Sunsetting XAML Spy

Monday, May 10, 2021

XAML Spy is being retired. As of today XAML Spy licenses can no longer be purchased or renewed. It has been five years since the last public update of XAML Spy, it’s time to formally pull the plug.

What happened?

With the demise of Silverlight, XAML Spy moved to add support for Xamarin Android and iOS apps. Along with support for good old WPF and Windows 10 UWP, XAML Spy covered all XAML based client frameworks available back in 2016.

However, keeping XAML Spy afloat became increasingly difficult with the XAML inspection tools included for free in Visual Studio, and the Xamarin Inspector. Today, with advanced features such as XAML hot reload baked in Visual Studio, there is little reason to spend a few bucks on an inspection tool from a third party.

“As soon as Microsoft enters any market, it will become the default” - Paul Stovell

It’s true, and it happened to XAML Spy. This is how Microsoft operates, and there is little that people outside Microsoft can do about it. It is what it is. On the upside it has been a great couple of years. Building and maintaining XAML Spy (and its predecessor Silverlight Spy) has been an amazing experience. To be in a unique position to build your own software product, having 1,000s of loyal customers, and to be able to make a comfortable living out of it, has been a privilege.

What does this all mean?

XAML Spy is being retired, this has some implications;

  • XAML Spy is no longer supported. No software updates, no support. The software hasn’t been updated in a while, but was supported until now.
  • The license purchase form is no longer available. The registration with our online reseller 2checkout has been pulled.
  • Automatic license renewals are cancelled.
  • The latest versions of XAML Spy will continue to be available in the download section. If you purchased a license (thank you!), it will still work with eligible versions of XAML Spy.
  • The website will remain online for reference.

Should you have any questions or concerns about this announcement, please feel free to reach out.


Wrapping up with a couple of screenshots. Let’s face it, XAML Spy was a thing of a beauty and certainly the best looking developer tool out there.

Thank you for your business.

Koen Zwikstra, First Floor Software