The Visual FoxPro Roadshow 2010

Rainer Becker

Dear Subscribers,

thank you for your ongoing support of FoxRockX! And here comes our gift to you for supporting us: You are herewith invited to a free one-day workhop right after the South West DevCon in October! Each subscriber of FoxRockX as well as each attendee of the South West DevCon can attend our Post-DevCon Workshop for free! Just bring your copy of this issue of FoxRockX or your SWFox attendee badge with you for a full day loaded with stateof- the-art sessions. Or you can attend for US$ 129 cash payment upon arrival (no credit cards accepted).

So what is this about? Over here in Europe, Microsoft asked us a long time ago to move to Access. Years later they asked us to move to Visual Studio (do you still remember Visual InterDev?). And some years later still they asked us to move to Visual Studio. NET. And do you know what - we never moved! There is a saying in Europe which goes, moving places three times is like having your house burnt down once. Well, nobody can afford a house to Continues on Page 7 burn down. At least if the insurance company will certainly refuse to pay, and everything of value, the code, is lost.

But now Microsoft has released something new, and this time they plainly forgot to ask us yet again to move! Maybe they gave up upon us. It would not really be the first time we feel this way. But we did not give up. And so we found a new playing-field for Visual FoxPro developers to make them and all their customers happy again! We have been waiting for such a long time but finally it looks like it is available: The new development strategy for Microsoft Visual FoxPro developers!

Yes, you guessed right, we will continue to use Visual FoxPro and re-use as much code and parts as possible. But, sorry to say this, the front-end has to change. We will use Silverlight 4.0 instead, with an XAML user interface as a front-end. This way we are able to deploy our FoxPro applications to any browser on any operating system, or as a desktop/network application under Windows while maintaining the form design as well as the report design (SCX/FRX converted to XAML including data binding), the user interface logic in native VFP code, the background business logic in native VFP code via COM servers, database containers and tables or client/server access within the programming logic of our beloved Visual FoxPro.

It is a hybrid solution we want to present to you which gives you all the buzzwords you need nowadays. Our first presentation recently at the CeBIT fair in Hannover (the world's largest IT fair) was so successful that we decided to run a roadshow in six cities in Germany, Austria, Switzerland in June and to extend this roadshow to the US as a free bonus track of the SouthWest Devcon on Monday, October 18th, 2010. Subscribe to FoxRockX or register for SW-Fox to obtain a free day covering the following topics:

9 am - 10.45 am: Silverlight Business Application

This session provides a brief introduction into Silverlight and Visual Studio 2010. What is Silverlight? What can we do with it? Why do we need it? During this session we will develop a Silverlight business application without any programming. A data model and a domain service will be generated. A Silverlight client will be created with base functionality. Then, on the server's side a VFP COM server will be used to access VFP and SQL Server databases. This VFP COM server will also contain business logic. The application will run over the Internet or in Intranets.

11.15 am - 1 pm: Migration of VFP Applications to Silverlight

How can existing VFP controls or even forms be redesigned in Silverlight? Which properties are available in Silverlight? How do Silverlight controls behave? We will show ways how to create Silverlight user interfaces that are similar to existing VFP user interfaces, including MDI forms.

2 pm - 3.45 pm: VFX - Silverlight Wizard

The next version of our framework Visual Extend will come with a wizard which allows the migration of forms and reports from existing VFX and VFP applications to Silverlight. Code parts will be moved to a VFP COM server. A prepared VFX application will be migrated to Silverlight. At the end, attendees will have a running Silverlight application which accesses a database simultaneously with a VFX application.

4.15 pm - 6 pm: More Features and Silverlight Desktop Applications

The attendees will create a Silverlight desktop application that communicates with a VFP COM server. The COM server will implement the data access as well as the business logic. We are going to discuss the settings required to enable a Silverlight application to run out of the browser. A new thing in Silverlight 4 is the print engine. The participants create an XAML report which runs in a Silverlight application. Enjoy a full day of presentations for free, and see how Visual FoxPro applications can be moved forward to present a new compelling user interface based on the topmost technology of Microsoft. For details of the main conference, see For a free registration for the roadshow day please visit Of course we are going to treat Silverlight in FoxRockX articles. It is the hottest topic we have seen for a long time.