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Replacing form controls in VB6

Replacing form controls in VB6

(OP)
My company has a VB6 app (with source). A former employee made the mistake of using a non-redistributable DLL (FM20.dll). We need to replace the controls FM20.dll offered on a single form.

As I understand it, the two form controls we utilize could be replaced as:
*MSForms.ComboBox (FM20.DLL) to native VB6 ComboBox control
*MSForms.TabStrip (FM20.DLL) to Tabbed Dialog Control 6.0 (TABCTL32.OCX)

Does this sound reasonable or am I demonstrating complete ignorance of VB6?

While I have a license/installation of VB6, I barely know how to use it and have not touched it since 2000. Can someone point me toward success with either the steps to replace the form controls ...or to a good online tutorial/resource?

Or...supposing that I don't have the brain matter to pull this off, can someone recommend a good place (ie. freelance site) to find a good VB6 developer? We've already failed to migrate this to .net so it seems that keeping it in VB6 is ideal.

(I do not have an active MSDN subscription.)

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

That's just my opinion here...
There had to be a reason why your former employee used non-VB6 native controls. (I hope)
Do they provide something that 'regular' combo box and Tab control do not? Like some crazy colors combinations, fonts, behavior, etc.? If so, you will probably loose them with VB controls. Plus you will have to make some changes to the code to remove what you have and accommodate VB controls.

Have fun.

---- Andy

There is a great need for a sarcasm font.

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

You could always suggest that the user download and install the free Microsoft ActiveX control pad - which legally contains FM20.dll ... (i.e a cheap and easy way to legally get it installed on the target box) without having to buy Office ...

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

(OP)
From what I can observe, the use of FM20.dll was due simply to ignorance. The function does not appear to be extraordinary.

I tried the separate install of the MS ActiveX control pad months ago and ran into issues. The challenge is having more than one (and more than one version of) fm20.dll installed on a system. Our VB6 program requires an old version that is not compatible with the fm20.dll bundled with modern Office.

However, another stab at it today is showing a bit more success.

The installer packager I'm using (Setup Factory) allows me to download the ActiveX control pad installer from Microsoft and execute it. I think a solution is near. Thanks all!

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

>Our VB6 program requires an old version that is not compatible with the fm20.dll

You might want to try using late binding rather than early binding to address that issue if it really is a problem.

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

"We've already failed to migrate this to .net so it seems that keeping it in VB6 is ideal." - well, is it 'ideal'? You do know that you are running on a borrow time here. Microsoft gave up VB6 many years ago (2004?) for .NET environment. Operating Systems, so far, do support applications written in VB6. But for how long...? If you are going to use this app for some time, I would re-consider re-writing it with something more 'up-to-date'.

Have fun.

---- Andy

There is a great need for a sarcasm font.

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

>?But for how long...?

Well, until at least 2025 for Windows 10 ...

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

(OP)
We were running on borrowed time since 2000. We have several VB6 apps on life support but management refuses to fix what isn't completely broken. Each new release of Windows has some of us hoping that our software will break so that management will finally devote resources. Until that time, we put lipstick on a pig.

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

"We were running on borrowed time since 2000" - not to be picky, but if I remember correctly, VB6 was introduced in 1998 or 1999, and VB.NET first showed up in 2002. I could be wrong.

"we put lipstick on a pig" - nicely put. smile I will use it myself...

Have fun.

---- Andy

There is a great need for a sarcasm font.

RE: Replacing form controls in VB6

(OP)
The VB6 timeline is correct. I'm referring to our own use of VB6. Our programs were for services others in our industry already implemented and better managed as online apps.

But even before the turn of the century, there was a good sense that VB was losing focus...or at least competition was growing, including from MS as it briefly promoted Visual J++. I received VB6 as a free add-on to a Visual J++ license.

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