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Build an AJAX Content Management System with Visual WebGUI: Creating a Framework : Page 3

Flexible software systems require a foundation that supplies the basic system services that's easy for developers to use, yet powerful enough to support complex and flexible systems—in other words, a framework.


Registering and Configuring Startup Forms

The WTWorkplaceController handles the plumbing between the calling and called modules. In the example Form1 file, you can see examples with Workplaces and Modules. Form 1 has two IWTWorkplaces. Into the first one it loads an IWTModule (Dashboard) that acts as a menu where the menu items launch various sample modules, either in the same Workplace, or in the right-hand workplace. You must set Form1 as the startup form for the VWG project.

In VWG, you can designate more than one form as a start point for an application; each one is considered a different application. Each form can have an associated name using the .wgx extension, which can differ from the actual name of the form.

To configure the start points, first build the project, and then open the Project Properties dialog, and select the Registration tab (Registration is a special tab that appears only for Visual WebGUI projects, as shown in Figure 2). If you do not see the Registration tab, you need to enable Visual WebGUI for the project (see the first article in this series for more information).

Figure 2. Application Configuration: You can set several different forms as application entry points. You configure these in the Registration tab of a Visual WebGUI Project.

Figure 3. Startup Form for Visual Studio: Set the Start Action to "Specific Page," and then choose the form where you want the application to start in Visual Studio.

In the Registration section, Applications table, you can configure various starting points for the solution. As Figure 2 shows, the top button lets you select a form defined in the solution, and register it as an Application (a start point). You can unregister Applications with Delete or rename them with the bottom button. That last button is the way you change the associated application name for a form. For example, you may want to name your form frmHumanResources.frm, but want to access it as HumanResources.wgx. You can do this by changing the Application name for the frmHumanResources.frm.

While you can start the application with any form when it is deployed on the web server, and you access the application through a browser, when you start it from within Visual Studio, you, must still specify a single startup web page. You do this in Project properties, in the Web section. Set the Start Action to "Specific Page" and enter the application name of one of the forms you registered as VWG applications in the Registration section (see Figure 3).

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