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How to: Create an MDI Form with ToolStripPanel Controls

You can create a multiple document interface (MDI) form that has ToolStrip controls framing it on all four sides.

The following code example demonstrates how to use docked ToolStripPanel controls to frame an MDI window with four ToolStrip controls.

In the example, the Join method attaches the ToolStrip controls to the corresponding ToolStripPanel controls.

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Windows.Forms;
using System.Drawing;


// This code example demonstrates how to use ToolStripPanel 
// controls with a multiple document interface (MDI). 
public class Form1 : Form
    public Form1()
        // Make the Form an MDI parent. 
        this.IsMdiContainer = true;

        // Create ToolStripPanel controls.
        ToolStripPanel tspTop = new ToolStripPanel();
        ToolStripPanel tspBottom = new ToolStripPanel();
        ToolStripPanel tspLeft = new ToolStripPanel();
        ToolStripPanel tspRight = new ToolStripPanel();

        // Dock the ToolStripPanel controls to the edges of the form.
        tspTop.Dock = DockStyle.Top;
        tspBottom.Dock = DockStyle.Bottom;
        tspLeft.Dock = DockStyle.Left;
        tspRight.Dock = DockStyle.Right;

        // Create ToolStrip controls to move among the  
        // ToolStripPanel controls. 

        // Create the "Top" ToolStrip control and add
        // to the corresponding ToolStripPanel.
        ToolStrip tsTop = new ToolStrip();

        // Create the "Bottom" ToolStrip control and add
        // to the corresponding ToolStripPanel.
        ToolStrip tsBottom = new ToolStrip();

        // Create the "Right" ToolStrip control and add
        // to the corresponding ToolStripPanel.
        ToolStrip tsRight = new ToolStrip();

        // Create the "Left" ToolStrip control and add
        // to the corresponding ToolStripPanel.
        ToolStrip tsLeft = new ToolStrip();

        // Create a MenuStrip control with a new window.
        MenuStrip ms = new MenuStrip();
        ToolStripMenuItem windowMenu = new ToolStripMenuItem("Window");
        ToolStripMenuItem windowNewMenu = new ToolStripMenuItem("New", null, new EventHandler(windowNewMenu_Click));
        ((ToolStripDropDownMenu)(windowMenu.DropDown)).ShowImageMargin = false;
        ((ToolStripDropDownMenu)(windowMenu.DropDown)).ShowCheckMargin = true;

        // Assign the ToolStripMenuItem that displays  
        // the list of child forms.
        ms.MdiWindowListItem = windowMenu;

        // Add the window ToolStripMenuItem to the MenuStrip.

        // Dock the MenuStrip to the top of the form.
        ms.Dock = DockStyle.Top;

        // The Form.MainMenuStrip property determines the merge target. 
        this.MainMenuStrip = ms;

        // Add the ToolStripPanels to the form in reverse order. 

        // Add the MenuStrip last. 
        // This is important for correct placement in the z-order. 

    // This event handler is invoked when  
    // the "New" ToolStripMenuItem is clicked.
    // It creates a new Form and sets its MdiParent  
    // property to the main form. 
    void windowNewMenu_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
        Form f = new Form();
        f.MdiParent = this;
        f.Text = "Form - " + this.MdiChildren.Length.ToString();

This example requires:

  • References to the System.Drawing and System.Windows.Forms assemblies.

For information about building this example from the command line for Visual Basic or Visual C#, see Building from the Command Line (Visual Basic) or Command-line Building With csc.exe. You can also build this example in Visual Studio by pasting the code into a new project. Also see How to: Compile and Run a Complete Windows Forms Code Example Using Visual Studio.

© 2015 Microsoft