Changing Window border on the fly

Posted on 1998-12-29
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-03
I have a parent window that displays a child window
when a menu option is chosen.
When the child window is displayed I would like to change
the parent window border so that the window could be
resized.  When the child window is removed I would then
return the window border to its original style.

I tried a SetWindowLong call (using a GWL_STYLE (sp?) parameter and a WM_THICKFRAME parameter) before displaying the child window, and another call before removing it.

The border didn't change when the child window was displayed.  It did change to the thick frame when I
removed the child window but the window could not
be resized.
Question by:cpirrita
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
LVL 20

Expert Comment

ID: 1417819
I'm not sure if you can set the border style on the fly. But how about this:
You could set the border style to always resizable. Then you could look at WM_WINDOWPOSCHANGING message, which with you can prevent windows from resizing your window if you don't like it.

Regards, Madshi.
LVL 15

Expert Comment

by:Tommy Hui
ID: 1417820
The other styles of the window is important as well. To change WS_THICKFRAME, you need to make sure the parent window does not have WS_OVERLAPPED or WS_OVERLAPPEDWINDOW styles (you should not create them with these styles) because WS_OVERLAPPED and WS_OVERLAPPED imply WS_THICKFRAME. Instead, use WS_POPUP | WS_SYSMENU | WS_CAPTION | WS_MINIMIZEBOX | WS_MAXIMIZEBOX | WS_THICKFRAME. You can remove WS_THICKFRAME initially if that's what you want.

Author Comment

ID: 1417821
sorry - I should have more fully stated I was adding the thickframe parameter in
addition to the existing parameters.  the actual call is:

       SetWindowLong(hDlg, GWL_STYLE,
                                       WS_THICKFRAME | WS_POPUP |  WS_VISIBLE |
                                       WS_CAPTION | WS_VSCROLL | WS_SYSMENU);

I remove the THICKFRAME parameter when I remove the window.
The window border only changes to a thick frame when I execute the call that doesn't have the THICKFRAME parameter (after 1st executing the call with the parameter).

i'll also look into the WINDOWPOSCHANGING msg but the above method works I
think that would look more 'cleaner' (plus I'm curious if it can be done)

NFR key for Veeam Agent for Linux

Veeam is happy to provide a free NFR license for one year.  It allows for the non‑production use and valid for five workstations and two servers. Veeam Agent for Linux is a simple backup tool for your Linux installations, both on‑premises and in the public cloud.


Expert Comment

ID: 1417822
In VB the BorderStyle property is only available at design-time. Attempting to change it at run-time causes a compilation error.

Then again, VB is pretty weak.
LVL 15

Expert Comment

ID: 1417823
Do something like this. It works fine.

 hWin=CreateWindowEx( ...

// Set thickframe
  LONG l=GetWindowLong(hWin,GWL_STYLE);

// Remove thickframe
  LONG l=GetWindowLong(hWin,GWL_STYLE);


Author Comment

ID: 1417824
my parent window is a dialog box created via a DialogBoxParam call, so I used the
hDlg paramater passed in rather than the return handle from a CreateWindowEx call.
when I added the following:

       lStyle = GetWindowLong(hDlg, GWL_STYLE);
       lStyle = lStyle || WS_THICKFRAME;
       SetWindowLong(hDlg, GWL_STYLE,  lStyle);

to create a thick frame on the parent the program froze and I could only kill it
via the task manager.  If I commented out the logical or operation then my program
remained operational (w/o altering the border style).  Is this something that cannot
be done to a Dialog Box?
LVL 15

Expert Comment

ID: 1417825
You should warning us about DialogBox (you said: parent window ...!)

Next,  you wrote:
       lStyle = lStyle || WS_THICKFRAME;
After this line lStyle will be equal 1.
Should be
     lStyle = lStyle | WS_THICKFRAME; // One vertical line

LVL 15

Expert Comment

ID: 1417826
In any case, I'm afraid, it's impossible for dialog box

Accepted Solution

zyqwert earned 800 total points
ID: 1417827
If you can change your dialog box so that it is initially resizable then we have a solution.
The plan is make the dialog box resource resizeable.
Then in WM_INITDIALOG, or thereabouts, make it not resizable using the code below.
Then you can toggle the state with your child window creation.

If the dialog box is created with a resizeable border then you can turn it on and off at will.  
Strangely, if it is created without a resizable border, you can't make it resizeable -- the DefWindowProc of WM_NCMOUSEMOVE, HTBOTTOM should cause the WM_SYSCOMMAND of SC_SIZE but it doesn't.

Here is the code to make the dialog resizeable:

LONG lStyle= GetWindowLong(h, GWL_STYLE);
SetWindowLong(h, GWL_STYLE, lStyle);
lStyle= GetWindowLong(h, GWL_EXSTYLE);
SetWindowLong(h, GWL_EXSTYLE, lStyle);
// Force an NCCALCSIZE:

To make it not resizeable, swap the setting and clearing of bits (x&=~m <--> x|=m)

Let me know if there is any problem.


Author Comment

ID: 1417828
thanks! That worked great.  I haven't played around with it much yet - I want to
reset the original height/width of the Dialog Box when the child window is removed.
I assume I can set the x/y/height/width values in the SetWindowPos to do this;
otherwise I'll use a MoveWindow call.  thanks again.

Featured Post

Get your Conversational Ransomware Defense e‑book

This e-book gives you an insight into the ransomware threat and reviews the fundamentals of top-notch ransomware preparedness and recovery. To help you protect yourself and your organization. The initial infection may be inevitable, so the best protection is to be fully prepared.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

This article surveys and compares options for encoding and decoding base64 data.  It includes source code in C++ as well as examples of how to use standard Windows API functions for these tasks. We'll look at the algorithms — how encoding and decodi…
As more and more people are shifting to the latest .Net frameworks, the windows presentation framework is gaining importance by the day. Many people are now turning to WPF controls to provide a rich user experience. I have been using WPF controls fo…
This is Part 3 in a 3-part series on Experts Exchange to discuss error handling in VBA code written for Excel. Part 1 of this series discussed basic error handling code using VBA. http://www.experts-exchange.com/videos/1478/Excel-Error-Handlin…
Have you created a query with information for a calendar? ... and then, abra-cadabra, the calendar is done?! I am going to show you how to make that happen. Visualize your data!  ... really see it To use the code to create a calendar from a q…

777 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question