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develop an active desktop control in c#

Posted on 2006-06-28
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Last Modified: 2008-02-07
Hi all experts,
i want to develop a nice thing that will be on the desktop (like an active desktop) something like this: http://www.tinnes.org.uk/desktopcalendar/about.htm
or this: http://www.xemico.com/adc/screenshots.html
and i don't have any clue where to start from (i want to use C# of course.)
any ideas?
Thanks Navot.
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Question by:navotvolk
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Expert Comment

by:SmithJW
ID: 17017300
Since you want to do this using c#, Active Desktop is the wrong method.

You should create a form, and set the background color as the transparency colour, then set the form to always be at the background. Finally whyn you add controls they will appear as if they are floating on your desktop.

I have used a similar approach on a little project that is available somewhere on my website (linked in my profile).
If you want a form template creating for this, post back, and i'll see what i can do!

Alternatively... you can get a handle to the desktop window, from which you can create a GDI bitmap to draw on. There are API functions to do all this, which i can list for you if you want to give it a try.
This method will give you freedom to control exactly what you want to draw, but really isnt worth the effort, and is much much harder than a transparent form.

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by:navotvolk
ID: 17018303
thanks for your answer,
i looked it your site and didnt found it.
can you send me the form template?
i tried to make a transperetn form before but the problem is it makes the text transperent two (and i want it to remain solid black)
did you handle it in your template?
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Accepted Solution

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SmithJW earned 750 total points
ID: 17018803
I have uploaded a sample with instructions:
http://smithjw.no-ip.com/TransparencyTemplate.zip

The basics of it are
set the transparency key to a known color
make transparent areas use that color
turn off the form border
et voila... thats all there is to it :)

this was built using visual studio 2005.
hope it helps :)
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Expert Comment

by:SmithJW
ID: 17018818
I almost forget... there are probly a few other bits and bobs needed to make the illusion complete, such as setting the form not to display a taskbar, and adding an area where you can allow the user to re-position the window. apart from that, it should be
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by:navotvolk
ID: 17019518
thanks i will check it on sunday and then i will accecpt the answer.
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