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IoC for Windows Phone: Ninject

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IoC for Windows Phone: Ninject

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As promised in one of my previous posts, I will spend some time explaining the differences between different Inversion of Control (IoC) methods supported by Silverlight for Windows Phone. This post is about Ninject. I will also try to compare several IoC implementations in one of my future articles.

Before making the tutorial, I will mention few facts regarding Ninject in general.

  • Ninject is a famous dependency injector .NET
  • You can download Ninject from their Website
  • You can extend Ninject functions with Extensions
  • Ninject is also supported by Silverlight and Windows Phone 7
  • Ninject supports Constructor, Properties and Method injection
  • Ninject supports 4 injection scopes: Scope, Singleton, Thread, Transient

But let us not waste much time on facts and get directly to our tutorial for Windows Phone.


Download Ninject for Windows Phone from the following website. Create new default Windows Phone project in Visual Studio and add Ninject for Windows Phone references(DLLs) there.

Creating simple Data Providers

Lets assume our product has both test and production environments. Each of them has it’s own implementation inherited from a single interface: ITextDataProvider.

public interface ITextDataProvider
    string GetText();

And the implementations are:

public class ProductionDataProvider : ITextDataProvider
    public string GetText()
        return "production text";
public class TestTextDataProvider : ITextDataProvider
    public string GetText()
        return "test text";

Creating an IoC Container

The container is also pretty simple. It consists of an instance of StandardKernel class, Initialize method and generic Get method, which returns an instance with injected elements based on Type parameter. Initialize method simply binds different implementations depending on current project Build action(Debug, Release) to ITextDataProvider type.

public static class IoCContainter
    private static readonly IKernel Kernel = new StandardKernel();
    public static void Initialize()
        #if DEBUG
    public static T Get<T>()
        return Kernel.Get<T>();

Initializing the IoC Container

Now we need to initialize the IoC container somewhere and probably the most suitable location for that would be App.xaml.cs events: Application_Launching and Application_Activated that run every time the application starts.

// Code to execute when the application is launching (eg, from Start)
// This code will not execute when the application is reactivated
private void Application_Launching(object sender, LaunchingEventArgs e)
// Code to execute when the application is activated (brought to foreground)
// This code will not execute when the application is first launched
private void Application_Activated(object sender, ActivatedEventArgs e)

Creating a ViewModel

Hopefully, you've already been introduced to Model-View-ViewModel(MVVM) pattern that is quite popular in Silverlight world. If not, then there is plenty of information in the internet. For the ViewModel you need to add a property of ITextDataProvider type and add an [Inject] attribute to it. This property will be injected inside Kernel. Also you need to enter a very basic Property that returns a text to be displayed in UI.

public class NinjectSampleViewModel
    public ITextDataProvider TextDataProvider { get; set; }
    public string TextToDisplay
        get { return TextDataProvider.GetText(); }

Creating a View

Final step is to create a View(or Page) to display the results. I have created a default Windows Phone XAML page for that and slightly modified ContentPanel element by adding a TextBlock with Text property Binding inside.

<Grid x:Name="ContentPanel" Grid.Row="1" Margin="12,0,12,0">
    <TextBlock x:Name="tbText" Text="{Binding TextToDisplay}" />

As for the codebehind I have also modified it a little bit with assigning DataContext property with our ViewModel using IoCContainer class.

public NinjectSampleView()
    DataContext = IoCContainter.Get<NinjectSampleViewModel>();


After running the application you will see either “production text” or “test text” displayed depending on your Build Action.

You can find the source code inside EugeneDotnetIoCSamples Project inside EugeneDotnetWPCodeSamples GitHub project:

eugenedotnet github windows phone project


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Published at DZone with permission of Jevgeni Tšaikin. See the original article here.

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