Data binding to SelectedItem in a WPF Treeview

How can I retrieve the item that is selected in a WPF-treeview? I want to do this in XAML, because I want to bind it.

You might think that it is SelectedItem but apparently that does not exist is readonly and therefore unusable.

This is what I want to do:

<TreeView ItemsSource="{Binding Path=Model.Clusters}" 
            ItemTemplate="{StaticResource ClusterTemplate}"
            SelectedItem="{Binding Path=Model.SelectedCluster}" />

I want to bind the SelectedItem to a property on my Model.

But this gives me the error:

'SelectedItem' property is read-only and cannot be set from markup.

Edit: Ok, this is the way that I solved this:

<TreeView
          ItemsSource="{Binding Path=Model.Clusters}" 
          ItemTemplate="{StaticResource HoofdCLusterTemplate}"
          SelectedItemChanged="TreeView_OnSelectedItemChanged" />

and in the codebehindfile of my xaml:

private void TreeView_OnSelectedItemChanged(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<object> e)
{
    Model.SelectedCluster = (Cluster)e.NewValue;
}

Answers


I realise this has already had an answer accepted, but I put this together to solve the problem. It uses a similar idea to Delta's solution, but without the need to subclass the TreeView:

public class BindableSelectedItemBehavior : Behavior<TreeView>
{
    #region SelectedItem Property

    public object SelectedItem
    {
        get { return (object)GetValue(SelectedItemProperty); }
        set { SetValue(SelectedItemProperty, value); }
    }

    public static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItemProperty =
        DependencyProperty.Register("SelectedItem", typeof(object), typeof(BindableSelectedItemBehavior), new UIPropertyMetadata(null, OnSelectedItemChanged));

    private static void OnSelectedItemChanged(DependencyObject sender, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        var item = e.NewValue as TreeViewItem;
        if (item != null)
        {
            item.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, true);
        }
    }

    #endregion

    protected override void OnAttached()
    {
        base.OnAttached();

        this.AssociatedObject.SelectedItemChanged += OnTreeViewSelectedItemChanged;
    }

    protected override void OnDetaching()
    {
        base.OnDetaching();

        if (this.AssociatedObject != null)
        {
            this.AssociatedObject.SelectedItemChanged -= OnTreeViewSelectedItemChanged;
        }
    }

    private void OnTreeViewSelectedItemChanged(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<object> e)
    {
        this.SelectedItem = e.NewValue;
    }
}

You can then use this in your XAML as:

<TreeView>
    <e:Interaction.Behaviors>
        <behaviours:BindableSelectedItemBehavior SelectedItem="{Binding SelectedItem, Mode=TwoWay}" />
    </e:Interaction.Behaviors>
</TreeView>

Hopefully it will help someone!


This property exists : TreeView.SelectedItem

But it is readonly, so you cannot assign it through a binding, only retrieve it


Well, I found a solution. It moves the mess, so that MVVM works.

First add this class:

public class ExtendedTreeView : TreeView
{
    public ExtendedTreeView()
        : base()
    {
        this.SelectedItemChanged += new RoutedPropertyChangedEventHandler<object>(___ICH);
    }

    void ___ICH(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<object> e)
    {
        if (SelectedItem != null)
        {
            SetValue(SelectedItem_Property, SelectedItem);
        }
    }

    public object SelectedItem_
    {
        get { return (object)GetValue(SelectedItem_Property); }
        set { SetValue(SelectedItem_Property, value); }
    }
    public static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItem_Property = DependencyProperty.Register("SelectedItem_", typeof(object), typeof(ExtendedTreeView), new UIPropertyMetadata(null));
}

and add this to your xaml:

 <local:ExtendedTreeView ItemsSource="{Binding Items}" SelectedItem_="{Binding Item, Mode=TwoWay}">
 .....
 </local:ExtendedTreeView>

Answer with attached properties and no external dependencies, should the need ever arise!

You can create an attached property that is bindable and has a getter and setter:

public class TreeViewHelper
{
    private static Dictionary<DependencyObject, TreeViewSelectedItemBehavior> behaviors = new Dictionary<DependencyObject, TreeViewSelectedItemBehavior>();

    public static object GetSelectedItem(DependencyObject obj)
    {
        return (object)obj.GetValue(SelectedItemProperty);
    }

    public static void SetSelectedItem(DependencyObject obj, object value)
    {
        obj.SetValue(SelectedItemProperty, value);
    }

    // Using a DependencyProperty as the backing store for SelectedItem.  This enables animation, styling, binding, etc...
    public static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItemProperty =
        DependencyProperty.RegisterAttached("SelectedItem", typeof(object), typeof(TreeViewHelper), new UIPropertyMetadata(null, SelectedItemChanged));

    private static void SelectedItemChanged(DependencyObject obj, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        if (!(obj is TreeView))
            return;

        if (!behaviors.ContainsKey(obj))
            behaviors.Add(obj, new TreeViewSelectedItemBehavior(obj as TreeView));

        TreeViewSelectedItemBehavior view = behaviors[obj];
        view.ChangeSelectedItem(e.NewValue);
    }

    private class TreeViewSelectedItemBehavior
    {
        TreeView view;
        public TreeViewSelectedItemBehavior(TreeView view)
        {
            this.view = view;
            view.SelectedItemChanged += (sender, e) => SetSelectedItem(view, e.NewValue);
        }

        internal void ChangeSelectedItem(object p)
        {
            TreeViewItem item = (TreeViewItem)view.ItemContainerGenerator.ContainerFromItem(p);
            item.IsSelected = true;
        }
    }
}

Add the namespace declaration containing that class to your XAML and bind as follows (local is how I named the namespace declaration):

        <TreeView ItemsSource="{Binding Path=Root.Children}" local:TreeViewHelper.SelectedItem="{Binding Path=SelectedItem, Mode=TwoWay}">

    </TreeView>

Now you can bind the selected item, and also set it in your view model to change it programmatically, should that requirement ever arise. This is, of course, assuming that you implement INotifyPropertyChanged on that particular property.


It answers a little more than the OP is expecting... But I hope it could help some one at least.

If you want to execute a ICommand whenever the SelectedItem changed, you can bind a command on an event and the use of a property SelectedItem in the ViewModel isn't needed anymore.

To do so:

1- Add reference to System.Windows.Interactivity

xmlns:i="clr-namespace:System.Windows.Interactivity;assembly=System.Windows.Interactivity"

2- Bind the command to the event SelectedItemChanged

<TreeView x:Name="myTreeView" Margin="1"
            ItemsSource="{Binding Directories}">
    <i:Interaction.Triggers>
        <i:EventTrigger EventName="SelectedItemChanged">
            <i:InvokeCommandAction Command="{Binding SomeCommand}"
                                   CommandParameter="
                                            {Binding ElementName=myTreeView
                                             ,Path=SelectedItem}"/>
        </i:EventTrigger>
    </i:Interaction.Triggers>
    <TreeView.ItemTemplate>
           <!-- ... -->
    </TreeView.ItemTemplate>
</TreeView>

This can be accomplished in a 'nicer' way using only binding and the GalaSoft MVVM Light library's EventToCommand. In your VM add a command which will be called when the selected item is changed, and initialize the command to perform whatever action is necessary. In this example I used a RelayCommand and will just set the SelectedCluster property.

public class ViewModel
{
    public ViewModel()
    {
        SelectedClusterChanged = new RelayCommand<Cluster>( c => SelectedCluster = c );
    }

    public RelayCommand<Cluster> SelectedClusterChanged { get; private set; } 

    public Cluster SelectedCluster { get; private set; }
}

Then add the EventToCommand behavior in your xaml. This is really easy using blend.

<TreeView
      x:Name="lstClusters"
      ItemsSource="{Binding Path=Model.Clusters}" 
      ItemTemplate="{StaticResource HoofdCLusterTemplate}">
    <i:Interaction.Triggers>
        <i:EventTrigger EventName="SelectedItemChanged">
            <GalaSoft_MvvmLight_Command:EventToCommand Command="{Binding SelectedClusterChanged}" CommandParameter="{Binding ElementName=lstClusters,Path=SelectedValue}"/>
        </i:EventTrigger>
    </i:Interaction.Triggers>
</TreeView>

All to complicated... Go with Caliburn Micro (http://caliburnmicro.codeplex.com/)

View:

<TreeView Micro:Message.Attach="[Event SelectedItemChanged] = [Action SetSelectedItem($this.SelectedItem)]" />

ViewModel:

public void SetSelectedItem(YourNodeViewModel item) {}; 

I came across this page looking for the same answer as the original author, and proving there's always more than one way to do it, the solution for me was even easier than the answers provided here so far, so I figured I might as well add to the pile.

The motivation for the binding is to keep it nice & MVVM. The probable usage of the ViewModel is to have a property w/ a name such as "CurrentThingy", and somewhere else, the DataContext on some other thing is bound to "CurrentThingy".

Rather than going through additional steps required (eg: custom behavior, 3rd party control) to support a nice binding from the TreeView to my Model, and then from something else to my Model, my solution was to use simple Element binding the other thing to TreeView.SelectedItem, rather than binding the other thing to my ViewModel, thereby skipping the extra work required.

XAML:

<TreeView x:Name="myTreeView" ItemsSource="{Binding MyThingyCollection}">
.... stuff
</TreeView>

<!-- then.. somewhere else where I want to see the currently selected TreeView item: -->

<local:MyThingyDetailsView 
       DataContext="{Binding ElementName=myTreeView, Path=SelectedItem}" />

Of course, this is great for reading the currently selected item, but not setting it, which is all I needed.


You might also be able to use TreeViewItem.IsSelected property


There is also a way to create XAML bindable SelectedItem property without using Interaction.Behaviors.

public static class BindableSelectedItemHelper
{
    #region Properties

    public static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItemProperty = DependencyProperty.RegisterAttached("SelectedItem", typeof(object), typeof(BindableSelectedItemHelper),
        new FrameworkPropertyMetadata(null, OnSelectedItemPropertyChanged));

    public static readonly DependencyProperty AttachProperty = DependencyProperty.RegisterAttached("Attach", typeof(bool), typeof(BindableSelectedItemHelper), new PropertyMetadata(false, Attach));

    private static readonly DependencyProperty IsUpdatingProperty = DependencyProperty.RegisterAttached("IsUpdating", typeof(bool), typeof(BindableSelectedItemHelper));

    #endregion

    #region Implementation

    public static void SetAttach(DependencyObject dp, bool value)
    {
        dp.SetValue(AttachProperty, value);
    }

    public static bool GetAttach(DependencyObject dp)
    {
        return (bool)dp.GetValue(AttachProperty);
    }

    public static string GetSelectedItem(DependencyObject dp)
    {
        return (string)dp.GetValue(SelectedItemProperty);
    }

    public static void SetSelectedItem(DependencyObject dp, object value)
    {
        dp.SetValue(SelectedItemProperty, value);
    }

    private static bool GetIsUpdating(DependencyObject dp)
    {
        return (bool)dp.GetValue(IsUpdatingProperty);
    }

    private static void SetIsUpdating(DependencyObject dp, bool value)
    {
        dp.SetValue(IsUpdatingProperty, value);
    }

    private static void Attach(DependencyObject sender, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        TreeListView treeListView = sender as TreeListView;
        if (treeListView != null)
        {
            if ((bool)e.OldValue)
                treeListView.SelectedItemChanged -= SelectedItemChanged;

            if ((bool)e.NewValue)
                treeListView.SelectedItemChanged += SelectedItemChanged;
        }
    }

    private static void OnSelectedItemPropertyChanged(DependencyObject sender, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        TreeListView treeListView = sender as TreeListView;
        if (treeListView != null)
        {
            treeListView.SelectedItemChanged -= SelectedItemChanged;

            if (!(bool)GetIsUpdating(treeListView))
            {
                foreach (TreeViewItem item in treeListView.Items)
                {
                    if (item == e.NewValue)
                    {
                        item.IsSelected = true;
                        break;
                    }
                    else
                       item.IsSelected = false;                        
                }
            }

            treeListView.SelectedItemChanged += SelectedItemChanged;
        }
    }

    private static void SelectedItemChanged(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
    {
        TreeListView treeListView = sender as TreeListView;
        if (treeListView != null)
        {
            SetIsUpdating(treeListView, true);
            SetSelectedItem(treeListView, treeListView.SelectedItem);
            SetIsUpdating(treeListView, false);
        }
    }
    #endregion
}

You can then use this in your XAML as:

<TreeView  helper:BindableSelectedItemHelper.Attach="True" 
           helper:BindableSelectedItemHelper.SelectedItem="{Binding SelectedItem, Mode=TwoWay}">

I tried all solutions of this questions. No one solved my problem fully. So I think it's better to use such inherited class with redefined property SelectedItem. It will work perfectly if you choose tree element from GUI and if you set this property value in your code

public class TreeViewEx : TreeView
{
    public TreeViewEx()
    {
        this.SelectedItemChanged += new RoutedPropertyChangedEventHandler<object>(TreeViewEx_SelectedItemChanged);
    }

    void TreeViewEx_SelectedItemChanged(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<object> e)
    {
        this.SelectedItem = e.NewValue;
    }

    #region SelectedItem

    /// <summary>
    /// Gets or Sets the SelectedItem possible Value of the TreeViewItem object.
    /// </summary>
    public new object SelectedItem
    {
        get { return this.GetValue(TreeViewEx.SelectedItemProperty); }
        set { this.SetValue(TreeViewEx.SelectedItemProperty, value); }
    }

    // Using a DependencyProperty as the backing store for MyProperty.  This enables animation, styling, binding, etc...
    public new static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItemProperty =
        DependencyProperty.Register("SelectedItem", typeof(object), typeof(TreeViewEx),
        new FrameworkPropertyMetadata(null, FrameworkPropertyMetadataOptions.BindsTwoWayByDefault, SelectedItemProperty_Changed));

    static void SelectedItemProperty_Changed(DependencyObject dependencyObject, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        TreeViewEx targetObject = dependencyObject as TreeViewEx;
        if (targetObject != null)
        {
            TreeViewItem tvi = targetObject.FindItemNode(targetObject.SelectedItem) as TreeViewItem;
            if (tvi != null)
                tvi.IsSelected = true;
        }
    }                                               
    #endregion SelectedItem   

    public TreeViewItem FindItemNode(object item)
    {
        TreeViewItem node = null;
        foreach (object data in this.Items)
        {
            node = this.ItemContainerGenerator.ContainerFromItem(data) as TreeViewItem;
            if (node != null)
            {
                if (data == item)
                    break;
                node = FindItemNodeInChildren(node, item);
                if (node != null)
                    break;
            }
        }
        return node;
    }

    protected TreeViewItem FindItemNodeInChildren(TreeViewItem parent, object item)
    {
        TreeViewItem node = null;
        bool isExpanded = parent.IsExpanded;
        if (!isExpanded) //Can't find child container unless the parent node is Expanded once
        {
            parent.IsExpanded = true;
            parent.UpdateLayout();
        }
        foreach (object data in parent.Items)
        {
            node = parent.ItemContainerGenerator.ContainerFromItem(data) as TreeViewItem;
            if (data == item && node != null)
                break;
            node = FindItemNodeInChildren(node, item);
            if (node != null)
                break;
        }
        if (node == null && parent.IsExpanded != isExpanded)
            parent.IsExpanded = isExpanded;
        if (node != null)
            parent.IsExpanded = true;
        return node;
    }
} 

My requirement was for PRISM-MVVM based solution where a TreeView was needed and the bound object is of type Collection<> and hence needs HierarchicalDataTemplate. The default BindableSelectedItemBehavior wont be able to identify the child TreeViewItem. To make it to work in this scenario.

public class BindableSelectedItemBehavior : Behavior<TreeView>
{
    #region SelectedItem Property

    public object SelectedItem
    {
        get { return (object)GetValue(SelectedItemProperty); }
        set { SetValue(SelectedItemProperty, value); }
    }

    public static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItemProperty =
        DependencyProperty.Register("SelectedItem", typeof(object), typeof(BindableSelectedItemBehavior), new UIPropertyMetadata(null, OnSelectedItemChanged));

    private static void OnSelectedItemChanged(DependencyObject sender, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        var behavior = sender as BindableSelectedItemBehavior;
        if (behavior == null) return;
        var tree = behavior.AssociatedObject;
        if (tree == null) return;
        if (e.NewValue == null)
            foreach (var item in tree.Items.OfType<TreeViewItem>())
                item.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, false);
        var treeViewItem = e.NewValue as TreeViewItem;
        if (treeViewItem != null)
            treeViewItem.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, true);
        else
        {
            var itemsHostProperty = tree.GetType().GetProperty("ItemsHost", System.Reflection.BindingFlags.NonPublic | System.Reflection.BindingFlags.Instance);
            if (itemsHostProperty == null) return;
            var itemsHost = itemsHostProperty.GetValue(tree, null) as Panel;
            if (itemsHost == null) return;
            foreach (var item in itemsHost.Children.OfType<TreeViewItem>())
            {
                if (WalkTreeViewItem(item, e.NewValue)) 
                    break;
            }
        }
    }

    public static bool WalkTreeViewItem(TreeViewItem treeViewItem, object selectedValue)
    {
        if (treeViewItem.DataContext == selectedValue)
        {
            treeViewItem.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, true);
            treeViewItem.Focus();
            return true;
        }
        var itemsHostProperty = treeViewItem.GetType().GetProperty("ItemsHost", System.Reflection.BindingFlags.NonPublic | System.Reflection.BindingFlags.Instance);
        if (itemsHostProperty == null) return false;
        var itemsHost = itemsHostProperty.GetValue(treeViewItem, null) as Panel;
        if (itemsHost == null) return false;
        foreach (var item in itemsHost.Children.OfType<TreeViewItem>())
        {
            if (WalkTreeViewItem(item, selectedValue))
                break;
        }
        return false;
    }
    #endregion

    protected override void OnAttached()
    {
        base.OnAttached();
        this.AssociatedObject.SelectedItemChanged += OnTreeViewSelectedItemChanged;
    }

    protected override void OnDetaching()
    {
        base.OnDetaching();
        if (this.AssociatedObject != null)
        {
            this.AssociatedObject.SelectedItemChanged -= OnTreeViewSelectedItemChanged;
        }
    }

    private void OnTreeViewSelectedItemChanged(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<object> e)
    {
        this.SelectedItem = e.NewValue;
    }
}

This enables to iterate through all the elements irrespective of the level.


I suggest an addition to the behavior provided by Steve Greatrex. His behavior doesn't reflects changes from the source because it may not be a collection of TreeViewItems. So it is a matter of finding the TreeViewItem in the tree which datacontext is the selectedValue from the source. The TreeView has a protected property called "ItemsHost", which holds the TreeViewItem collection. We can get it through reflection and walk the tree searching for the selected item.

private static void OnSelectedItemChanged(DependencyObject sender, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        var behavior = sender as BindableSelectedItemBehaviour;

        if (behavior == null) return;

        var tree = behavior.AssociatedObject;

        if (tree == null) return;

        if (e.NewValue == null) 
            foreach (var item in tree.Items.OfType<TreeViewItem>())
                item.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, false);

        var treeViewItem = e.NewValue as TreeViewItem; 
        if (treeViewItem != null)
        {
            treeViewItem.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, true);
        }
        else
        {
            var itemsHostProperty = tree.GetType().GetProperty("ItemsHost", System.Reflection.BindingFlags.NonPublic | System.Reflection.BindingFlags.Instance);

            if (itemsHostProperty == null) return;

            var itemsHost = itemsHostProperty.GetValue(tree, null) as Panel;

            if (itemsHost == null) return;

            foreach (var item in itemsHost.Children.OfType<TreeViewItem>())
                if (WalkTreeViewItem(item, e.NewValue)) break;
        }
    }

    public static bool WalkTreeViewItem(TreeViewItem treeViewItem, object selectedValue) {
        if (treeViewItem.DataContext == selectedValue)
        {
            treeViewItem.SetValue(TreeViewItem.IsSelectedProperty, true);
            treeViewItem.Focus();
            return true;
        }

        foreach (var item in treeViewItem.Items.OfType<TreeViewItem>())
            if (WalkTreeViewItem(item, selectedValue)) return true;

        return false;
    }

This way the behavior works for two-way bindings. Alternatively, it is possible to move the ItemsHost acquisition to the Behavior's OnAttached method, saving the overhead of using reflection every time the binding updates.


WPF MVVM TreeView SelectedItem

... is a better answer, but does not mention a way to get/set the SelectedItem in the ViewModel.

  1. Add a IsSelected boolean property to your ItemViewModel, and bind to it in a Style Setter for the TreeViewItem.
  2. Add a SelectedItem property to your ViewModel used as the DataContext for the TreeView. This is the missing piece in the solution above.
    ' ItemVM...
    Public Property IsSelected As Boolean
        Get
            Return _func.SelectedNode Is Me
        End Get
        Set(value As Boolean)
            If IsSelected  value Then
                _func.SelectedNode = If(value, Me, Nothing)
            End If
            RaisePropertyChange()
        End Set
    End Property
    ' TreeVM...
    Public Property SelectedItem As ItemVM
        Get
            Return _selectedItem
        End Get
        Set(value As ItemVM)
            If _selectedItem Is value Then
                Return
            End If
            Dim prev = _selectedItem
            _selectedItem = value
            If prev IsNot Nothing Then
                prev.IsSelected = False
            End If
            If _selectedItem IsNot Nothing Then
                _selectedItem.IsSelected = True
            End If
        End Set
    End Property
<TreeView ItemsSource="{Binding Path=TreeVM}" 
          BorderBrush="Transparent">
    <TreeView.ItemContainerStyle>
        <Style TargetType="TreeViewItem">
            <Setter Property="IsExpanded" Value="{Binding IsExpanded}"/>
            <Setter Property="IsSelected" Value="{Binding IsSelected, Mode=TwoWay}"/>
        </Style>
    </TreeView.ItemContainerStyle>
    <TreeView.ItemTemplate>
        <HierarchicalDataTemplate ItemsSource="{Binding Children}">
            <TextBlock Text="{Binding Name}"/>
        </HierarchicalDataTemplate>
    </TreeView.ItemTemplate>
</TreeView>

After studying the Internet for a day I found my own solution for selecting an item after create a normal treeview in a normal WPF/C# environment

private void BuildSortTree(int sel)
        {
            MergeSort.Items.Clear();
            TreeViewItem itTemp = new TreeViewItem();
            itTemp.Header = SortList[0];
            MergeSort.Items.Add(itTemp);
            TreeViewItem prev;
            itTemp.IsExpanded = true;
            if (0 == sel) itTemp.IsSelected= true;
            prev = itTemp;
            for(int i = 1; i<SortList.Count; i++)
            {

                TreeViewItem itTempNEW = new TreeViewItem();
                itTempNEW.Header = SortList[i];
                prev.Items.Add(itTempNEW);
                itTempNEW.IsExpanded = true;
                if (i == sel) itTempNEW.IsSelected = true;
                prev = itTempNEW ;
            }
        }

It can also be done using the IsSelected property of the TreeView item. Here's how I managed it,

public delegate void TreeviewItemSelectedHandler(TreeViewItem item);
public class TreeViewItem
{      
  public static event TreeviewItemSelectedHandler OnItemSelected = delegate { };
  public bool IsSelected 
  {
    get { return isSelected; }
    set 
    { 
      isSelected = value;
      if (value)
        OnItemSelected(this);
    }
  }
}

Then in the ViewModel that contains the data your TreeView is bound to, just subscribe to the event in the TreeViewItem class.

TreeViewItem.OnItemSelected += TreeViewItemSelected;

And finally, implement this handler in the same ViewModel,

private void TreeViewItemSelected(TreeViewItem item)
{
  //Do something
}

And the binding of course,

<Setter Property="IsSelected" Value="{Binding IsSelected}" />    

I bring you my solution which offers the following features:

  • Supports 2 ways binding

  • Auto updates the TreeViewItem.IsSelected properties (according to the SelectedItem)

  • No TreeView subclassing

  • Items bound to ViewModel can be of any type (even null)

1/ Paste the following code in your CS:

public class BindableSelectedItem
{
    public static readonly DependencyProperty SelectedItemProperty = DependencyProperty.RegisterAttached(
        "SelectedItem", typeof(object), typeof(BindableSelectedItem), new PropertyMetadata(default(object), OnSelectedItemPropertyChangedCallback));

    private static void OnSelectedItemPropertyChangedCallback(DependencyObject d, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        var treeView = d as TreeView;
        if (treeView != null)
        {
            BrowseTreeViewItems(treeView, tvi =>
            {
                tvi.IsSelected = tvi.DataContext == e.NewValue;
            });
        }
        else
        {
            throw new Exception("Attached property supports only TreeView");
        }
    }

    public static void SetSelectedItem(DependencyObject element, object value)
    {
        element.SetValue(SelectedItemProperty, value);
    }

    public static object GetSelectedItem(DependencyObject element)
    {
        return element.GetValue(SelectedItemProperty);
    }

    public static void BrowseTreeViewItems(TreeView treeView, Action<TreeViewItem> onBrowsedTreeViewItem)
    {
        var collectionsToVisit = new System.Collections.Generic.List<Tuple<ItemContainerGenerator, ItemCollection>> { new Tuple<ItemContainerGenerator, ItemCollection>(treeView.ItemContainerGenerator, treeView.Items) };
        var collectionIndex = 0;
        while (collectionIndex < collectionsToVisit.Count)
        {
            var itemContainerGenerator = collectionsToVisit[collectionIndex].Item1;
            var itemCollection = collectionsToVisit[collectionIndex].Item2;
            for (var i = 0; i < itemCollection.Count; i++)
            {
                var tvi = itemContainerGenerator.ContainerFromIndex(i) as TreeViewItem;
                if (tvi == null)
                {
                    continue;
                }

                if (tvi.ItemContainerGenerator.Status == System.Windows.Controls.Primitives.GeneratorStatus.ContainersGenerated)
                {
                    collectionsToVisit.Add(new Tuple<ItemContainerGenerator, ItemCollection>(tvi.ItemContainerGenerator, tvi.Items));
                }

                onBrowsedTreeViewItem(tvi);
            }

            collectionIndex++;
        }
    }

}

2/ Example of use in your XAML file

<TreeView myNS:BindableSelectedItem.SelectedItem="{Binding Path=SelectedItem, Mode=TwoWay}" />  

(Let's just all agree that TreeView is obviously busted in respect to this problem. Binding to SelectedItem would have been obvious. Sigh)

I needed the solution to interact properly with the IsSelected property of TreeViewItem, so here's how I did it:

// the Type CustomThing needs to implement IsSelected with notification
// for this to work.
public class CustomTreeView : TreeView
{
    public CustomThing SelectedCustomThing
    {
        get
        {
            return (CustomThing)GetValue(SelectedNode_Property);
        }
        set
        {
            SetValue(SelectedNode_Property, value);
            if(value != null) value.IsSelected = true;
        }
    }

    public static DependencyProperty SelectedNode_Property =
        DependencyProperty.Register(
            "SelectedCustomThing",
            typeof(CustomThing),
            typeof(CustomTreeView),
            new FrameworkPropertyMetadata(
                null,
                FrameworkPropertyMetadataOptions.None,
                SelectedNodeChanged));

    public CustomTreeView(): base()
    {
        this.SelectedItemChanged += new RoutedPropertyChangedEventHandler<object>(SelectedItemChanged_CustomHandler);
    }

    void SelectedItemChanged_CustomHandler(object sender, RoutedPropertyChangedEventArgs<object> e)
    {
        SetValue(SelectedNode_Property, SelectedItem);
    }

    private static void SelectedNodeChanged(DependencyObject d, DependencyPropertyChangedEventArgs e)
    {
        var treeView = d as CustomTreeView;
        var newNode = e.NewValue as CustomThing;

        treeView.SelectedCustomThing = (CustomThing)e.NewValue;
    }
}

With this XAML:

<local:CustonTreeView ItemsSource="{Binding TreeRoot}" 
    SelectedCustomThing="{Binding SelectedNode,Mode=TwoWay}">
    <TreeView.ItemContainerStyle>
        <Style TargetType="TreeViewItem">
            <Setter Property="IsSelected" Value="{Binding IsSelected, Mode=TwoWay}" />
        </Style>
    </TreeView.ItemContainerStyle>
</local:CustonTreeView>

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