Step 4: Run and Test the LightSwitch Application

You’ve just created your first LightSwitch application. In this lesson, you’ll run the application and enter some data.

To run your application

  • On the menu bar, choose Debug, Start Debugging.

    This command runs your program in a browser window and displays the ContactLists screen.

    Tip Tip

    You can also press F5 to run your application.

To add a contact

  1. In the ContactLists screen, choose the Add button.

    The ContactList screen opens. You can see fields for entering a name, company, telephone number, and e-mail address.

  2. In the Contact Name text box, enter Howard Snyder.

  3. In the Contact Company text box, enter Great Lakes Food Market.

  4. In the Contact Phone text box, enter 5035557555.

  5. In the Contact Email text box, enter howard@example, and then choose the Save button.

    A dialog box appears to report an invalid e-mail address error. Choose the OK button to dismiss the dialog box.

  6. Add .com to the end of the e-mail address, and then choose the Save button.

    The ContactList screen

    A tile displaying the new contact appears on the Browse screen.

    The Browse screen with the added contact

To view contact details

  1. Choose the tile to open the View screen for the contact.

    The View screen

    Notice that four additional fields have been added: Created By, Created, Modified By, and Modified. These fields provide an audit trail to track who added or changed a record, and when.

  2. Choose the Edit button.

    The ContactList screen that you used to add the contact appears, this time with the data for the current contact.

  3. Choose the Discard button to close the screen, and then choose the Home icon to return to the Browse screen.

To search for a contact

  1. Choose the Search button to display the Search text box at the top of the screen.

  2. In the Search text box, enter 505, and then press Enter.

    The list is empty because there is no matching contact that contains 505.

  3. In the Search text box, change the entry to 503, and then press Enter.

    The list now shows one matching contact, as shown in the following illustration:

    The Contacts list

To view resizing behavior

  1. Add two more contacts with the following values:

    Contact Name

    Contact Company

    Contact Phone

    Contact Email

    Elizabeth Lincoln

    Bottom-Dollar Markets


    Thomas Hardy

    Around the Horn


    Notice how the contacts are displayed in a tiled list format, with the newest entry always on the top left.

    Tiled list layout
  2. Resize the browser window, and notice how the display changes to a single-column list when the window gets narrower. The display automatically adjusts for smaller screens such as phone screens.

    Single-column list
  3. Close the running application by closing the browser window.

  4. On the menu bar, choose File, Save All.

    This saves your project so that you can use it in future lessons.

In this lesson you ran your program to see how it works. You might be surprised that you have a fully functioning application that implements data entry, navigation, validation, search and more, all without writing a single line of code. All the necessary code is built into LightSwitch. This saves you a lot of work.

Of course, the contact management application you've created so far is much simpler than most applications. You'll probably need screens that combine data from multiple sources, or that change what’s displayed based on certain conditions, or that limit access based on the user’s ID. You’ll learn about all those things and more in the remaining lessons.

Although LightSwitch reduces the need to write code for common scenarios, there will be cases where you have to write code. Every business has its own set of rules. For example, you might want to set up your application so that some customers get a discount, or certain purchases are exempt from taxes. As a business application developer, you understand the business rules and can express them in code. You’ll learn more about how to do this in future lessons

Congratulations – you now have a fully functional LightSwitch application. In the following lessons, you’ll learn more about data entities and connecting to data.

Next lesson: Connecting to Data in a LightSwitch Application.