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Tab order

Posted on 2016-07-28
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Last Modified: 2016-07-28
I have a form with a lot of controls, including panels.  I can't get my tab order correct, even though I'm setting all the TabIndex values correctly, as far as I can tell.   Also, it seems like controls within a panel can have their own order?  I tried using the View/Tab Order menu item, but that gives me a bunch of numbers that make no sense to me.  See image.

How get I set the tab order correctly?  It is maybe better/easier to do at run time?

 View - Tab Order
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Question by:HLRosenberger
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16 Comments
 
LVL 70

Expert Comment

by:Éric Moreau
ID: 41733284
that's lot of controls!

you normally click the first control, the the second one, then the 3rd, .... that will set the tab order but seeing the number you have, it will be a pane!

I use the 3rd party tool named mz-tools (http://mztools.com/). it has a nice/better tab order utility
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733289
A pain.  I agree!  What are those numbers?  63.1, 63.1.1.193, etc?
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733291
I installed it.  Just briefly - how do I use once installed?
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733296
I see this:

tabs
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Expert Comment

by:sarabande
ID: 41733304
you may open the .rc file with a text editor (choose open with... in visual studio).

then search your form and bring all the controls you see into the right order. the tab order only is determined by the order the controls are placed in the .rc file.

Sara
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Expert Comment

by:Éric Moreau
ID: 41733314
there is a button named Automatic. if you click on it, it will do its best to reorder your controls.
and you can always use the 2 arrows to modify the ordering
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733410
but I don't understand the numbers.  What so large?  Why decimal places?  I was expected to just see the tabindex property values.
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Expert Comment

by:Éric Moreau
ID: 41733428
this is the winforms designer!

the . represents level. i see that you have a panel containing tabs containing group containing panels ...
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733515
correct.  I don't see how to change the order using MZTools?  All it allows me to do is navigate the list???
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LVL 70

Expert Comment

by:Éric Moreau
ID: 41733605
as I wrote before, the "automatic" button at the top will try to reorder all your controls based on the container object and their location. Once you have done this, if any are misplaced, you can use the 2 arrows (on the left of the automatic button) to fine-tune the ordering
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733629
Yes, I did automatic, and that did a good job. However, if I look at the TabIndex property, they are all set to 1.  How does this thing work?   Also, they are two textboxes  I want to make last in the tab order.   I cant move it by itself I suppose, because it's on a panel.  I can move it's parent panel, but only so far.  Seems like I can only move it to the "end" of it's parent panel.  Does that make sense?  If I want to move it to the very end of the tab order for the form, I need to move it off it's panel, I suppose.
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Expert Comment

by:Éric Moreau
ID: 41733639
>>if I look at the TabIndex property, they are all set to 1.  

If you run the application and tab through the control, are they in the correct order?

>>Also, they are two textboxes  I want to make last in the tab order.  

Click on one of the textbox and use the arrow to move it down. Repeat for the second control.

>>I cant move it by itself I suppose, because it's on a panel.  

You won't be able to move them outside the scope of the panel for sure.
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733702
yes, the Auto button did a good job.   At runtime, they are in the correct order.  But I don't understand how/why?   How can that be when all the TabIndex properties are set to 1?

And correct.  I can't more outside the panel.   But I thought the tab order on a windows form could be set independently of the parent container?
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Accepted Solution

by:
Éric Moreau earned 2000 total points
ID: 41733734
>>How can that be when all the TabIndex properties are set to 1?

I am not experiencing that behavior. So I can't really tell!

>>But I thought the tab order on a windows form could be set independently of the parent container?

You could try to set the TabIndex property to 99 manually from the property window of the control.
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Author Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733746
well, it's works just fine.  I just don't get how, when all the TabIndex properties are set to 1.

Thanks!
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Author Closing Comment

by:HLRosenberger
ID: 41733747
thanks.
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