitmap is compressed. If you don't have a PostScript driver, it sends a plain old uncompressed bitmap just like Silverlight 4.

// tests printing in bitmap mode
private void PrintBitmap_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
{
    PrintDocument doc = new PrintDocument();

    doc.PrintPage += (s, ea) =>
    {
        StackPanel printPanel = new StackPanel();

        Random rnd = new Random();

        for (int i = 0; i < 30; i++)
        {
            TextBlock row = new TextBlock();
            row.Opacity = (rnd.Next(3, 10)) / 10.0;
            row.Text = "This is row " + i + " of the current page being printed in bitmap mode. Opacity is " + row.Opacity;

            printPanel.Children.Add(row);
        }

        ea.PageVisual = printPanel;
        ea.HasMorePages = false;
    };

    doc.PrintBitmap("Silverlight Bitmap Print");
}

Bitmap mode will preserve the opacity settings, as well as ensure render transforms are printed (assuming you apply them) etc. It's not the best approach for printing a report, but it's the highest-fidelity approach for printing visuals when you want to do the equivalent of a print-screen.

The resolution of the bitmap sent is set to the selected printer resolution, typically 600dpi.

Efficient Printing

So, for the most efficient printing of multi-page reports, you'll want to make sure you do the following:

  • Have a PostScript-compatible printer with an appropriate PostScript driver (typically ends with " PS")
  • Avoid Opacity other than 1.0 in your elements to be printed (or use the appropriate fallback settings)
  • Leave out perspective transforms, 3d, and other things not compatible with PostScript printing.


European WCF 4.5 Hosting - Amsterdam :: Improvement Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) in .NET 4.5

clock October 1, 2013 09:03 by author Scott

New versions of the Windows Workflow Foundation (WF) and Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) are available in the .NET Framework 4.5, which is included with Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8. The upgrades improve the developer experience and the manageability of applications built using the foundations, while adding new capabilities. Some benefits, such as WF performance improvements and WCF configuration simplification can be realized for existing applications without requiring developers to make modifications. However, a majority of the enhancements are most helpful when writing new code.

WF 4.5 Brings Better Designer, Versioning

WF offers a specialized programming environment for business processes, called workflows. WF 4.5 improves on the previous version, WF 4, while providing backward compatibility.

WF Simplifies Business Process Programming

WF consists of programming interfaces, design and debugging tools, and a runtime engine (which is separate from the common language runtime included with the .NET Framework) that enable the implementation and execution of workflow processes, reducing the amount of code a developer must write.

Workflows are specialized programs that automate custom, often long-running, business processes and enforce business rules in applications. Using software to automate workflows can relieve workers from having to perform repetitive and mechanical tasks, ensure that required procedures are consistently followed, and improve the reliability, tracking, and transparency of those procedures. Several Microsoft products, including SharePoint Server, Dynamics CRM, Dynamics AX, and Team Foundation Server employ WF for workflows.

Developers build workflows in WF by assembling groups of activities, which represent the tasks and logic that comprise a business process, using the WF visual designer which generates XAML script, or by writing C# or Visual Basic (VB) code. WF includes a base set of activities that help build the basic structure of workflows, such as control loops and parallel execution paths, and developers can write custom activities that execute code specific to an application's needs. Microsoft applications integrate with WF by offering custom activities that can be used in workflows to deliver product functionality (such as checking an item into a SharePoint document library).

WF 4.5 Improves on WF 4, Maintains Compatibility

WF 4.5 builds on WF 4, which was a major upgrade that wasn't entirely backward compatible with its predecessor, WF 3.5. Microsoft calls WF 4.5 an additive update, implying that it is fully backward compatible with WF 4. WF 4.5 and WF 4 cannot coexist in a Windows installation, since installing .NET 4.5 replaces .NET 4.

Enhancements in WF 4.5 continue on themes addressed in WF 4, such as simplified development and better performance, and include the following:

Contract-first development. WF is often used in combination with WCF to implement workflows that communicate with remote Web services. Contract-first development in WF automatically generates activity objects for existing WCF services, and developers can use these in the WF designer, reducing the work required to create workflows that use Web services.

C# expressions. Code expressions can be included within workflow activities for tasks such as creating output strings. Previously, only VB could be used to write these expressions (even within C# workflow projects), but now C# is supported as well.

More state machine support. A state machine defines a process that exists within one of multiple possible states until an event causes it to move to a different state. States can be revisited indefinitely, or the process can reach a final state. State machines can describe many types of processes, such as order fulfillment for businesses or chemical reactions for scientific research. WF 4.5 adds features for building state machines, including new activities, designer tools that reduce manual steps, and debugging capabilities.

Designer improvements. A graphical designer for building WF workflows is available in Visual Studio (VS), allowing developers to visually create workflows rather than defining them entirely within code (which is also supported). The WF 4.5 designer adds search features (although not replace), an outline view (similar to Word's Navigation pane), and a pan mode, which will help developers work with large workflows. The newest designer also allows annotations to be added to activities to assist search and enable better commenting of intended functionality. Auto-connect simplifies attaching new activities into a workflow, and auto-insert helps when placing an activity between two existing activities in a workflow.

The designer can also be hosted within other applications so that users don't need to run VS to work with workflows targeted for specific solution spaces, and so that users are limited to workflow elements that are relevant to an application domain. However, not all features available in the designer in VS are available when it is hosted elsewhere (for example, C# expressions and some search capabilities are not available).

Workflow versioning. Workflow processes are prone to revisions, but WF has not previously offered versioning support, leaving the task to developers and IT personnel. WF 4.5 introduces workflow identities, which allow the assignment of names and version numbers to workflow definitions. Multiple definitions can be deployed side by side, and running instances of a workflow can be identified by the definition they are using. This allows new workflow definitions to be deployed and used by new instances while old instances run to completion using an older definition. Further, a dynamic update feature allows existing instances to convert to a later workflow definition, provided the developer defines how the conversion should be handled.

Partial trust hosting. Previously, workflow code would have access to all permissions available to the host application, but in WF 4.5, workflows can run in a partially trusted AppDomain, limiting their capabilities to work with the system. Partial trust can reduce the security risk of using workflows obtained from third parties and can make using workflows safer in hosted multitenant deployments.

Better performance. VB expression support has been modified to deliver better runtime performance, which will improve the efficiency of workflows implemented with such expressions by upgrading to WF 4.5 without rewriting code.

WCF 4.5 Eases Configuration, Adds Communications Options

WCF provides developers with a message-oriented API that can be used to communicate over local networks or across the Internet using protocols such as HTTP, TCP, and Microsoft Message Queuing (MSMQ), reducing the amount of code and time required to integrate applications and enabling the implementation of service-oriented architectures.

The power of WCF is its ability to decouple a Web service's internal logic from the protocols used to send and receive messages, allowing either to be modified without affecting the other. The Web service logic is contained in the source code, while the communications protocol information is contained in a separate configuration file. This allows developers to create business logic and IT administrators to determine the best way to access that logic. The model also allows Microsoft to focus development on a single infrastructure and tool set that handles multiple messaging protocols, rather than developing separate solutions for each protocol.

WCF 4.5 aims to reduce configuration complexity and developer effort while improving performance and adding new communications options with enhancements that include the following:

Configuration file simplification. WCF uses XML-based configuration files to separate connection protocol information from code, but these files can be tedious to edit. Properties set to default values can be excluded in WCF 4.5 configuration files, shortening the files and reducing the complexity of working with them. Also, the VS XML editor now provides tooltips when working with a WCF configuration file to help developers understand elements and properties without opening separate documentation.

Asynchronous methods. .NET 4.5 has new elements that simplify the development effort required to write applications that perform tasks in parallel. Methods can be called asynchronously (so they run in a separate thread while the calling code path continues) with much less coding overhead than previously. WCF 4.5 supports methods that take advantage of the new .NET 4.5 asynchronous capabilities, helping developers create better performing WCF applications.

Portable libraries. A portable .NET Framework class library can run on different platforms such as Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and the Windows Store, eliminating the need to write multiple versions of code for tasks that run the same way on each platform. WCF 4.5 code (with some exceptions) can be used in portable class libraries, so an application's WCF code doesn't have to be rewritten for each platform.

Better message streaming. WCF 4.5 offers improved performance when messages are streamed by using asynchronous streaming, which allows process threads to be closed and reused while waiting on a response (previously, threads would hold system resources while waiting for a response). Also, performance is improved when messages are streamed by a service hosted in IIS, since ASP.NET will now send the message to WCF before the entire message is received (previously, ASP.NET would wait until the full message was received and buffered). This reduces memory usage and enables WCF to respond more quickly.

UDP and WebSocket bindings. WCF uses bindings to define how services communicate. Several binding types, such as HTTP, TCP, and MSMQ are included with WCF, and developers can define custom binding types for other communication mechanisms. WCF 4.5 adds bindings for UDP (which supports message broadcasting to multiple clients without soliciting a response) and WebSocket (which provides two-way TCP communication using HTTP or HTTPS ports with reduced overhead and better performance than HTTP).

 



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