activex control for obtaining system info

Posted on 2006-11-09
Last Modified: 2010-04-23
Maybe one already exists - I'm looking for an activex control that could be run from a web site that would pull back asset information, environment/configuration, etc from the device.
I have some wmi code that does this in a vbscript, but am being asked for an activex difficult would this be/
Question by:sirbounty
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Expert Comment

ID: 17908578
can you not just wrap it up in a dll ?
LVL 67

Author Comment

ID: 17908638
What do you mean?
Writing my own dll and/or activex control would be something I'd need a kick start on... I'm afraid I've not had much experience there...hopefully that doesn't make it impossible...?
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 17915904
What's your development environment?

.NET provides Web controls as opposed to true ActiveX, which under the 2.0 framework would require security policies and whatnot to be set on the client machine in order to allow any sending of information over the wire (can be handled via MSI), which is a big ol' pain in the butt for most users. Since this doesn't sound like an intranet app, so I doubt your client would accept that.

Older versions (pre-2003) of visual studio provide ActiveX templates. VS6 might be the safest bet, if that's available to you. Translating from VBScript to VB ought to be a breeze. Once the OCX has been built, you need to insert the an html tag that embeds the control in your page.

Here's more info on using ActiveX in .NET and in pre-.NET:

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LVL 67

Author Comment

ID: 17915960
I'm using .net 2005
It may be an impossibility, as I understand security will be tight.
The company is allowing an external company to access a intranet site by opening a couple of ports in the firewall, so access will be quite limited.
I do have access to vb6 as well, if that makes it easier (though I'm not real proficient in creating an OCX either. :(

Sound 'doable' at this point, or should I abandon all hopes?
LVL 13

Accepted Solution

AngryBinary earned 400 total points
ID: 17916259
It is doable. VS 6 has support for OCX development. I've never developed one before, but if after looking over that tutorial at, it doesn't appear very tricky.

If you are working in .NET 2005, you cannot develop an ActiveX control. I have developed custom controls in .NET that work LIKE activeX control, and it was pretty simple until it came to deployment. Adding the control to the page was a piece of cake, but getting it would throw exceptions when I tried to chat with a web service, and eventually I wound up having to create an additional security policy installer (which is much easier than it sounds... you set up the security policy in your .NET config, and do a single right click to export the settings to your installer package) for users to download and install.

If ALL the control must do is gather environment information, so long as the .NET methods to do so fall in the set of allowed permissions for the Internet Trust Security Zone, then it will be a friendly, easy thing to develop, and the information you pull can be gathered via javascript calls to public properties in the control.

LVL 67

Author Comment

ID: 17937499
But you're saying it would be simpler/easier to do this in vb6?
I think I can pull from my current wmi scripting and should be able to pull that into vb okay.  I can't get to that site from here, but will check it out from home.
LVL 67

Author Comment

ID: 17962755
A lot easier than I thought it would be...perfect!

One final question, if you don't mind - I'm storing my data in UserControl.SysData
I believe the users will need to grant that the control be able to run in their browser (I did), but I'm wondering how difficult it will be to pull back that property on the other side of the house?

No biggie if you don't answer, but if you have an idea at least, let me know and I can easily open a new thread on it...thanx again!

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