WPF TextBox

This article demonstrates how to create and use a TextBox control in WPF using XAML and C#.

Creating a TextBox

The TextBox element represents a WPF TextBox control in XAML.  


The Width and Height attributes of the TextBox element represent the width and the height of a TextBox. The Text property of the TextBox element sets the content of a TextBox. The Name attribute represents the name of the control, which is a unique identifier of a control.  

The code snippet in Listing 1 creates a TextBox control and sets the name, height, width, and content of a TextBox control.  

<TextBox Name="TextBox1" Height="30" Width="200" |
        Text="Hello! I am a TextBox.">

Listing 1

The output looks like Figure 1.


Figure 1

As you can see from Figure 1, by default the TextBox is place in the center of the page. We can place a TextBox control where we want by using the Margin, VerticalAlignment and HorizontalAlignment attributes that sets the margin, vertical alignment, and horizontal alignment of a control.

The code snippet in Listing 2 sets the position of the TextBox control in the left top corner of the page.

<TextBox Name="TextBox1" Height="30" Width="200" 
        Text="Hello! I am a TextBox." 
        Margin="10,10,0,0" VerticalAlignment="Top"

Listing 2

Formatting a TextBox

The BorderBrush property of the TextBox sets a brush to draw the border of a TextBox. You may use any brush to fill the border. The code snippet in Listing 3 uses a linear gradient brush to draw the border with a combination of red and blue color.

    <LinearGradientBrush StartPoint="0,0" EndPoint="1,1" >
        <GradientStop Color="Blue" Offset="0" />
        <GradientStop Color="Red" Offset="1.0" />

Listing 3

The Background and Foreground properties of the TextBox set the background and foreground colors of a TextBox. You may use any brush to fill the border. The following code snippet uses linear gradient brushes to draw the background and foreground of a TextBox.  

    <LinearGradientBrush StartPoint="0,0" EndPoint="1,1" >
        <GradientStop Color="Blue" Offset="0.1" />
        <GradientStop Color="Orange" Offset="0.25" />       

        <GradientStop Color="Green" Offset="0.75" />
        <GradientStop Color="Red" Offset="1.0" />

    <LinearGradientBrush StartPoint="0,0" EndPoint="1,1" >                 

        <GradientStop Color="Orange" Offset="0.25" />
        <GradientStop Color="White" Offset="1.0" />                  


The new TextBox looks like Figure 2.


Figure 2

 Setting Image as Background of a TextBox

To set an image as background of a TextBox, we can set an image as the Background of the TextBox. The code snippet in Listing 4 sets the background of a TextBox to an image. 

    <ImageBrush ImageSource="dock.jpg" />

Listing 4

The new output looks like Figure 3.


Figure 3

Creating a TextBox Dynamically

The code listed in Listing 5 creates a TextBox control programmatically. First, it creates a TextBox object and sets its width, height, contents, background and foreground and later the TextBox is added to the LayoutRoot.

private void CreateATextBox()|

    TextBox txtb= new TextBox();
    txtb.Height = 50;
    txtb.Width = 200;
    txtb.Text = "Text Box content";
    txtb.Background = new SolidColorBrush(Colors.Orange);
    txtb.Foreground = new SolidColorBrush(Colors.Black);

Listing 5

Setting Fonts of TextBox Contents

The FontSize, FontFamily, FontWeight, FontStyle, and FontStretch properties are used to set the font size, family, weight, style and stretch to the text of a TextBox. The code snippet in Listing 6 sets the font properties of a TextBox.

FontSize="14" FontFamily="Verdana" FontWeight="Bold"

Listing 6

The new output looks like Figure 4.


Figure 4

The FontSource property allows loading custom fonts dynamically. The following code snippet sets the FontSource property.

Uri fontUri = new Uri("SomeFont.ttf", UriKind.Relative);
StreamResourceInfo MySRI = Application.GetResourceStream(fontUri);
TextBox1.FontSource = new FontSource(MySRI.Stream); 

Non Editable TextBox

The IsReadOnly property of the TextBox sets the text box read only. By default, it is false.


Restricting Text Size of a TextBox

The MaxLength property of the TextBox sets the number of characters allowed to input in a text box.


Scrolling, Alignment, and Wrapping 

The HorizontalScrollBarVisibility and VerticalScrollBarVisibility properties are used to set horizontal and vertical scroll bars of a TextBox, which is of type ScrollBarVisibility enumeration. The ScrollBarVisibility enumeration has four values – Disabled, Auto, Hidden, and Visible. The following code snippet sets the horizontal and vertical scroll bars visible in a TextBox.


The TextWrapping property sets the wrap of no warp text. The following code snippet sets the wrapping text option.


The TextAlignment property sets the text alignment in a TextBox, which is of type TextAlignment enumeration. A text can be aligned left, center, or right. 


The AcceptReturn property sets if the return is accepted in a TextBox or not.   


Listing 7 shows all these properties in a complete sample.

<TextBox Name="TextBox2" Margin="10,10,50,0
         Width="300" Height="150"
         AcceptsReturn="True" >         


Listing 7


In this article, I discussed how we can create and format a TextBox control in WPF and C#.  After that we saw how to create a TextBox control dynamically. Then we saw how to set various properties of a TextBox such as making it non editable, restrict the size of text, and set the foreground an d background of the selected text.


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