LightSwitch Cosmopolitan Shell and Theme for Visual Studio 11 Beta Released

LightSwitch Cosmopolitan Shell and Theme for Visual Studio 11 Beta Released

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We’ve just released the beta version of the LightSwitch Cosmopolitan Shell and Theme extension for VS11 Beta on VS Gallery!

We took your feedback and drew inspiration from the Silverlight Cosmopolitan theme in designing the extension. The shell and theme provides a modern UI to achieve a more immersive feel, simple and clean styling for the controls, as well as many other improvements:

  • Branding. The shell now displays your corporate logo (provided as part of your LightSwitch project) at the top of the application.
  • Navigation menu. Similar to many web-style applications, the navigation menu is now at the top of the application. When you click on a menu item, a dropdown will appear with a list of screens. This frees up more screen real estate to be devoted to the active screen, providing a more immersive experience for the users of your applications.
  • Command bar. We moved the screen command bar to the bottom of the application. This provides a better visual association between the commands and the screen.
  • List/Grid. We optimized the UI and removed clutter in the List and Grid.


The team plans to make it as the default shell and theme when we ship VS11 (you still have the option to use the existing Office-style shell and theme). We also plan to release the extension source code for the new shell and theme to the community at that time.

We’d love to hear your feedback! Please give it a try and help us improve the extension in preparation to shipping VS11!


LightSwitch Team

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  • Now you're talking. This is a great look for a business app. I love the uncluttered look.

    Now to have a play . . .

  • Excellent! Another great resource for the citizen developer toolkit.


  • Nice!!! Thx team.  Waiting for the source code.

  • Nice... this is a much more professional look than the previous themes.

  • Awesome!

  • Looks clean! Thank you!

  • This is nice...

  • simply to better. can make it the standard

  • Thanks for making this new theme and shell available!

    Things I really Like:

    - Place for logo at top

    - Top level navigation menu bar

    - Placement of command bar for screen at bottom; removal of subheadings (Data, Action, etc.)

    - New Grid style

    - New style for validation error decorator (red X circle & box)

    Things I'm not so crazy about:

    - Black toolbar icons (I prefer more color, especially in icons).  Example: the Grid Excel Export icon looks to me like an X to close a screen

    - Screen tabs appear washed out because there is no thin border around them like there is around a Tab layout control that is displayed within the screen

    - Would like to simply hover my mouse over a menu in the menu bar, and see it dropdown the menu without requiring a click

    - Vertical and horizontal scrollbars are too thin (takes extra work to be sure the mouse is positioned accurately)

    - Bottom command bar for screen takes up a lot of space.  Would like ability to collapse/expand from large to small height

    Again, thanks for giving us additional choices out of the box

  • Looks good, one remark please add grid-lines

  • Am getting the " The extension manifest is invalid"

  • New version of LighSwitch need new look such as this shell and theme. Control on the bottom (Save and Refresh) are far away from other commands that are positioned on the top. Looks very nice but need some improvements as previous comments mentioned.

    Excel button are almost unrecognizable.

  • @Kim: This extension is for Visual Studio 11 Beta and cannot be used for LightSwitch 2011 (which integrates into Visual Studio 2010). If you are getting this error on Visual Studio 11 Beta, please let us know.

  • where i can find the application sample "Northwind Traders"

  • where i can find the application sample "Northwind Traders"

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