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Using Windows Forms controls in WPF
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Other things are more of a pain to convert.
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Fonts and pixels in WPF and Windows Forms
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One thing that might get you in trouble is that WPF and Windows Forms have a different approach for pixels. In Windows Forms, Pixels are device-dependent; in WPF, a Pixel always takes up 1/96th of an inch. This isn t normally a problem; but, if it is, you ll have to do the conversion yourself. Also, fonts in WPF are based on the 1/96th value, whereas Windows Forms fonts are based on a 1/72nd value. Fortunately, 72 is precisely 3/4ths of 96, so you can easily convert back and forth by multiplying or dividing by 0.75.
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In general, most Windows Forms functionality works fairly well in the host control. Microsoft has done a nice job with this one. Your users can tab between WPF and Windows Forms and back again without knowing that they re doing it. But, embedding Windows Forms (or anything) in WPF does come at a cost as well as losing some capabilities, there s a performance impact, which can be significant. It s obviously better to stick to a single technology if you can.
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20.1.4 Using your own Windows Forms controls In our example, we used one of Microsoft s Windows Forms controls that, all things being equal, we d expect to work. Using your own (or thirdparty) Windows Forms controls is just as easy. All you have to do is reference the appropriate assembly, add the namespace, and use the control. For example, we ve gone ahead and created an assembly with a (very ugly) Windows Forms user control (figure 20.6). Now, all you have to do is add a reference to the assembly under References, and add the appropriate namespace in the Windows tag:
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Figure 20.6 This is a classic Windows Forms user control. Obviously, in real life, you d have some more useful functionality at least, we hope you would. The control is called MyWindowsFormsControl and is in an assembly called MyWindowsFormsLibrary.
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xmlns:mwfl= "clr-namespace:MyWindowsFormsLibrary;assembly=MyWindowsFormsLibrary"
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Then, drag another WindowsFormsHost onto the dialog and set its content appropriately.
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<WindowsFormsHost Height="99" Margin="34,0,99,27" VerticalAlignment="Bottom"> <mwfl:MyWindowsFormsControl /> </WindowsFormsHost>
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And, voil , you ve embedded a custom user control (figure 20.7). The WindowsFormsHost has even automatically set the background properly.
Interoperability
Figure 20.7 A custom, embedded Windows Forms control
20.1.5 Popping up Windows Forms dialogs Another scenario for using existing Windows Forms functionality is one where you have an entire dialog already set up, and you want to use it in its entirety. As an example, we ll create a Windows Forms Form to display our results when the user hits the Accept button (figure 20.8). To bring this up as a modal dialog, we do exactly what we would have done in a classic Windows Forms application.
Figure 20.8 An ugly but serviceable Windows Forms dialog
private void button1_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e) { string name = textBox1.Text; DateTime born = birthday.Value; MyWindowsFormsLibrary.BirthdayDetails dlg = new MyWindowsFormsLibrary.BirthdayDetails(); dlg.SetDetails(name + " was born on " + born.ToLongDateString()); dlg.ShowDialog(); }
We ve added a method to our dialog called SetDetails() to populate the details text. The big thing is that we call ShowDialog() and the dialog pops up. It will even automatically stay on top of our main window until we dismiss it. We can also make the dialog modeless by calling Show() instead of ShowDialog().
dlg.Show();
This is more impressive than it sounds. Windows Forms controls need a message pump to make modeless forms works, but this is all taken care of for us. But, there is
Using Windows Forms controls in WPF
Figure 20.9 The control in the background is a Windows Forms dialog. Because it has no owner, it has disappeared behind the other dialog.
one issue. If we bring up the pop-up dialog and then click back on the main dialog, something like figure 20.9 happens. As you can see, the Windows Forms control has slipped behind the WPF window. This may be what you want; but, if you want it to always be on top, you have to set the owner of the Windows Forms control. This is tricky because the expected owner is an IWin32Window, and we don t have one of those. Fortunately, WPF provides a helper class that will help us solve this problem. Listing 20.2 shows how.
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