Sunday, November 15, 2009

A basic header

In this post I'm adding a very simple header to the CrypSafe sample, as you can see from the picture. Graphically it is a simple gray gradient with some text printed with an embossed look. Despite of the sleek look, the implementation is quite simple, as you can see from reading the CTouchHeader class source code (see sample source below).

The header is implemented as a simple WTL header window. The WTL protocol for headers and footers is quite simple: the frame window sends an empty WM_SIZE message (both width and height are set to zero) to the header and footer signaling these to position themselves in the main frame client rectangle. The remaining space will be occupied by the child view window.

Implementing this protocol is quite simple: handle the WM_SIZE message and reposition the header at the top of the main frame:

void CTouchHeader::OnSize(UINT nType, CSize size)
if( == 0 && == 0)
CWindow wndParent(GetParent());
CRect rc;

rc.bottom = + m_cyHeader;

The m_cyHeader variable contains the height in pixels of the header. Now, you just need to paint the header with your favorite gradient. Painting the text with the embossed look is also a simple task: you just need to paint it twice in different colors, offsetting the second painting by one or two pixels down. You get the best effect by painting first with a darker color.

As of this implementation, you don't get a very smart header control: it just paints the text it is given. However, we can make this text change according to some application context just like when you switch views. In the sample code below, the header is always present between view switches and the CChildViewManager merely asks each CChildView that is brought into view to update the header text through the virtual SetupTouchHeader function.

Now that this is in place, we can add more features to the header and make it more useful for the whole UI...

Sample code: (345 Kb)


Soo said...

hi, is that possible to insert some control into the header area?

João Paulo Figueira said...

You are anticipating my next post... ;-) The answer is yes, of course! I will show how you can add a simple button to navigate back.

Soo said...

I start addict to WTL too...
Wait to see that...
Cheers :)