Delphi: converting rtf to plain text

I have some rtf stored in a database. At times, I only need the text and not the rft formatting. Here's the approach I tried to convert the rtf to plain text:

procedure TChronNoteMenu.GetText;
  var
    rtfEdit: TRichEdit;
    ss: TStringStream;
begin
  sText := ''; // class level public variable to contain the text
  ...
  sText := [Get rtf from database];
  // I have verified that sText at this point contains the expected rtf text
  if bPlainText then begin
    rtfEdit := TRichEdit.Create(nil);
    ss := TStringStream.Create;
    try
      ss.WriteString(sText);
      // ***** WHEN EXECUTING, FOLLOWING LINE CAUSES ERROR *****
      rtfEdit.Lines.LoadFromStream(ss); 
      sText := rtfEdit.Text;
    finally
      rtfEdit.free;
      ss.Free;
    end;
  end;
  ...
end;

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Does it matter here that the rtf is not divided into lines but is just a blob of rtf? If so how do I load it correctly?
Actual error message: EInvalidOperation: TPopupList Control has no parent window.
I'm not sure if this message is actually a result of this error or the result of something that fails later because of the failure here. Thanks in advance for your help.
EricTaylorAsked:
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SteveBayCommented:
I believe that your TRichEdit  depends upon a parent window to do it's work.

rtfEdit := TRichEdit.Create(Form1);
rtfEdit.Parent := Form1;
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EricTaylorAuthor Commented:
Thanks Steve. That seems to solve half the problem. (At least, hope it's half.) My code now looks like this:
procedure TChronNoteMenu.GetText;
  var
    rtfEdit: TRichEdit;
    ss: TStringStream;
begin
  sText := ''; // class level public variable to contain the text
  ...
  sText := [Get rtf from database];
  // I have verified that sText at this point contains the expected rtf text
  if bPlainText then begin
    rtfEdit := TRichEdit.CreateParented(application.MainFormHandle);
    rtfEdit.Visible := false;
    ss := TStringStream.Create;
    try
      ss.WriteString(sText);
      //   *****  AT THIS POINT, SS APPEARS TO HAVE NO CONTENT  *****
      //   *****  SO I GET EMPTY RESULT EVERY TIME   ***** 
      rtfEdit.Lines.LoadFromStream(ss);
      rtfEdit.PlainText := true;
      sText := rtfEdit.Text;
    finally
      rtfEdit.free;
      ss.Free;
    end;
  end;
  cdsFilterClear(cdsTextBlocks);
end;

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EricTaylorAuthor Commented:
oops... hit post too soon. So at this point, it doesn't appear that my rtf is loading to the stream... so I'm consistently getting an empty result. (But checked with the debugger and sText definitely has rtf content going in.
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EricTaylorAuthor Commented:
I appeared to have been wrong about where the problem was above ss.DataString does in fact show the appropriate rtf. So I'm suspecting that there is something wrong with sText := rtfEdit.Text;
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ThommyCommented:
I once did it like that using a memory stream...

sText:= sql.FieldByName('rtf').AsAnsiString;

//Write to a memory stream
aStream := TMemoryStream.Create;
aStream.Clear;
aStream.Write(PAnsiChar(sText)^, Length(sText));
aStream.Position := 0;

//Load stream into RichEdit
RichEdit1.PlainText := False;
RichEdit1.Lines.LoadFromStream(aStream);
stream.Free;

//Save as plain text
RichEdit1.PlainText:=true;
sText:=RichEdit1.Text;

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EricTaylorAuthor Commented:
I have tried two versions of getting text from rtf, one with a TStringStream and one with a TMemoryStream. In both cases, sText ends up empty.
procedure TChronNoteMenu.GetText;
  var
    rtfEdit: TRichEdit;
    ss: TStringStream;
begin
  sText := '';
  sRtf := '';
  ...
  sRtf := cdsTextBlocks.FieldByName('MacroText').AsString;
  // IN HAVE CONFIRMED THAT sRTF DOES CONTAIN THE RTF TEXT AS EXPECTED
  rtfEdit := TRichEdit.CreateParented(application.MainFormHandle);
  rtfEdit.Visible := false;
  ss := TStringStream.Create;
  try
    ss.WriteString(sRtf);
    showmessage(ss.DataString);
    // THE ABOVE CORRECTLY SHOWS THE FULL RTF
    rtfEdit.Lines.LoadFromStream(ss);
    rtfEdit.PlainText := true;
    sText := rtfEdit.Text;
    // sText IS ALWAYS EMPTY AT THIS POINT
    ....

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procedure TChronNoteMenu.GetText;
  var
    rtfEdit: TRichEdit;
    aStream: TMemoryStream;
begin
  sText := '';
  sRtf := '';
  ...
  sRtf := cdsTextBlocks.FieldByName('MacroText').AsString;
  // IN HAVE CONFIRMED THAT sRTF DOES CONTAIN THE RTF TEXT AS EXPECTED
  rtfEdit := TRichEdit.CreateParented(application.MainFormHandle);
  rtfEdit.Visible := false;
  aStream := TMemoryStream.Create;
  try
    aStream.Write(PAnsiChar(sRtf)^, Length(sRtf));
    rtfEdit.Lines.LoadFromStream(aStream);
    rtfEdit.PlainText := true;
    sText := rtfEdit.Text;
    showmessage(sText);
    // sText IS SIMILARLY EMPTY HERE
    ....

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SteveBayCommented:
Hmm... Could it be as simple as resetting the position of your stream?

    aStream.Write(PAnsiChar(sRtf)^, Length(sRtf));
    aStream.Position := 0; // << reset stream position
    rtfEdit.Lines.LoadFromStream(aStream);
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EricTaylorAuthor Commented:
might be. I'll try that. Working with streams is really new to me, so on this front, I'm a hacker...
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EricTaylorAuthor Commented:
Thanks Steve. And thanks to you too Thommy... though I couldn't get yours to quite work. (I think because I wasn't using TMemoryStream quite correctly; I found working the the TStringStream easier in this case. Much appreciate the help.
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