When you have to develop a native UI for Android with Visual Studio, in few minutes you realize that Visual Studio, on this task is light years away from Android Studio, as you would expect :-(.
In this post I describe a little trick that allows you to use Android Studio as a Resource file editor for a Xamarin Android project, with native UI.
Let’s suppose the folder with the Xamarin solution is
c:\xamarin\myapp\. In all likelihood, native Android resources will be found in the
Important: rename all
.axml files to
.xml to allow Android Studio to handle them correctly. For Visual Studio it means losing the integrated graphic editor, which we found to be mediocre…
From Android Studio, click on “Start new android studio project”. Let’s use as Project Location
c:\android\myFakeApp. Choose the API level you prefer, then add an Activity to Mobile > “Basic Activity”, then click to finish.
The resource folder for this project will be:
Build the project from window’s Menu> Build> Make Project
After completing the build by opening the file
app\src\main\res\layout\activity_main.xmlyou will see the graphic editor of android studio working properly.
From windows file explorer rename
Then open a command prompt and type:
Mklink / D c:\android\MyFakeApp\app\src\main\res c:\xamarin\myapp\resources(you are creating a symbolic link…)
The result will be:
Open Android Studio: all Visual Studio project’s resource files will be visible and easiy editable!