Was Sharepoint 2010 written using Silverlight? Why does it work on IOS?

Posted on 2012-08-27
Last Modified: 2012-08-27
Sharepoint 2010 looks fantastic.  Even the default out-of-the-box pop-up dialogbox forms (like creating  or editing data etc...)  look awesome and I assumed this was written in XAML/ Silverlight.  

I know that the custom Silverlight XAP controls I have written can be displayed in the Sharepoint's Silverlight web part control but that web part requires Silverlight itself to be installed locally on the client which means IOS devices aren't supported and IOS can not display silverlight controls.  Yet  - Sharepoint's dialogbox's do show up perfectly in IOS.

My question is are those dialogbox's in Sharepoint 2010 written in XAML / Silverlight and if so, how is are they able to render them in IOS without Silverlight being installed?
Question by:vamail2
    LVL 44

    Expert Comment

    by:Rainer Jeschor
    NO - the dialog "framework" in SharePoint 2010 is based on simply pure JavaScript utilizing iframes.
    Only in some areas - e.g. Chart Web Part in BI, Access Services, Site Creation - Silverlight controls are used.
    Hence IOS should work if you change the browser capabilities file on the server - otherwise SharePoint will redirect to the "mobile" view.


    Author Comment


    Thank you for your response.   I just need to ask you to clarify the part where you wrote "Hence IOS should work if you change the browser capabilities file on the server".

    1.  I am not sure what change to which file you mean? You mean the web.config for sharepoint or my site?

    2. Does that mean if I make whatever that change is that IOS users would be able to view   "Chart Web Part in BI, Access Services, Site Creation - Silverlight controls are used." that you mentioned?   If yes - does that mean IOS users would be able to somehow view my silverlight controls?

    I did find this MS article on what iPad's can view but it doesn't make the distinction between silverlight generated or not.  Am I confusing this also with what you were telling me?    

    LVL 44

    Accepted Solution


    1. Browser settings
    The file compat.browser (which is in a sub folder of the IIS SharePoint site) will control, how the site will be rendered. E.g. for an iPhone the mobile view will be generated (which will then use different controls and elements than the normal browser view controls).
    I was wrong - iPad will be rendered the "normal" browser way out-of-the-box - so no change here (despite you want to have another experience on iPhones).

    2. Silverlight areas
    Some areas of SharePoint will be rendered in a different way - e.g. creating sites or lists will not use the new Silverlight control but the "old" way aspx page.
    In general the has been much improvement with SharePoint December Cumulative Update and IOS 5 (more supported tags in Safari) in regards to the BI area.
    General browser support:

    AFAIK especially the Performance Point parts like strategy map and decompostion trees and the Visio web part use Silverlight.


    Author Closing Comment

    Thank you so much for that in-depth answer.  I am grateful.

    Featured Post

    Maximize Your Threat Intelligence Reporting

    Reporting is one of the most important and least talked about aspects of a world-class threat intelligence program. Here’s how to do it right.

    Join & Write a Comment

    Problem Hi all,    While many today have fast Internet connection, there are many still who do not, or are connecting through devices with a slower connect, so light web pages and fast load times are still popular.    If your ASP.NET page …
    Exception Handling is in the core of any application that is able to dignify its name. In this article, I'll guide you through the process of writing a DRY (Don't Repeat Yourself) Exception Handling mechanism, using Aspect Oriented Programming.
    Get a first impression of how PRTG looks and learn how it works.   This video is a short introduction to PRTG, as an initial overview or as a quick start for new PRTG users.
    Here's a very brief overview of the methods PRTG Network Monitor ( offers for monitoring bandwidth, to help you decide which methods you´d like to investigate in more detail.  The methods are covered in more detail in o…

    754 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    14 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now