Troubleshooting Xamarin and .NET MAUI: iOS Deployment Issues after XCode Upgrade

Are you facing deployment issues with your Xamarin or .NET MAUI iOS app after upgrading XCode? You’re not alone. Many developers encounter the frustrating “/usr/bin/xcrun exited with code 1” error message, coupled with the “actool exited with code 1” and an error about failing to locate a simulator runtime. In this blog post, we’ll delve into this problem and provide you with a solution to get your iOS app deployment back on track.

Understanding the Problem

After upgrading XCode to a newer version, you may notice that you can’t deploy your Xamarin or .NET MAUI iOS app to physical iOS devices, and the simulator targets are mysteriously missing from the drop-down menu where you select deployment targets. This issue can be perplexing and hinder your development workflow.

The error message you encounter typically looks something like this:

Resolution

To tackle this deployment challenge, you should delve into your XCode configuration and confirm that the iOS platform is both accessible and correctly installed on your development machine. Follow these steps:

  1. Launch XCode on your Mac.
  2. Click on “XCode” in the top menu bar and choose “Preferences.” This will open the XCode preferences window.
  3. Within the preferences window, select the “Platforms” section. Here, you’ll find the key settings related to platform configuration.
  4. After you’ve confirmed that all the required iOS components are installed, close and restart Visual Studio (or your preferred development environment).
This content has 8 months. Some of the information in this post may be out of date or no longer work. Please, read this page keeping its age in your mind.

.NET MAUI: Enhancing apps with Microsoft App Center: Analytics and Diagnostics

As the world of software development continues to evolve, building robust and responsive applications has become crucial. Microsoft’s App Center offers a comprehensive suite of tools designed to streamline the development process and elevate user experiences. In this extended blog post, we’ll dive into integrating Microsoft App Center into .NET MAUI projects, specifically focusing on how Analytics and Diagnostics can provide invaluable insights for developers and project owners.

What is Microsoft App Center?

Microsoft App Center is a unified platform that empowers developers to build, test, distribute, and monitor mobile and desktop applications. By offering a wide range of tools and services, App Center enhances collaboration, accelerates development, and ensures the quality and performance of applications.

Analytics and Diagnostics: Why Are They Important?

  1. Analytics: App Center Analytics provides comprehensive insights into user behavior, enabling developers and project owners to make data-driven decisions. By tracking user interactions, app usage patterns, and feature engagement, you can understand how users are interacting with your application. This data is invaluable for optimizing user experiences, improving user flows, and tailoring your app’s functionalities to better meet user needs.
  2. Diagnostics: Diagnosing and resolving issues quickly is essential for maintaining a positive user experience. App Center Diagnostics helps you monitor crashes and exceptions in real-time, allowing you to identify and address problems as they arise. This feature significantly reduces downtime and enhances app stability, thereby improving user satisfaction and retention.

Integrating Microsoft App Center into .NET MAUI Projects:

Integrating Microsoft App Center into your .NET MAUI projects is a straightforward process. The steps closely resemble the integration with Xamarin.Forms.

Set Up App Center

  1. Create an account on App Center if you don’t have one already.
  2. Follow steps on this link to create new projects within the AppCenter portal: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/appcenter/sdk/getting-started/xamarin.

Add SDK to Your Project

Install the Microsoft.AppCenter and Microsoft.AppCenter.Analytics packages via NuGet.

Create a Crash Analytics Service

Create an interface and an implementation for the crash analytics features (Analytics and Diagnostics):

public interface ICrashAnalyticsService
{
    void TrackEvent(string eventName, Dictionary<string, string>? properties = null);
    void TrackError(Exception exception, Dictionary<string, string>? properties = null);
}

public class CrashAnalyticsService : ICrashAnalyticsService
{
    public void TrackEvent(string eventName, Dictionary<string, string>? properties = null)
    {
        Analytics.TrackEvent(eventName, properties);
    }

    public void TrackError(Exception exception, Dictionary<string, string>? properties = null)
    {
        Crashes.TrackError(exception, properties);
    }
}

Initialization and dependency registration

In your MauiProgram.cs file, register the ICrashAnalyticsService in the ServiceProvider:

using Microsoft.Maui.Controls.Hosting;
using Microsoft.Extensions.DependencyInjection;
using YourNamespace.Services; // Import the namespace for your service implementation

public static MauiApp CreateMauiAppBuilder()
{
    var builder = MauiApp.CreateBuilder();
    // Other configurations
    .....
    builder.Services.AddTransient<ICrashAnalyticsService, CrashAnalyticsService>();

    AppCenter.Start("YOUR_APP_CENTER_SECRET",
        typeof(Analytics), typeof(Crashes));

    return builder.Build();
}

Inject and Use Crash Analytics Service:

In your ViewModel or code-behind (or wherever you want to use analytics or crash reporting), inject the ICrashAnalyticsService and use it to track events and errors:

using Microsoft.Maui.Controls;
using YourNamespace.Services; // Import the namespace for the service

public class MainViewModel : BindableObject
{
    private readonly ICrashAnalyticsService _crashAnalyticsService;

    public MainViewModel(ICrashAnalyticsService crashAnalyticsService)
    {
        _crashAnalyticsService = crashAnalyticsService;
    }

    public void ImportantButtonClick()
    {
        // Track an analytics event
        var properties = new Dictionary<string, string>
        {
            { "UserID", "123" },
            { "Action", "ButtonClick" }
        };
        _crashAnalyticsService.TrackEvent("ImportantButtonClick", properties);

        // Simulate an exception and track the error
        try
        {
            // Simulate an error
            throw new Exception("Simulated error");
        }
        catch (Exception ex)
        {
            _crashAnalyticsService.TrackError(ex, properties);
        }
    }
}

Conclusion:

Microsoft App Center is a powerful ally for .NET MAUI developers, offering robust tools for application development, testing, distribution, and monitoring. Analytics and Diagnostics components provide insights that empower developers and project owners to make informed decisions, optimize user experiences, and ensure application stability. By integrating App Center into your .NET MAUI projects, you’re embracing a proactive approach to delivering high-quality, user-centric applications.

Note: Although .NET MAUI support isn’t available on App Center at the time of writing, it’s important to stay informed about updates. The .NET MAUI community is actively evolving, and it’s possible that support for .NET MAUI on App Center will be available in the near future. This would streamline the integration process and provide a dedicated platform for managing your .NET MAUI applications.

This content has 10 months. Some of the information in this post may be out of date or no longer work. Please, read this page keeping its age in your mind.

.NET MAUI : Creating Customized Popups with Mopups


Popups are a powerful UI element to engage users with important information, actions, or requests. While the .NET MAUI CommunityToolkit offers simple popup functionality, sometimes you may need more customization and control over your popups. In this tutorial, we will explore how to implement custom popups using the Mopups library in .NET MAUI.

Prerequisites:

  • A basic understanding of XAML and C#.

Install NuGet Package

Open your .NET MAUI project and install the “Mopups” NuGet package by LuckyDucko.

Initialize Mopups


In your MauiProgram.cs file, within the CreateMauiAppBuilder method, call .ConfigureMopups() on the host builder to initialize the Mopups library:

using Mopups;
// ...

public static MauiApp CreateMauiAppBuilder()
{
    var builder = MauiApp.CreateBuilder();
    // Other configurations
    builder.ConfigureMopups();
    return builder.Build();
}

Create a Custom PopupPage


Add a new ContentPage to your project and modify the base class of the XAML file to PopupPage. Add the necessary namespace declaration for the Mopups.Pages namespace:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<pages:PopupPage xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/dotnet/2021/maui"
                  xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2009/xaml"
                  xmlns:pages="clr-namespace:Mopups.Pages;assembly=Mopups"
                  x:Class="YourNamespace.CustomPopupPage">
    <!-- Your custom popup content here -->
</pages:PopupPage>

Create and Display the Popup


In your code-behind or ViewModel, you can use the MopupService to create and display your custom popup:

using Mopups.Services;
// ...

private async Task ShowCustomPopupAsync()
{
    await MopupService.Instance.PushAsync(new CustomPopupPage());
}

Tip: Adding Background Overlay


To create a partially opaque background that covers the content underneath the popup, you can set the BackgroundColor property of your PopupPage to a HEX color with transparency, like “#99272727”:

<pages:PopupPage xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/dotnet/2021/maui"
                  xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2009/xaml"
                  xmlns:pages="clr-namespace:Mopups.Pages;assembly=Mopups"
                  x:Class="YourNamespace.CustomPopupPage"
                  BackgroundColor="#99272727">
    <!-- Your custom popup content here -->
</pages:PopupPage>

Conclusion


The Mopups library offers a robust solution for creating customized popups in .NET MAUI applications. With the ability to fully customize the layout and presentation of your popups, Mopups provides the flexibility needed to create engaging user experiences. By following this tutorial, you can easily integrate Mopups into your .NET MAUI projects and leverage its features to create unique and interactive popups for your users.

This content has 10 months. Some of the information in this post may be out of date or no longer work. Please, read this page keeping its age in your mind.

.NET MAUI: iOS ListView disappearing cells

In this article, we will delve into a persistent .NET MAUI issue affecting ListViews on the iOS platform in .NET 7 builds. While the .NET 8 preview has addressed this issue, developers seeking a solution can employ the BindableLayout as a temporary workaround. We’ll also explore the concept of BindableLayout and touch on the CachingStrategy within ListViews.

The Problem: Disappearing Cells in ListViews on iOS

The issue at hand revolves around the behavior of ListViews on the iOS platform in .NET 7 builds. As users scroll through the list elements, the ListView cells mysteriously disappear, causing a jarring experience. While the .NET 8 preview has resolved this vexing problem, the official release is still pending, leaving developers seeking immediate solutions.

The Workaround: BindableLayout within ScrollView

A viable workaround to mitigate the disappearing cell issue involves utilizing the BindableLayout within a ScrollView. The BindableLayout.ItemSource property can be harnessed to mimic the ListView’s behavior. However, it’s crucial to acknowledge that this solution might not deliver the same performance as a native ListView.

Example Code

Here’s how you can implement the BindableLayout workaround:

<ScrollView>
    <StackLayout>
        <BindableLayout.ItemsSource>
            <x:Array Type="{x:Type local:ItemModel}">
                <local:ItemModel Name="Item 1" />
                <local:ItemModel Name="Item 2" />
                <local:ItemModel Name="Item 3" />
                <!-- Add more items here -->
            </x:Array>
        </BindableLayout.ItemsSource>
        <BindableLayout.ItemTemplate>
            <DataTemplate>
                <Label Text="{Binding Name}" />
            </DataTemplate>
        </BindableLayout.ItemTemplate>
    </StackLayout>
</ScrollView>

BindableLayout: A Glimpse

BindableLayout is a versatile feature within the .NET MAUI framework that allows developers to easily bind collections to layout controls. It’s an excellent alternative when dealing with scenarios where a native ListView isn’t performing optimally or in cases like the aforementioned issue. BindableLayout empowers developers to achieve the desired UI layout while maintaining data synchronization.

Use BindableLayout when you want more control over the layout of your items, need to create a dynamic UI with varying layouts, and don’t necessarily require built-in performance optimizations.

Understanding CachingStrategy within ListViews

ListViews in .NET MAUI come with a property known as CachingStrategy. This property determines how the ListView should cache its visual elements, significantly influencing performance. There are three options:

  1. RecycleElement: This strategy reuses existing cells, enhancing memory usage and rendering speed. However, it might pose issues when complex cell layouts are used.
  2. RetainElement: This strategy preserves cells for the duration of the ListView’s existence. While memory consumption can be higher, it can be useful for more intricate cell layouts.
  3. None: In this strategy, no caching is employed, causing cells to be created and destroyed frequently. While it minimizes memory usage, it can have an adverse impact on performance.

Conclusion

While the .NET MAUI framework continues to evolve, issues like the disappearing ListView cells on iOS in .NET 7 builds are inevitable. Developers eagerly anticipate the benefits that .NET 8 will bring, including the resolution of this particular problem. In the interim, the BindableLayout within a ScrollView offers a workaround that replicates the ListView’s behavior, albeit with potential performance differences. By understanding concepts like BindableLayout and the CachingStrategy within ListViews, developers can navigate these challenges while continuing to create engaging and efficient cross-platform applications. Stay tuned for the official .NET 8 release and more innovations that will undoubtedly enhance the .NET MAUI experience.

https://github.com/dotnet/maui/issues/11640

This content has 10 months. Some of the information in this post may be out of date or no longer work. Please, read this page keeping its age in your mind.

.NET MAUI: Label issue, Overflowing Texts in StackLayouts

In this blog post, we will explore a known issue affecting the Label UserControl in .NET MAUI when used within a StackLayout. We will explain how this problem manifests and the temporary solution proposed by the Microsoft team.

The Issue


The problem arises when using the Label UserControl inside a StackLayout UserControl. Despite setting the parent UserControl’s width and height, the Label does not respect these dimensions and overflows its content. This can lead to visual glitches and unintended behavior in the application’s user interface.

Reproducing the Issue


To replicate the issue, follow these steps:

  1. Add a Grid with a column width of *
  2. Add a StackLayout as the only child of the Grid
  3. Add a background color to the StackLayout for better visibility of the issue
  4. Add a Label with content that exceeds the available width and can’t fit on a single line.

For example

<Grid>
    <Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
        <ColumnDefinition Width="*" />
    </Grid.ColumnDefinitions>

    <StackLayout BackgroundColor="LightGray">
        <Label Text="This is a very long text that will overflow the StackLayout width." />
    </StackLayout>
</Grid>

The Proposed Solution


While the Microsoft team is actively working on addressing this issue, a temporary solution is available to mitigate the problem. By setting the IsClippedToBounds parameter of the StackLayout to true, we can prevent the Label from overflowing its parent’s boundaries.

What does IsClippedToBounds do?


IsClippedToBounds is a property of the StackLayout that determines whether its children should be clipped to fit within the bounds of the parent container. When this property is set to true, any content that extends beyond the StackLayout’s boundaries will be clipped and hidden, ensuring that it does not visually overflow the container.

A tiny disadvantage

While setting the IsClippedToBounds property can help mitigate the issue of overflowing content in a StackLayout, it comes with its own set of limitations. One significant drawback is that it restricts the control from growing both horizontally and vertically within the parent container.

Implementation of the Temporary Solution


To apply the temporary solution to our issue, we simply need to add the IsClippedToBounds="True" attribute to the StackLayout:

<Grid>
    <Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
        <ColumnDefinition Width="*" />
    </Grid.ColumnDefinitions>

    <StackLayout BackgroundColor="LightGray" IsClippedToBounds="True">
        <Label Text="This is a very long text that will overflow the StackLayout width." />
    </StackLayout>
</Grid>

Conclusion


The .NET MAUI Label UserControl issue affecting StackLayout is an acknowledged problem by the Microsoft team. While a permanent fix is being developed, we can use the IsClippedToBounds property as a temporary solution to prevent the Label from overflowing its parent’s boundaries. Keep an eye on future updates from Microsoft to stay informed about the resolution of this issue and any other improvements they bring to the .NET MAUI framework. Happy coding!

https://github.com/dotnet/maui/issues/12895

This content has 10 months. Some of the information in this post may be out of date or no longer work. Please, read this page keeping its age in your mind.