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Object Browser Window

The Object Browser displays the classes, properties, methods, events, and constants available for COM object libraries. You can use it to find and use objects you create, as well as objects from other applications.

To launch the Object Browser from the Tools menu, choose Object Browser and open a COM library to view.

The Object Browser application is referenced by _OBJECTBROWSER system variable (which by default references objectbrowser.app). You can set this from the File Locations tab of the Options dialog box.

Classes & Members pane

Lists the classes, members, interfaces, enums, constants, and other information available from the class type library. To display members of each category, expand the category.

Members pane

Lists the member details of the selected item in the Classes & Members pane. If a class is selected, its events, methods, and properties are displayed.

Description pane

Displays the definition of the selected item, prototype syntax, and a hyperlink to the class, library, or type to which the item belongs. Some members have hyperlinks to their parent class. When an interface is selected, the description pane includes the Interface ID number.

You can copy or drag text from the description pane to the editing window.

Open Type Library button

Displays the Open Type Library dialog box so you can select a particular COM Component or ActiveX Control. To display a list of recently opened libraries, click the down arrow.

Open Type Library dialog box

Appears when you click the Open Type Library button or right-click the Object Browser and then click Open.

Name

Description

Recent History tab

Displays a list of recently opened libraries. To add a library to the Object Browser, select the check box next to the library. To clear all content in the Recent History list, click Clear History.

COM Libraries tab

Shows a list of all available COM class libraries on your system. The list includes libraries for COM components and ActiveX controls.

The first time you click this tab, the COM libraries are read from your system registry and cached to a local FoxRefs.dbf table. When you click the tab again, libraries are read from this table.

To reload all class libraries from your system, click the Refresh button. To select and load an individual library (.tlb, .ocx, .olb, .dll, .exe), click Browse to open a file picker dialog box.

Current Selection Tab

Displays a list of all open libraries.

To close individual libraries, clear the check box next to the library name. To close all libraries, click Close All.

Back button

Moves selection focus back to the last item that you viewed.

Forward button

Moves selection focus to the item you were viewing before clicking the Back button.

Refresh button

Refreshes the contents of the Object Browser by reloading the selected libraries. This is useful for frequently changing COM components under development. Additionally, cached libraries are refreshed.

Copy button

Makes it possible for you to copy the selected item in the current list. If there is no explicit selection in the Description pane, the entire text is copied.

Find button

Displays the Find view so you can enter a specific text string to search for within the libraries opened in the Object Browser.

Find view

Expands at the top of the Object Browser when you click the Find button. Use the Find view to search for a specific text phrase in the library.

Name

Description

Look for: textbox

Enter text for which to search. The default search includes all opened libraries, all their members, and any item that contains the search text.

Go button

Click button to search for text entered in the text box. When you click this button a new node is added for each opened library to the Classes & Members pane with expression "(Search: <searchtext>)" appended to the end of the library. You can refine search using the Advanced view.

Switch to advanced find... link

Displays additional search options to perform a more refined search.

Libraries dropdown

Limits search to all opened libraries or just a single one. Advanced Find view only.

Scope dropdown

Limits search to members of all libraries or just a single one. The list of available options includes Classes, Constants, Enums, Interfaces, Methods, Events, and Properties. Advanced Find view only.

Options dropdown

Determines how text search is made. Options include Contained in, Starts with, and Exactly like. Advanced Find view only.

Options button

Displays the Options dialog box so that you can control various display options. You can also set custom add-ins for use with the Object Browser.

Display Options tab, Options dialog box

This tab in the Options dialog box makes it possible for you to control the visual aspects of the Object Browser.

Name

Description

Highlight Potential Sources of Events check box

Specifies whether a potential source of events (interface or method) is highlighted.

Highlight Default Items check box

Specifies whether default items are highlighted using a bold font style.

Display Hidden Items check box

Specifies whether hidden items (such as interface, methods, and properties) are displayed.

Auto Expand Details check box

Specifies whether top-level items in the detail pain are expanded automatically.

Auto Drill Down Details check box

Specifies whether complex hierarchies in the Methods pane (such as methods and properties for each interface) are expanded automatically.

Display VTable Interfaces check box

Specifies whether VTable based interfaces and their members are displayed.

List all interfaces defining a method, event, or property in detail check box

Specifies whether all interfaces defining a method or property are listed in the Description pane.

Display properties that start with an underscore (_) check box

Properties that start with an underscore are usually placeholders for enums (a collections of constants). For this reason, they are not displayed by default.

Display members that are defined in IUnknown or IDispatch check box

All COM objects have methods that are defined in the IDispatch and IUnknown interfaces. These methods must be there to work in a COM environment; however, they usually are not useful directly to the Visual FoxPro developer.

List members parameters in detail check box

Method parameters can be listed directly in the Members pane. However, note that the parameters are listed in more detail in the Description pane.

List interfaces in class details check box

All creatable classes are based on one or more interfaces. Often interfaces listed in the Members pane simply show the same information as the entire class, but sometimes they provide more insight.

Show Interface Inheritance structure check box

Specifies whether inherited interfaces shall be displayed in the Members pane.

Font button

Specifies font for interface elements of the Object Browser.

Add Ins tab, Options dialog box

This tab in the Options dialog box makes it possible for you to add custom add-ins.

Name

Description

Install Add-In button

Installs a new add-in.

Installed Add-Ins list

Displays all loaded add-ins.

Remove button

This button is displayed in the Add-Ins list next to an installed add-in. Click this button to remove an add-in. The add-in file is not actually deleted.

Help button

Displays documentation on the selected member. In addition, you can press F1.

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