Activating multi selection with checkboxes in a LightSwitch grid with a one-liner


In a business app grid, you often need the ability the select multiple rows and apply an action on the selected rows.



Wouldn’t it be great if we could inject this via following “one-liner”;

 ObservableCollection<Product> SelectedProducts = new ObservableCollection<Product>();

        partial void EditableProductsGrid1_InitializeDataWorkspace(List<IDataService> saveChangesTo)

The line that really matters is the extension method “AddCheckBoxColumnForMultiSelection”. It takes at input an ObservableCollection which will hold the selected items.

As you can see, there is a button called “Do Something With Selection”. We can tweak also the CanExecute behavior as follows:

partial void DoSomethingWithSelection_Execute()
            foreach (var item in SelectedProducts)

partial void DoSomethingWithSelection_CanExecute(ref bool result)
            result = this.Products.SelectedItem != null && SelectedProducts.Count >= 1; ;

This will make sure the button is not clickable if there are no checkboxes checked.

What’s our base infrastructure for doing this?

That’s a bit more involved. But it doesn’t matter, since it’s implemented as an extension method, the whole functionality becomes a … one liner.

using Microsoft.LightSwitch;
using Microsoft.LightSwitch.Client;
using Microsoft.LightSwitch.Presentation;
using System;
using System.Linq;
using System.Collections.ObjectModel;
using System.Net;
using System.Windows;
using System.Windows.Controls;
using System.Windows.Documents;
using System.Windows.Ink;
using System.Windows.Input;
using System.Windows.Markup;
using System.Windows.Media;
using System.Windows.Media.Animation;
using System.Windows.Shapes;
using Microsoft.LightSwitch.Framework.Client;
using Microsoft.LightSwitch.Presentation.Extensions;
using System.Diagnostics;
using Microsoft.LightSwitch.Presentation.Implementation;
using System.Collections.Generic;
namespace LightSwitchApplication
    public static class MultiSelectGridExtensions
        public static void AddCheckBoxColumnForMultiSelection<T>(this IContentItemProxy gridProxy, ObservableCollection<T> selectedItems) where T : class,IEntityObject
            EventHandler<ControlAvailableEventArgs> gridProxy_ControlAvailable = null;

            gridProxy_ControlAvailable = (s1, e1) =>
                DataGrid dataGrid = e1.Control as DataGrid;
                var contentItem = dataGrid.DataContext as IContentItem;
                var visualCollection = (contentItem.Value) as IVisualCollection;
                dataGrid.LoadingRow += new EventHandler<DataGridRowEventArgs>((s2, e2) =>
                    DataGridColumn column = dataGrid.Columns[0];
                    var checkBox = column.GetCellContent(e2.Row) as CheckBox;
                    T currentRowItem = e2.Row.DataContext as T;
                    if (currentRowItem != null)
                        checkBox.IsChecked = selectedItems.Contains(currentRowItem);

                    RoutedEventHandler checkboxClick = null;
                    checkboxClick = (
                        (s3, e3) =>
                            var selectedItem = dataGrid.SelectedItem as T;
                            if (selectedItem == null)
                            if (checkBox.IsChecked ?? false)
                                if (!selectedItems.Contains(selectedItem))
                    checkBox.Click += checkboxClick;

                var col = new DataGridTemplateColumn();
                var xaml =
                    @"<DataTemplate  xmlns="""">
                var dataTemplate = XamlReader.Load(xaml) as DataTemplate;
                col.CellTemplate = dataTemplate;
                dataGrid.Columns.Insert(0, col);

                gridProxy.ControlAvailable -= gridProxy_ControlAvailable;

            gridProxy.ControlAvailable += gridProxy_ControlAvailable;
        private static void TriggerCanExecute(IVisualCollection visualCollection)
            //this will make sure that the CanExecute method is triggered in a potential button for doing something
            //with the selection result.
            //not elegant, but no other option...
            var currentItem = visualCollection.SelectedItem;
            var collection = visualCollection as IEnumerable<IEntityObject>;

            if (!visualCollection.SelectedItem.Equals(collection.Last()))
                visualCollection.SelectedItem = collection.Last();
                visualCollection.SelectedItem = collection.First();
            visualCollection.SelectedItem = currentItem;


Can I download it?

No, you can’t because I stopped uploading samples, as from today. Full stop.

But, … you can directly inject the functionality with NuGet into the silverlight client project. (at least when you use the latest LightSwitch version)

 Install-Package TheLightSwitchToolbox.MultiSelectGridExtension.SilverlightClient


Multi selection in a grid can be simple !