Visual Basic Tools
Certified Year Two Thousand Complacent!
the Software Forum's VB SIG and the List of VB Links that I've created to assist members.
Having trouble finding places to ask VB questions?
Try the newsgroups administered by the folks who publish the Visual Basic Programmer's Journal.
The Beginner's Newsgroup, where a lot of nice people will generally try to help.
The General Newsgroup, where almost any question will be addressed, or else you'll receive suggestions of which newsgroup(s) might be more helpful.
As the original author, I encourage free distribution of these programs. Any for-profit, or even at-cost, distribution must have my prior approval in writing (this specifically includes any "collections"). Source code is available to anyone who convinces me their reasons for wanting to see it don't conflict with my retention of authorship rights.
- NEW! ROT-13 Encoder/Decoder, compiled with VB 6.0
- My Pentium Divide-Bug Checker, which will quickly tell you if a processor is an early Pentium chip with the FDIV error. Interest seems to have died down a bit on the subject, so I never got around to building in more than one of the known divisors which illustrate the error. It's easy to enter them, though, if you know some. If you have a chip with the bug, the error message will be hard to miss. If you don't, this is one boring little app.
- One that I frequently use while programming in VB is my System Color Utility. This one overcomes a lack that the Properties Window Pallete has always had - there's no easy way to select the preassigned system colors. In my opinion, VB programmers too often hard-code colors, when they should instead use the desktop colors the user has chosen. This program illustrates the current colors, a status-bar shows their names, and a mouse click puts the constant value (left-click) or the constant name (right-click) onto the clipboard for easy paste into the Properties Window or source code.
- And, now, The 32-bit System Color Utility. As soon as I need one, I'll do it in VB4-16bit, too; but don't be surprised if VB5 is released before that happens.
- Add-Ins, anyone?
At VBITS-SF early this year, I was inspired during a presentation that discussed VB4 add-ins. This is one that helps manage add-ins. The presenter brought up her project, and everyone could see it take an extra minute or so because she'd left a large add-in enabled, and it had to load. My "add-in subtract-out" deselects all add-ins that are _after_ it in the VB.INI file, and it does so when you quit VB, so you can use it to categorize any add-ins you choose to as "transient." This version does not edit the VB.INI file for you, so you'll have to use WordPad or something to move lines around. A later version will do that for you, but I haven't had time to work on it. The 32-bit version of Add-In Sub-Out (run the .EXE to register it). Watch for an article in some VB publication later this year.
After presenting it at the Software Forum VB-SIG in June, I've become convinced that not enough people know how easy Add-ins can be. Since this is such a minimal, simple example that I call it "the 'Hello, World' of Add-ins," I've become convinced that I should share the source (in a ZIP) with one and all. Consider it freely licensed for any noncommercial use. For commercial use, contact me - I'm very reasonable.
Program Notes: you'll need the appropriate VBRUNnnn.DLL for any of these. There are lots of places to obtain them; I'll add links here if I notice some.
Sorry, the .EXE files have no help files or documentation - experimentation, and the paragraphs above, should show&tell you what they do
As the author, I have distribution rights to the content, exercised via this page. However, the publications cited also have a copyright claim. Therefore, I do not automatically authorize redistribution in other than "fair use" circumstances.
- Visual Basic TOOLtips, September/October 1995.
VBTT's editor has informed me that this will probably be the last-ever issue. Unfortunate. My contribution was a half-page tip entitled "A Read-Only Text Box - Without API Calls!" and you can download it in WindowsWrite 3.1 format. Note: If you're not browsing with Windows, you probably can't read the file; I hope to find time to create an html version you can simply view here.
- InfoWorld, various issues beginning in March, 1996
My first article accepted by InfoWorld was a "first look" at Sheridan's Class_Assist. Just a hint: I like it. My most extensive article so far was a review of [a beta version of] Vision Software's Vision Builder. I'm sure some day I'll have published a negative review of something, but Vision Builder sure wasn't it. I'm anxious for a project to put it to work on; as if I wasn't already so busy...
- Software Development magazine (Miller-Freeman)
A monthly VB column, March through November, 1999.
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