Great Line-of-Business Controls for WPF

I'm delighted to see that Infragistics have just released their NetAdvantage control set for WPF. It's a huge download: over 100MB, so either the controls are very big, the documentation is extremely verbose, or there are lots of samples included! This control set nicely fills the gaps in the capabilities currently provided by WPF, including a data grid, charting controls and an Office ribbon implementation that looks pixel-perfect to me.

Complex controls like an Office ribbon clearly benefit hugely from XAML. The ability to declaratively create nested collections really makes what would otherwise be a painstaking and error-prone task really easy. In the case of Infragistics' ribbon, you just declare a XamRibbon element that contains a RibbonTabItem that contains a ButtonGroup that contains the constituent buttons. It's almost self-documenting, because it so closely parallels the actual visual structure of the ribbon. Adjusting the visual theme of the ribbon is as easy as any other WPF project - just merge in a new resource dictionary containing the changes you want to make. We've recently released a ribbon ourselves as part of an MFC feature pack for C++ developers, but the difference in complexity ably demonstrates why WPF is such a powerful platform for building heavy-duty UI.

In the interest of fairness, I should also highlight some of the other great controls out there: Xceed have a great (free) data grid, ComponentOne also have a data grid and chart control, along with a bunch of calendaring components, DevComponents also have a very impressive Office ribbon and a Visual Studio-esque docking control, IdentityMine have a 3D carousel as part of their Blendables toolkit, and Actipro have yet another Office ribbon along with a wizard control.

Shamelessly stolen from the Infragistics product manager's blog, here's a screenshot that shows off the kind of application you can build very quickly with this control set:WPF Application

Comments (9)

  1. Anonymous says:

    In a great blog listing   today, Tim Sneath discusses Infragistics just released NetAdvantage control

  2. itowlson says:

    Hi Tim,

    Good to see the WPF control market beginning to take off, and that people are beginning to recognise that WPF is a viable platform for real line of business apps, not just sparkleware.  I’ve written about the value of WPF for line of business apps and I think the lack of controls is probably the main thing that has been holding it back.

    Since you’re listing products, I thought you might also like to know that there is also now a Property Grid control for WPF.  (Disclosure: I work for the company that created this product.)  Details at if you’re interested.



  3. Anonymous says:

    Don’t forget about the Divelements SandRibbon for WPF (

  4. Anonymous says:

    This control package is for anybody who have been wondering if WPF is ready for the enterprise. WPF has

  5. Anonymous says:

    It’s great to see the big players getting into the WPF market and beginning to offer a significant number of controls. Apart from the learning curve, the lack of controls is one of the biggest barriers to WPF adoption, in my opinion. I for one am looking for a tab-based MDI control, like the one in Infragistic’s WinForms suite, that facilitates menu merging for a couple of applications that I work on.

  6. If you want MDI, tabbed documents and dockable windows in WPF you can look no further than the URL below.

  7. Anonymous says:

    If you live in New York, Atlanta, San Antonio, or San Francisco, that is.  That’s because today

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