vb.net barcode generator open source Building a Stand-Alone Window Forms Program in C#.NET

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Building a Stand-Alone Window Forms Program
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We will start by building a self-contained Window Forms program. Although simple, this program solves a real-life problem for me, at least. As I write this, I am training for my first triathlon, and being something of a stats geek, I keep detailed records of my training sessions. I record my running and cycling distances in miles, but when I do my swim training, it is in a pool that is measured in meters. I also like to keep a rough count of the calories I burn while training so that I can balance my diet. I use a heart-rate monitor when I run or cycle, but it doesn t work in the pool. I record the number of pool lengths I complete and the time that it has taken me, and from this I want to know the distance in miles, the number of calories I have burned, and my average pace. We are going to use Windows Forms to build a converter to solve my problem. Figure 32-1 shows the completed program.
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CHAPTER 32 WINDOWS FORMS
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Figure 32-1. The completed Swim Calculator program In the following sections, I ll demonstrate how to create this program and explain some of the characteristics of Windows Forms along the way.
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Creating the Project
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The first step is to create the Windows Forms project. Select New Project from the Visual Studio File menu, and select Windows Forms Application from the list of templates, as shown in Figure 32-2. The set of templates available will depend on which edition of Visual Studio you have installed and which options you selected during installation.
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Figure 32-2. Selecting the Windows Forms Application template Give your project a name, and click the OK button. The new project will contain two key files. The first is Program.cs. This is the code file that contains the Main method for your program. It will have contents similar to Listing 32-1.
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CHAPTER 32 WINDOWS FORMS
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Listing 32-1. The Contents of Program.cs using using using using System; System.Collections.Generic; System.Linq; System.Windows.Forms;
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namespace SwimCalc { static class Program { /// <summary> /// The main entry point for the application. /// </summary> [STAThread] static void Main() { Application.EnableVisualStyles(); Application.SetCompatibleTextRenderingDefault(false); Application.Run(new Form1()); } } } We don t need to edit this file, but you can see that a Windows Forms program has class and a Main method like any other C# program. The code statements in the Main method call members of the Application class in the System.Windows.Forms namespace, which contains most of the Windows Forms classes. The most important statement is this one:
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Application.Run(new Form1());
This statement creates a new Form1 object and passes it to the Application.Run method. The Form1 class is contained in the Form1.cs code file in the project. If you double-click this file in the Solution Explorer, you will see the Windows Forms design surface. All that is on the design surface at the moment is the main Windows Form for our program, as shown in Figure 32-3.
Figure 32-3. The empty design surface
CHAPTER 32 WINDOWS FORMS
All the user interface technologies that .NET supports have visual designers, where you drag controls you require to the design surface and arrange them as you want them to appear. Controls are the elements of a user interface. They range from basic items (such as buttons and labels) to complex components (date pickers and data grids), and they include items that can help you with the function of your program but that are invisible to the user (data sources and LINQ queries). The design surface in Figure 32-3 is a blank gray window because we have not yet put any controls in place. We get some basic functions for free, even though we haven t done any design work. If you compile and run the project, you will see the same empty window. Note that the icon in the taskbar and the button at the top right of the window works as it should.
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