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Snoop for WPF

April 6, 2010 1 comment

A must-have tool for WPF development

Anyone who’s been working with WPF for any length of time will probably already know about this, but for anyone else, one of the tools you have to check out is Snoop, originally posted by Pete Blois and now hosted on CodePlex.

Snoop is basically a debugging aid which allows you to see exactly what’s happening in your running WPF app.  This can be very handy, as XAML can get a bit confusing after more than a couple of buttons, and there are also problems like binding errors (when you miss-spell a property name in your XAML) not making themselves apparent.

Snoop runs against your running application, so if you do anything fancy with dynamic control generation, it will be included.  One of the more useful aspects is the ability to see everything in the visual tree:

Snoop showing the visual tree of my WPF app

Aside from all of the properties of the selected control being shown, you might also notice the selected UserGrid being displayed, which is handy – Snoop also cleverly highlights the selected visual component on your running app:

Snoop highlighting the selected control

You can also use this to show any controls which have binding errors (a common issue in WFP if ur spellin is bad like wat mine is):

Binding Errors highlighted in Snoop

As well as those genuinely useful features, there are a couple of really cool things which are good for showing off – the first is the ability to magnify your app (so you can prove WPF really is using vector graphics!):

Zooming with Snoop

Check out them corners.. Sweet!

And last but not least, watch in amazement as Snoop explodes your app into a magnificent 3D masterpiece!

Mum, my app exploded!

And that’s not just a static image either, you can spin it around and all sorts.  Now come on, who’s not going to be impressed by that?!

So, to summarise, Snoop for WPF – if you haven’t got it, go get it now!

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Categories: WPF Tags: ,