Monday, September 01, 2008

Desklighter – carry the light along

Today is a great day for me. At IdentityMine, I’ve been working on a software tool named as ‘Desklighter’ since some time back and now it is released to public as a free beta version through our product website’s labs section at http://blendables.com/labs/Desklighter/Default.aspx.


Desklighter is a windows utility that can convert a Silverlight application into a standalone desktop application. The output from Desklighter is a single executable file that can display the Silverlight content on windows desktops without requiring a hosting server or a browser. Desklighter enables users to carry a Silverlight application off the web to wherever they need it.

Download Desklighter from here and try converting your Silverlight XAP files into windows exes.

The idea of taking the Silverlight application off the web into a portable single file executable opens up a whole new playing field. Now you will be able to carry your favorite Silverlight games from the web in a USB Flash drive to your friends who are not connected to internet. You can now share your exciting ideas materialized in Silverlight without having to worry about the hosting infrastructure. Your flashy Silverlight demo can now be taken to your customer for showcasing during a presentation. You can distribute your stylish e-brochure done in Silverlight in CDs to whomsoever you want. The possibilities are endless.

A Desklight (the EXE created using Desklighter) need to have the Silverlight plug-in (currently Silverlight 2 Beta 2) installed to run on windows desktops. Below is a screen shot of a sample Desklight. You can download more samples from http://sites.google.com/site/silverlightoffline.


Information about a Desklight including the Desklighter version used to create it can be found when executed from a command line with 'info' as the argument.


Another available command line argument is ‘debug’, which displays the Desklight’s server information while the Silverlight content is getting served. Use this if you see some issues while running a Desklight to know what is happening behind the screens.


Read the complete technology story behind Desklighter here.


The name ‘Desklighter’ was chosen to represent Desktop + Silverlight. My colleague Hariprashanth was the one who created all the graphics work for Desklighter. The logo is made up of four ‘D’s (representing Desklighter) with the windows logo colors (representing desktop).  Hari did an excellent work in giving it a stylish look.

I would like to thank all my colleagues here at IdentiyMine for extending their support and providing valuable feedback during the development of Desklighter. The wish list for the next version of Desklighter is growing,  thanks to the innovative ideas from them.

Please let us know what you think about this tool, and what you would like to see in its future versions.

Update - New Version Released: http://ctlabs.blogspot.com/2009/09/desklighter-update-beta-2-with-more.html

7 comments:

  1. Well done Sameer.

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  2. Excellent ........ No words to explain............

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  3. An excellent contribution to the Silverlight community. Nice work!.

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  4. excellent sameer.
    but you can easly add xap object in a static html page (so you don't need a server). Again how do i access database without a web server ?

    thanks,
    ashraf, aluva.

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  5. Thank you all.

    Ashraf, Answers to your question are in our FAQ at http://blendables.com/labs/Desklighter/Default.aspx

    Having an html file with an embedded Silverlight control is another way to take your Silverlight applications offline. But it requires two loose files (html and xap) and you have to manually associate the XAP file in the html code. Desklight holds everything in a single exe file, which is more convenient and portable.

    I didn't fully understand your second question. Can you please elaborate?

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