Dynamically discovering assemblies and types on Windows Phone 7

The last few days I’ve been busy porting Balder to other platforms, amongst those; Windows Phone 7 Series. There are some nuances between the different platforms Balder will support, one of these for Windows Phone 7 was that the Load() method does not exist on an AssemblyPart from the deployment object.

Balder has a discover architecture were it discovers different types from the loaded assemblies, in the Silverlight version I could simply go and get all the AssemblyParts and get it as a resource stream and load them to get the actual Assembly instance. Since the Load() method didn’t exist I had to to look elsewhere.
Fortunately, the Assembly class in the Windows Phone 7 version of .net has an overload for the Load() method that takes a string. According to the MSDN documentation it needs to take a fully qualified assemblyname, that turned out to be difficult to acquire. But, it turns out that its sufficient to pass it the short name – this can be derived from the DLL name found in the AssemblyParts property called Source.

From the TypeDiscoverer code in Balder :

[code:c#]
private void CollectTypes()
{
if( null != Deployment.Current )
{
var parts = Deployment.Current.Parts;
foreach (var part in parts)
{
var assemblyName = part.Source.Replace(“.dll”, string.Empty);
var assembly = Assembly.Load(assemblyName);
var types = assembly.GetTypes();
_types.AddRange(types);
}
}
}
[/code]


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