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INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT ENVIRONMENT FOR VISUAL BASIC (IDE)

One of the most significant changes in visual basic 6.0 is Integrated Development Environment.
    IDE is a term commonly used in the programming world to describe the interface and environment that we use to create our application.
       It is called integrated because we can access virtually all the development tools that we need from one screen called an interface.
The Visual Basic IDE is made up of a number of components :->
1.  Menu Bar.
2.  Tool Bar.
3.  Project Explorer.
4.  Properties windows.
5.  Form Layout Window.
6.  Tool Box.
7.  Form Designer.
8.  Object browser.
                

1. Menu Bar

        The menu bar displaying the commands that we are required to build an application.  The main menu items have sub menu items that can be chosen when needed.  Various menus available in menu bar are File, Edit, View, Project etc.

2. Tool Bar

        The standard tool bar :-> The standard tool bar appears just below the menu bar and contains tools for openings and saving, files, cutting, copying, pasting and a variety of other commands.
  The toolbar in the menu bar provide quick access to the commonly used commands and a button in the toolbar is clicked one to carryout the actions represented by it.

3. Project Explorer

       The project explorer is docked in the right side of the screen, just under the tool bar.
The project explorer serves as a quick reference to the various elements of a project namely form, classes and modules.  All of the objects that make up the  application are packed in a project.
     A simple project will typically contains one form which is a window that is designed as part of a program interface.
       It is possible to develop any no. of forms for us in a program.  In addition to forms, the project explorer window also lists code modules and classes.

4. Properties Window

       The properties window is docked under the project explorer window.  The properties window exposes the various properties/ characteristics of a selected objects.  Each and every form in an application  is considered as an object.  Now, each object in VB has characteristics such as color and size other characteristics affect not just the appearance of the object but the way it behaves too.  All these characteristics of an object are called its properties.
      Thus,  form has properties and any controls placed on it will have properties too.

5. Object Browser

      The Object Browser allows us to browse through the various properties, events and methods that are made available to us.  It is accessed by selecting object browser from the view menu or by pressing the key F2.  The left column of the object browser lists the objects classes that are available in the projects that are opened and the controls that are opened are referenced in them.  After an object from the classes list, we can see its members( properties, methods and events) in the right column.
                                 

6. Tool Box

       The Toolbox contains a set of controls that are used to place on a form at design time thereby creating the user interface area.
      Additional controls can be included in the toolbox by using component menus item on the project menu.
Various controls available in the Toolbox are:-.>
1. The pointer provides a way to move and resize the controls and forms.
2. Label displays a text that the user cannot modify or interact with.
3. Check box displays a true/false or yes/no options.
4. Text box is a control used to display message and enter text.
5. The list box display a list of items from which a user can select one.
6. Combo box contains a text box and a list box.  Thus allows the user to select an item from the drop down list box or to type the in a selection in the text box.
7. H scrollbar and V scrollbar controls allow the user to select a value within the specified range of values.
8. Timer control executes the time events at specified intervals of time.
9. OLE control is used to link or embedded an object, display and manipulate data from other window based application.
10. Command button carries out the specified action when the clicks it.
11. Line controls draws a straight line to the form.

7. Form Layout Window

        The Form layout window appears at the right side of the screen just below the properties window.  This gives information about where the form will appear on the screen.

8. Form Designer

        The form designer as the name indicates is used to design forms.  The various controls such as textboxes, buttons, and labels can be placed on a form depending on the requirement of an application.

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