Avalonia FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Avalonia Project

Yes! Avalonia is free to use and open-source under the MIT licence. The code is available on GitHub, and packages can be downloaded from Nuget. We're also a member project of the .NET Foundation and are typically one of the most popular community projects within the Foundation.

Avalonia is maintained by a vibrant community of developers, with contributions from hundreds of individuals. Alongside this, the 'core' team comprises around 20 seasoned developers. Additionally, a commercial entity, AvaloniaUI OÜ, was established by the core team that funds a team of full-time developers dedicated to advancing Avalonia.

Avalonia was initially published to GitHub in 2013, though its original name was Perspect. It's been actively developed for the last decade. You can read a little more about the beginnings of Avalonia in our 10th anniversary celebration blog post.

Avalonia, being open-source, allows anyone to contribute to the project's future. With that said, we understand the critical importance of long-term support when selecting a framework. Avalonia is an enterprise-grade tool built on a decade of open-source development. We've developed comprehensive product roadmaps that extend well into the next decade, underlining our commitment to sustained innovation and support.

Avalonia is funded entirely by AvaloniaUI OÜ, a commercial entity created by the core team of developers. The company provides commercial support agreements, development services and sells licenses to Avalonia XPF, our cross-platform fork of WPF. The company has been profitable since its inception and operates without pressures of external investment, ensuring we can focus on customer needs. You can read about how we're creating a sustainable business model for Avalonia on our blog.

Avalonia Comparisons

What is .NET MAUI? It's an evolution of Xamarin.Forms, enabling developers to create applications using a unified API using the platforms underlying native UI toolkit. Think of it as an abstraction over the operating systems existing UI controls; thus, Xamarin.Forms can only provide the lowest common denominator of UI controls and APIs available on the supported platforms. In contrast, Avalonia is an entire UI toolkit in its own right, responsible for rendering every pixel of the UI. This approach is closer to how Google's Flutter UI framework has been designed and offers numerous benefits, including pixel-perfect apps across every platform and a simplified process of supporting new platforms. Learn more about the benefits on our our blog.

Avalonia is similar to WPF but not 100% compatible and will require work to port your application. We created the following documentation for those seeking to migrate from WPF to Avalonia. We have also created a binary-compatible cross-platform version of WPF, named Avalonia XPF that utilises Avalonia. It allows you to run your WPF app on macOS, Linux, iOS, Android and Browser without modification. We also sell XPF Hybrid licenses, which enable the use of existing WPF controls, such as those developed by Actipro, Telerik, Syncfusion, SciChart and more within your Avalonia application.

Xamarin and Avalonia serve distinct purposes in cross-platform development. Xamarin.iOS, Xamarin.Android, and Xamarin.Mac enables .NET developers to access native iOS, Android, and macOS APIs, requiring separate UI implementation for each platform. Avalonia diverges by forgoing platform-specific UI controls, allowing for complete code reuse across all supported platforms. Avalonia excels when brand consistency and customised design are crucial, as it renders the entire UI, ensuring uniform appearance and functionality on every platform.

Avalonia, unlike Uno, isn't a direct reimplementation of any existing framework but a modern, cross-platform toolkit inspired by WPF. Avalonia focuses on rendering the entire UI independently, akin to Flutter, ensuring consistent, high-quality visuals on all platforms. In contrast, Uno aims to replicate the UWP & WinUI API across platforms, utilising native primitives similar to MAUI. This makes Avalonia ideal for creating a uniform, flexible UI design across every platform. We advise developers to try both technologies when considering Avalonia vs Uno Platform and decide which they prefer.

Avalonia and Blazor cater to different application needs. Avalonia provides native performance and runs efficiently on low-powered devices, offering deep integration with host platforms for superior end-user experiences. Blazor, a web technology, is suited for interactive web applications but can lead to less optimal experiences when adapted for desktop or mobile apps. For projects prioritizing native app performance and seamless system integration, Avalonia is the preferred choice over Blazor.

Avalonia is akin to Flutter for .NET, both using Skia for UI rendering. Key differences include Avalonia's use of .NET and XAML, contrasting with Flutter's Dart language. While Flutter excels in mobile, Avalonia has recently expanded to mobile, offering a more mature desktop experience. For teams skilled in .NET and XAML, Avalonia is likely the better fit.

Avalonia and Qt are cross-platform UI frameworks, each rendering their own UIs. Avalonia, built on .NET, accelerates development and is completely open-source, free from licensing fees. In contrast, Qt, developed using C++, comes with a more complex licensing structure. The shift from Qt to Avalonia is common among companies seeking to leverage the significant productivity gains and cost-effectiveness offered by Avalonia's rapid development environment.

Avalonia XPF

Avalonia XPF is based on WPF shipped with .NET 6.0 SDK. For WPF apps that are using older versions of .NET, we recommend upgrading to NET6, NET7 or NET8

Yes! Using Avalonia XPF, you can run your WPF app on both desktop and embedded Linux. Sign up for a free trial to see it in action.

Yes! Using Avalonia XPF, you can run your WPF app on macOS. Sign up for a free trial to see it in action.

Yes! We're working on bring Avalonia XPF to the browser using WASM. We have internal previews available to demo. Contact us for more information.

Yes, Telerik WPF Controls are supported in the Enterprise tier of Avalonia XPF. Telerik compatibility is not available for the Indie tier.

Yes, DevExpress WPF Controls are supported in the Enterprise tier of Avalonia XPF. DevExpress compatibility is not available for the Indie tier.

Yes, Actipro WPF Controls are supported in the Enterprise tier of Avalonia XPF. Actipro compatibility is not available for the Indie tier.

Yes, Syncfusion WPF Controls are supported in the Enterprise tier of Avalonia XPF. Syncfusion compatibility is not available for the Indie tier.

We are collaborating with the SciChart team to enable SciChart support for Avalonia XPF for Enterprise customers.

Yes. Avalonia XPF for Enterprise has partial support for controls developed with WinForms. However, we do not provide a solution for apps developed entirely with WinForms.

No. Avalonia XPF is not open-source, and its source code is not freely available.

Avalonia XPF is a commercial solution to reduce the costs and risks involved in modernising existing enterprise WPF applications. We recommend that OSS maintainers consider modernising their projects with Avalonia to enable wider adoption and community engagement.

Avalonia will stay free and open-source, continuing to see new features and many updates. Avalonia XPF is a premium product designed for businesses, with the revenue going towards funding the development of our OSS projects, including Avalonia.

Avalonia XPF is licensed per app and enables building for Windows, macOS and Linux. Enterprise licenses are perpetual, with optional upgrades after one year, while Indie licenses are subscription-based. There are no limitations to distribution or the number of developers developing the app.

Many applications can run on Avalonia XPF with zero modifications outside of changing the project SDK. We suggest giving it a try with your own apps by signing up for a free trial.

Yes. Web Assembly and Mobile platforms will be supported in 2024.

Yes. We are happy to create bespoke license agreements for enterprises with several applications.

Avalonia XPF is the perfect choice for those looking to take their existing WPF apps to new platforms with minimal effort. If you're looking to rebuild your app from scratch, then we recommend using Avalonia, our OSS UI toolkit.

Avalonia XPF for Indie Devs

XPF is currently not available for independent developers, and unfortunately, we do not offer a trial version at this time. We are diligently working to make XPF accessible for indie devs soon, but please be aware that it will not include support.

XPF Indie is intended for individuals, but companies with annual revenue under €500,000, fewer than 3 employees, and who have received less than €1m in capital investment are eligible for Indie licenses.

It's important to note that XPF for Indie Devs does not include the Win32 shims necessary for compatibility with most pro controls such as Actipro, Telerik, Syncfusion, etc...To utilise these controls, an Enterprise license is required as it provides the required API shims.

No. The Indie license is intended for individual use. An Indie license cannot be used for client projects. This policy ensures that the significantly discounted Indie license is not utilised to benefit those ineligible for the indie license. If your client is looking to take their WPF application cross-platform, they should acquire the appropriate license.

No. We require a minimum subscription period of twelve months.

After purchasing a license, you will gain access to a private community where you can seek assistance. It's important to note that Avalonia does not offer support for Indie licenses. For those needing direct support, we recommend considering an Enterprise license, which includes comprehensive assistance.

Should you encounter a bug, you are encouraged to report it through our issue tracker, the details of which will be shared with you upon purchase. We are committed to diligently addressing bugs in XPF, although it's important to understand that we cannot offer personalised support for your specific application.

Support

If you need support with guarantees around response times and want to work directly with the core team, then consider subscribing to one of our support agreements. Alternatively, you can engage our vast community of OSS developers by creating issues on GitHub or joining the chat on Telegram.

Yes. However, we recommend you investigate using Avalonia XPF, which enables running WPF applications on macOS and Linux with almost no modifications.

We offer both virtual and onsite training for up to 15 people. Please get in touch with us for more details.

Billing

Please get in touch with your account manager as soon as possible so that we can investigate.

We don't offer student and OSS discounts at this time. If you need support, then you should engage our vast community.

No. We do not accept PayPal payments.

Subscriptions are for a minimum of 12 months. Contact your account manager to discuss cancellation.

Yes. We offer discounts for large support subscriptions. Contact us to discuss your needs.


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