How to initially place WPF controls on dynamic fullscreen application

Alright, so I'm trying to figure out the best way to accomplish this for my rather unique case. I have a fullscreen WPF application where controls are added to a Grid dynamically and the user is given the option to freely move/resize them. The controls can be individually moved or resized anywhere on the parent Grid but I have prevented them from overlapping via their MouseMove events. They also cannot be moved outside of their container. Since the app will be running on machines with different monitor sizes, I need to take that into consideration when making the original layout. I have an initial layout that I would like to use, but it would seem that I'm out of options:

I first tried using rows and columns just to (initially) place the controls that are added. This method places them correctly but becomes a problem when I need to move or resize the elements because the control is already assigned to a particular row and column. I could try to use this method and then remove any rows/columns after placing the controls, but I don't think that would work well.

I've also considered a Viewbox, but that's not practical in my case for fairly obvious reasons (as it merely resizes the controls to fit the screen). I'd prefer not to use this because I would only need it to standardize my initial layout. That's it. I also don't want to mess up any text that will be displayed on the window.

So yeah, this is more of a "best practice" question because any solution I can think of would not look very professional or elegant. Feel free to ask any questions if you need clarification.

Edit: As an additional note, I'd prefer to stick with a Grid as opposed to a Canvas as my container.

1 answer

  • answered 2018-01-11 20:25 Eric

    I've developed a number of kiosk/interactive applications using WPF. If you are trying to show the element transitions (while moving), then it might be best to use a parent Canvas and bind the Canvas.Left and Canvas.Top properties. You can mimic the grid alignment, using a Canvas, if you put in place mechanisms (e.g. Manipulation/Mouse events, converters) to make sure that the Canvas attached properties adjust to the row/column offsets.

    It is not uncommon at all to use the Viewbox to mitigate display differences (and your use case is not "rather unique"). You set the Viewbox to a target resolution (e.g. 1920x1080) and allow the control to fill the available space. The other alternative would be to dynamically apply a content template based on the application window size/ratio.