Posts tagged with c - page 11

WinForms tricks & tips

TreeView right-mouse button select the node

I’m not sure why it doesn’t do this as standard but a simple event handler should do the trick:

private void treeView_MouseDown(object sender, MouseEventArgs e) {
    if (e.Button == MouseButtons.Right) {
    TreeNode node = treeView.GetNodeAt(e.X, e.Y);
    if (node != null)
        treeView.SelectedNode = node;
    }
}

Adding text to a text box

People have asked (in the IRC #CSharp) why adding text to a TextBox is so slow and flickery. Normally they are trying:

textBox1.Text += myNewText;

The problem with this is that it copies all the Text from the text box then adds myNewText to it and copies the whole result back. This is because strings in .NET are immutable, i.e. can’t be changed, and so adding one string to another always results in this overhead (and hence the existence of the StringBuilder class).

The solution is to abandon the slow, inefficient string concatenation and use the method AppendText thusly:

textBox1.AppendText(myNewText);

Which is fast and efficient whilst also being available to TextBox, RichTextBox and MaskedTextBox (by virtue of being a method of BaseTextBox).

They usually also ask how to make the text box scroll to the end. Just use the following line:

textBox1.ScrollToCaret();

Don’t forget keyboard input

Check those tab orders and accelerator keys!

Creating dynamic controls

If you’re ever unsure how to work with a dynamic control just create it in Visual Studio’s Designer and then head into the .designer.cs file and examine the code it generates.

Windows Forms FAQ

There are many other hints, tips and solutions in the Windows Forms FAQ.

[)amien

Parameterising the IN clause of an SQL SELECT in .NET

I’m a fan of parameterized queries with a strong dislike for building SQL (or other magic strings). Encoding, escaping errors, localization formatting problems and injection can run rampant when you think everything is a string.

Problem

Today I found myself a quandary as I needed to SELECT records based on a list of values I had. e.g.

SELECT * FROM Products WHERE ProductCode IN ('ABC123', 'DEF456', 'GHI789')

At first glance the relevant parameterized version might look like:

SELECT * FROM Products WHERE ProductCode IN (@productlist)

The problem here however is that if you put a comma-separate list of items into a string parameter named @productlist then it sends this to the database server:

SELECT * FROM Products WHERE ProductCode IN ('ABC123, DEF456, GHI789')

That’s not what we want at all.

This hack isn’t pretty and it has some limitations:
  • Only works with named parameters
  • Could upset some DB providers that don’t like having command parameters removed or command text modified
  • Parameter name to replace must be totally unique – i.e. not exist as a subset of another parameter name
  • Only preserves the basic IDbCommand declared properties

It should however work across DB providers and types.

Usage

The previous example would mean we use exactly the expected parameterized version with @productlist in place.

Add the parameter as you’d expect but instead of assigning a string/numeric to it assign something IEnumerable.

Finally call this method against the command and parameter before you execute it for the ‘magic’ to happen:

The ‘magic’

public void ExpandDbArrayParameter(IDbCommand cmd, IDbDataParameter parameter) {
  if (parameter.Value is IEnumerable) {
    int index = 0;
    StringBuilder newParameterSQL = new StringBuilder();
    foreach(Object value in (IEnumerable) parameter.Value) {
      String valueParameterName = String.Format("{0}{1}", parameter.ParameterName, ++index);
      IDataParameter valueParameter = cmd.CreateParameter();
      valueParameter.DbType = parameter.DbType;
      valueParameter.Direction = parameter.Direction;
      valueParameter.ParameterName = valueParameterName;
      valueParameter.SourceColumn = parameter.SourceColumn;
      valueParameter.SourceVersion = parameter.SourceVersion;
      valueParameter.Value = value;
      cmd.Parameters.Add(valueParameter);

      if (index == 1)
        newParameterSQL.Append(valueParameterName);
      else
        newParameterSQL.Append("," + valueParameterName);
      }
      cmd.Parameters.Remove(parameter);
      cmd.CommandText = cmd.CommandText.Replace(parameter.ParameterName, newParameterSQL.ToString());
    }
}

[)amien

.NET quick samples: Up-times, ages, rounding to n places

Just a few quick .NET samples for performing some common tasks that the .NET Framework doesn’t do for you:

System uptime

using System.Diagnostics;

public TimeSpan GetUptime() {
    var systemUpTime = new PerformanceCounter("System", "System Up Time");
    systemUpTime.NextValue(); // Required to work!
    return TimeSpan.FromSeconds(systemUpTime.NextValue())));
}

Calculating age

public int GetAge(DateTime birthday) { 
    int years = DateTime.Now.Year - birthday.Year;
    return (birthday.DayOfYear >= DateTime.Now.DayOfYear) ? years : years - 1;
}

Rounding to n decimal places

public decimal ArithmeticRound(decimal d, int decimals) {
    var power = (decimal)Math.Pow(10, decimals);
    return (decimal.Floor((Math.Abs(d) * power) + 0.4m) / power) * Math.Sign(d);
}

[)amien

Extending GridView to access generated columns

ASP.NET’s GridView is a useful control and one of it’s best features is it’s ability to generate the columns automatically from the data source given.

The problem however is that these generated columns are not exposed as part of the Columns collection or indeed available at all so you can’t hide or manipulate the selected columns.

One simple scenario might be that you want the first column to be a “View” link to drill down into the row displayed. Whilst you can add the column to the GridView before data binding you can’t actually pull out the information needed from another columns to construct the URL.

By sub-classing GridView you can obtain this functionality with some caveats.

Version 1: Auto generated columns added to the Columns collection… with caveats.

using System;
using System.Data;
using System.Collections;
using System.Web.UI.WebControls;

public class GridViewEx1 : GridView
{
    private DataControlFieldCollection originalColumns;

    public GridViewEx1() : base() {
    }

    public void RecordColumns() {
        originalColumns = new DataControlFieldCollection();
        foreach(DataControlField column in Columns)
            originalColumns.Add(column as DataControlField);
    }

    public void ResetColumns() {
        if (originalColumns == null)
            RecordColumns();
        else {
            Columns.Clear();
            foreach(DataControlField column in originalColumns)
                Columns.Add(column as DataControlField);
        }
    }

    protected override ICollection CreateColumns(PagedDataSource dataSource, bool useDataSource) {
        ResetColumns();
        ICollection generatedColumns = base.CreateColumns(dataSource, useDataSource);
        foreach(DataControlField column in generatedColumns)
            if (!originalColumns.Contains(column))
                Columns.Add(column as DataControlField);
        return Columns;
    }
}

This version provides some compatibility with existing code/expectations in that the auto-generated columns are part of the Columns collection after the DataBind.

Should you call DataBind again however as well as wiping out the changes to the generated columns (they are, after all re-generated) any additional columns added to the collection after the first DataBind will also be lost as it does not track which are added by the programmer and which automatically.

Version 2: All bound columns exposed as BoundColumns, user ones as Columns.

using System;
using System.Data;
using System.Collections;
using System.Web.UI.WebControls;

public class GridViewEx2 : GridView
{
    private DataControlFieldCollection boundColumns = new DataControlFieldCollection();

    public GridViewEx2() : base() {
    }

    public DataControlFieldCollection BoundColumns {
        get { return boundColumns; }
    }

    protected override ICollection CreateColumns(PagedDataSource dataSource, bool useDataSource) {
        ICollection generatedColumns = base.CreateColumns(dataSource, useDataSource);
        BoundColumns.Clear();
        foreach (DataControlField column in generatedColumns)
            BoundColumns.Add(column as DataControlField);
        return BoundColumns;
    }
}

After the DataBind you will have full access to the generated columns as part of the BoundColumns collection.

[)amien