Chapter Six

The Modal Dialog and Windows Common Controls

Almost every Windows-based program uses a dialog window to interact with the user. The dialog might be a simple OK message box, or it might be a complex data entry form. Calling this powerful element a dialog "box" is an injustice. A dialog is truly a window that receives messages, that can be moved and closed, and that can even accept drawing instructions in its client area.

The two kinds of dialogs are modal and modeless. This chapter explores the most common type, the modal dialog. In the first of this chapter's two examples, you'll use all the familiar "old" controls, such as the edit control and the list box, inherited from Win16. In the second example, you'll use the Windows common controls, which Microsoft Windows 95 introduced. In Chapter 7 we'll take a look at the modeless dialog and the special-purpose Windows common dialogs for opening files, selecting fonts, and so forth. In Chapter 8 we'll examine ActiveX Controls. Then Chapter 9 discusses the new Internet Explorer control classes, introduced in MFC 6.0