[IronPython] Developing Silverlight apps using IronPython -- best strategies

Jan-Philip Gehrcke jgehrcke at googlemail.com
Fri Jul 2 20:02:02 CEST 2010

Dear list,

I'm totally new to Silverlight (SL) development and it seems that I can 
benefit from my Python experience by combining SL with IronPython (at 
which I've never looked before, too). In the last days, I crawled the 
web and tried to get an impression of what is the best way to start. 
During this time, some questions came up...

1) What is the cutting-edge way to deploy an SL4/IP2.6 application?
I've basically seen two:
     - The "all-in-xap-way", with the python application and assemblies 
as well as the XAML in the xap file, as it is described in the article 
series at 
     - The "Gestalt way", with some magic inside, allowing to place 
XAML/Python code directly in the HTML
Is the first way out-of-date? Are there more techniques? What are 

2) Are IP based SL applications creating much more traffic than compiled 
(C#...) ones?
It seems to me that the IronPython assemblies either have to be 
delivered within the xap archive or by an external resource, but 
definitely on *each* application load, resulting in ~1 MB traffic per 
load, even for very small apps (okay, the browser cache will definitely 
help here..). If this is true, isn't this a huge disadvantage over 
compiled solutions? Is the browser cache the only help at this point or 
are there better solutions?

3) Which -- in your opinion -- is the best environment for developing an 
IP based SL app?
For the first time, I installed Visual Web Developer..., then Visual 
Studio 2010 shell and the IronPython tools CTP3. I still have to get 
into this.. Which tools do *you* use for developing IP/SL apps?

4) Code compilation: Is it possible to develop using IP, but to only 
deploy compiled binaries?
I've stumbled over Pyc. How to use it within the best approach of 
question (1)? My naive mind sees two possible advantages:
     - Could this be a solution to the traffic problem in question (2), 
i.e. would this do without IP assembly provisioning?
     - For some developers it could be attractive for code obfuscation.
I have the feeling that things are not that easy...

Because things are not very clear to me at the moment, my questions are 
not totally clear, too and leave (too) much room for answers, sorry for 
that. ;-) Anyway, I'm sure that your comments will help me to get a 
better overview, a better technical understanding and to get the feeling 
to start with the right way.

All the best,

Jan-Philip Gehrcke

PS: I already sent an email yesterday, without having subscribed to the 
list before. It did not show up in the archives until now. I think 
(hope) that this old mail is in a black hole now and I did not produce a 

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