AsyncRelayCommand and AsyncRelayCommand<T>

The AsyncRelayCommand and AsyncRelayCommand<T> are ICommand implementations that extend the functionalities offered by RelayCommand, with support for asynchronous operations.

Platform APIs: AsyncRelayCommand, AsyncRelayCommand<T>, RelayCommand, IAsyncRelayCommand, IAsyncRelayCommand<T>

How they work

AsyncRelayCommand and AsyncRelayCommand<T> have the following main features:

  • They extend the functionalities of the synchronous commands included in the library, with support for Task-returning delegates.
  • They can wrap asynchronous functions with an additional CancellationToken parameter to support cancelation, and they expose a CanBeCanceled and IsCancellationRequested properties, as well as a Cancel method.
  • They expose an ExecutionTask property that can be used to monitor the progress of a pending operation, and an IsRunning that can be used to check when an operation completes. This is particularly useful to bind a command to UI elements such as loading indicators.
  • They implement the IAsyncRelayCommand and IAsyncRelayCommand<T> interfaces, which means that viewmodel can easily expose commands using these to reduce the tight coupling between types. For instance, this makes it easier to replace a command with a custom implementation exposing the same public API surface, if needed.

Working with asynchronous commands

Let's imagine a scenario similar to the one described in the RelayCommand sample, but a command executing an asynchronous operation:

public class MyViewModel : ObservableObject
    public MyViewModel()
        DownloadTextCommand = new AsyncRelayCommand(DownloadText);

    public IAsyncRelayCommand DownloadTextCommand { get; }

    private Task<string> DownloadText()
        return WebService.LoadMyTextAsync();

With the related UI code:

        <viewModels:MyViewModel x:Name="ViewModel"/>
        <converters:TaskResultConverter x:Key="TaskResultConverter"/>

    <StackPanel Spacing="8" xml:space="default">
            <Run Text="Task status:"/>
            <Run Text="{x:Bind ViewModel.DownloadTextCommand.ExecutionTask.Status, Mode=OneWay}"/>
            <Run Text="Result:"/>
            <Run Text="{x:Bind ViewModel.DownloadTextCommand.ExecutionTask, Converter={StaticResource TaskResultConverter}, Mode=OneWay}"/>
            Content="Click me!"
            Command="{x:Bind ViewModel.DownloadTextCommand}"/>
            IsActive="{x:Bind ViewModel.DownloadTextCommand.IsRunning, Mode=OneWay}"/>

Upon clicking the Button, the command is invoked, and the ExecutionTask updated. When the operation completes, the property raises a notification which is reflected in the UI. In this case, both the task status and the current result of the task are displayed. Note that to show the result of the task, it is necessary to use the TaskExtensions.GetResultOrDefault method - this provides access to the result of a task that has not yet completed without blocking the thread (and possibly causing a deadlock).


  • Check out the sample app (for multiple UI frameworks) to see the MVVM Toolkit in action.
  • You can also find more examples in the unit tests.