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DXCore plug-in Option Pages overview

December 28th, 2010

You can add custom user-friendly option pages that will automatically be integrated into the IDETools Options Dialog. If your DXCore plug-in has any kind of user-configuration, the options page will allow you and other developers easily customize the features of your plug-in.

Option pages offer a number of advantages:

  • They appear in one place, and are searchable by the user. This provides a consistent look and feel to the application.
  • The storage mechanism is decoupled from the options page itself. Settings are stored in a consistent location on disk, and easily transfer between machines.
  • They have custom events that make it easy to read and write settings to disk.

Options pages have a surface of a minimum size of 530×480 pixels. At runtime, options pages can be resized to the bigger size, but they cannot be smaller than the minimum size, so everything needs to fit in this space. If you need more room for your options controls, you might consider a second options page, or more traditional strategies for dealing with space constraints, such as scroll bars or perhaps a tab control.

You can use any third-party controls, but it’s really only safe to do this if you’re the only developer who will use your plug-in. If you expect to share plug-ins with other developers who might not have a license to your third-party control, it is recommended to use only the standard .NET controls, or controls that ship with the DXCore (the controls located in the “DXCore…” groups of the Toolbox). Bear in mind that the appearance of the Options Dialog can be changed and DXCore controls will change their “look and feel” when another dialog skin is applied.

Products: DXCore
Versions: 10.1 and up
VS IDEs: any
Updated: Dec/28/2010
ID: D055

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