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Controlling other programs thru vb5

Posted on 1998-10-05
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Last Modified: 2010-04-30
I want to read and then change the url a web page in an iexplorer window.  For example, if the vb5 program reads that ie4 is at www.disney.com, I want the vb5 program to change it and take me to www.mtv.com
In other words, I want to modify an external program's properties and manipulate its methods.  I know a little about api calls.
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Question by:Armandito
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Author Comment

by:Armandito
ID: 1438348
Edited text of question
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Expert Comment

by:abhinavm
ID: 1438349
You can do it very easily. goto menu project -> reference then select the application name you want to control if application name is not there you can't control that app. for example controlling MS word you need Microsoft word 8.0 object library.
 if it is present then select it and press OK.
now you can useobjects define in library. i will give you example of word. add this code in command click event.

Dim WordApp As Word.Application
set WordApp=new Word.Application
WordApp.Activate
WordApp.Documents.Open "DocName"
WordApp.Documents.Close
WordApp.Quit

This code will start MSWord then open document given in paramtere to open method. then close that document and quit word. you can do other stuff also with that document
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Accepted Solution

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Mirkwood earned 200 total points
ID: 1438350
You are lucky. Here is the code that works with IE3.
It searches the IE4 window and the editbox within the toolbar
then it retrieves the text and modifies the text

Private Declare Function FindWindow Lib "user32" Alias "FindWindowA" (ByVal lpClassName As String, ByVal lpWindowName As Long) As Long
Private Declare Function FindWindowEx Lib "user32" Alias "FindWindowExA" (ByVal hWnd1 As Long, ByVal hWnd2 As Long, ByVal lpsz1 As String, ByVal lpsz2 As String) As Long

Const WM_GETTEXT = &HD
Const WM_SETTEXT = &HC
Private Declare Function SendMessage Lib "user32" Alias "SendMessageA" (ByVal hwnd As Long, ByVal wMsg As Long, ByVal wParam As Long, lParam As Any) As Long
Private Declare Function SendMessageStr Lib "user32" Alias "SendMessageA" (ByVal hwnd As Long, ByVal wMsg As Long, ByVal wParam As Long, ByVal lParam As String) As Long

Private Sub Command1_Click()
    Dim hwndexpl As Long
    Dim hwndrebar As Long
    Dim hwndcomboex As Long
    Dim hwndcombo As Long
    Dim hwndsizerebar As Long
    Dim hwndedit As Long
    Dim editval As String
    'Find top level window of classs IEFrame with no caption
    hwndexpl = FindWindow("IEFrame", 0)
    hwndsizerebar = FindWindowEx(hwndexpl, 0, "SizableReBar", "")
    hwndrebar = FindWindowEx(hwndsizerebar, 0, "ReBarWindow32", "")
    hwndcomboex = FindWindowEx(hwndrebar, 0, "ComboBoxEx32", "")
    hwndcombo = FindWindowEx(hwndcomboex, 0, "ComboBox", "")
    hwndedit = FindWindowEx(hwndcombo, 0, "Edit", "")
    editval = String$(255, " ")
    Call SendMessageStr(hwndedit, WM_GETTEXT, 255, editval)
    editval = RTrim(editval)
    editval = Left(editval, Len(editval) - 1)
    If (editval = Text1.Text) Then
       Call SendMessageStr(hwndedit, WM_SETTEXT, 0, Text2.Text)
    End If
   
End Sub

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Author Comment

by:Armandito
ID: 1438351
Thanks Mirkwood.  
I tried the code, and it almost worked.  I had to tweak it a bit, though.  The RTrim function wasn't having any effect on editval, for some reason.  I replaced RTrim with a small routine that returns the what it should.  In the end, the program does put text2.text in the url address window.
The shortcoming of your answer is in that the browser does not take you there.  In other words, the program does detect if I am at www.disney.com, and the program changes the address to www.mtv.com, but it does not open www.mtv.com.  It just changes the text of the url window.  So your answer was great, but only half of what I need.
I tried for a few hours last night to make the program send a message that simulates an ENTER keypress (after having changed the url text).  I tried to use some of the API functions, but it didn't work.  Maybe I'm doing it wrong.  
I need more help.
Thanks!
Armandito
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Author Comment

by:Armandito
ID: 1438352
Thanks Mirkwood.  
I tried the code, and it almost worked.  I had to tweak it a bit, though.  The RTrim function wasn't having any effect on editval, for some reason.  I replaced RTrim with a small routine that returns the what it should.  In the end, the program does put text2.text in the url address window.
The shortcoming of your answer is in that the browser does not take you there.  In other words, the program does detect if I am at www.disney.com, and the program changes the address to www.mtv.com, but it does not open www.mtv.com.  It just changes the text of the url window.  So your answer was great, but only half of what I need.
I tried for a few hours last night to make the program send a message that simulates an ENTER keypress (after having changed the url text).  I tried to use some of the API functions, but it didn't work.  Maybe I'm doing it wrong.  
I need more help.
Thanks!
Armandito
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:Mirkwood
ID: 1438353
Do a setfocus before the sendkey

Declare Function SetFocus Lib "user32" Alias "SetFocus" (ByVal hwnd As Long) As Long

prevHwnd  = SetFocus (hwndedit)
Sendkeys here
SetFocus (prevHwnd)
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