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Design mode (from the thread on external windows).

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Posted by Nick Gammon   Australia  (23,016 posts)  [Biography] bio   Forum Administrator
Date Reply #15 on Thu 27 Jul 2006 08:45 PM (UTC)
As Tsunami says, I also feel your pain, however. :)

There are times when doing things with Windows, I am not sure:

  • If it is possible at all.

  • If it is possible, is it easy or hard.

  • Whatever the method is, what the method is.

  • Does it involve something simple like a 1-line change, or adding a whole extra file to the project.

  • Will it be compatible with all versions (eg. Windows 98 users).

  • Where the documenation is, if any.

  • Where the example code is, if any.

  • If the example code I happen to find actually runs without bugs, or introduces its own problems.

Sometimes it is easy, sometimes it isn't.

- Nick Gammon

www.gammon.com.au, www.mushclient.com
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Posted by Shadowfyr   USA  (1,786 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #16 on Fri 28 Jul 2006 06:19 PM (UTC)
Basically a "standard control" is, fundamentally, just a window within a window, like Nick said. There isn't really any question of design mode vs. runtime mode. I think all of that stuff is a rather different specification, perhaps only for OCX or ActiveX.

Yes, I suspect you are correct. This wasn't a problem, so long as it was possible to use existing ActiveX components and there existed some class of "window" that was also an ActiveX object. The problem, as it turns out, is that you "can't" use the former the way I wanted, without a license, and the later doesn't exist as a standard control for ActiveX anyway.

Basically, the only way to make it work, it seems, is to develop your own, non-copy protected, versions of ActiveX controls, which one hopes the compiler will auto-generate most of the OLE specific code for. If not, then its still possible. I have a book on how OLE works, so as long as the control followed the specifications...

All in all, this could have been very easy. But it turns out MS intentionally made it hard, which is why companies get by with charging $200-300 for a "solution" to the same problem. They had to basically reinvent the wheel, since the one MS supplies has an intentional flaw, sort of a, "Warning! Will not work outside our test facility.", sticker.

The main thing that pisses me off about it is that up to this point I have avoided having to code in C++, not just because I don't know it very well, but because I can't afford the full blown VC++ system, which has all the fancy macros and files needed to auto-generate the code needed to do this the hard way. :(
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Posted by David Haley   USA  (3,881 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #17 on Fri 28 Jul 2006 06:31 PM (UTC)
Does the Express version coupled with the Platform SDK not have the stuff you need? It doesn't have MFC, but I don't think you need that, right? It's free for non-commercial use.

David Haley aka Ksilyan
Head Programmer,
Legends of the Darkstone

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Posted by Shadowfyr   USA  (1,786 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #18 on Sat 29 Jul 2006 05:51 PM (UTC)
Hmm. Maybe.. I looked at that, but it was a big download, and I wasn't sure how useful it would be.
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