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Introducing the Progress Developer Studio for OpenEdge Visual Designer

Introducing the Progress Developer Studio for OpenEdge Visual Designer

The OpenEdge Visual Designer is an editor that helps you develop attractive, powerful graphical user interfaces (GUIs) for ABL applications. Visual Designer users can take advantage of the rich functionality and the look and feel of .NET controls without using any non-ABL language or leaving the Progress Developer Studio for OpenEdge environment.
Note: The Visual Designer is supported only on Windows platforms.

UI visualization and ABL code

With the Visual Designer, you build OpenEdge GUI for .NET forms and dialogs, also referred to as visual containers, by using familiar GUI techniques to place and arrange controls on a Design Canvas. Behind the scenes, the Visual Designer takes care of generating the corresponding ABL code that allows the application to display these .NET forms and controls at run time. This ABL code, in the form of a class (.cls) file, is immediately available in the standard ABL Editor, where you can inspect it and add appropriate business logic. Progress Developer Studio for OpenEdge maintains synchronization between the class file and the graphical display of the UI model on the Design Canvas.

Property and event management

When an object is selected on the Design Canvas, the Properties view displays all properties and events associated with the object and allows you to edit their values.
The Visual Designer simplifies the process of creating event subscriptions and adding the appropriate event logic. For example, suppose you have placed a button on a form and want to define how the application should respond when a user clicks that button. When you simply double-click the event name in the Properties view:
*The Visual Designer automatically adds to the class file both a subscription to a button-click event and a method to contain the code defining the application response to the event.
*The ABL Editor displays the class file with the cursor positioned at the newly created event method.

Custom user-defined controls

In addition to the extensive set of commercially published UI controls that the Visual Designer provides, you can create and reuse custom controls that extend or combine existing controls. You can create two types of custom controls:
*Inherited controls, which derive properties and events from a super class (that is, a parent control).
*User controls, which are composite controls made up of multiple individual controls grouped in a container.


Note: The OpenEdge Release 10.2B demos have not been updated for OpenEdge Release 11.0. Since 10.2B, OpenEdge Architect has been renamed as Progress Developer Studio for OpenEdge. In addition, OpenEdge Release 11.0 includes some feature enhancements and other changes. Despite the differences between 10.2B and 11.0, the demos are still a useful introduction to Progress Developer Studio for OpenEdge.
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