If you've done much work with Bindings in Silverlight, you're probably aware that Silverlight doesn't support applying Bindings using a Style's Setter the same way its big brother WPF does. This limitation isn't a big deal at first because people don't tend to need that until they're more familiar with the platform and have started using MVVM and taking advantage of the ItemContainerStyle property. But once you're working with scenarios where it's relevant, being able to specify Bindings in a Setter can be extremely useful because it replaces a bunch of code/subclassing with a single line of XAML!

SetterValueBindingHelperDemo sample on Silverlight

 

Fortunately, it's possible to implement this feature outside the Silverlight framework! (Or at least to implement enough of it to cover nearly all the relevant scenarios.) I originally wrote SetterValueBindingHelper for Silverlight 3 as part of an application building exercise. Later on, I updated SetterValueBindingHelper to accommodate implementation changes in the Silverlight 4 platform - and was able to do so in a way that continued to work on Silverlight 3. So because Windows Phone 7 is based on Silverlight 3, I had a strong suspicion SetterValueBindingHelper would work there, too. But it wasn't until a couple of days ago that I had a chance to validate my theory - and now that I have, here's an updated version of the Silverlight sample for Windows Phone:

SetterValueBindingHelperDemo sample on Windows Phone 7

 

Other than converting the Silverlight sample's TreeView to a ListBox (because the former doesn't exist for Windows Phone), the sample works just the same on Windows Phone as on Silverlight. The code for SetterValueBindingHelper is nearly identical as well - the only difference being that the code to walk an application's assemblies for resolving attached property types can't be used because Windows Phone doesn't support the AssemblyPart.Load method. (But because this particular feature isn't used very often, its absence probably won't even be noticed.)

As a quick reminder, here's what a typical use looks like:

<ListBox.ItemContainerStyle>
    <Style TargetType="ListBoxItem">
        <!-- WPF syntax:
            <Setter Property="Foreground" Value="{Binding Color}"/> -->
        <Setter Property="delay:SetterValueBindingHelper.PropertyBinding">
            <Setter.Value>
                <delay:SetterValueBindingHelper
                    Property="Foreground"
                    Binding="{Binding Color}"/>
            </Setter.Value>
        </Setter>
    </Style>
</ListBox.ItemContainerStyle>
Aside: SetterValueBindingHelper supports more advanced scenarios, too - please refer to the previous post (or the original post) for information and examples.

 

[Click here to download the code for SetterValueBindingHelper along with sample applications for Silverlight 4 and Windows Phone 7.]

 

I've gotten a lot of great feedback from developers who have made use of SetterValueBindingHelper in their applications. I've found it quite helpful in my own projects, and I'm glad many of you have, too! With today's announcement, I hope another "generation" is able to use SetterValueBindingHelper to benefit from the many advantages of the Silverlight platform's rich data-binding support. :)