Building Dynamic .NET Controls with Windows Forms
page 2 of 6
by Vishal Patil
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The Design

Create a Windows Form application using Visual Studio and add the following code.

Listing 1

public void CreateControls(string[]arrFields)
  int YPos = 0;
  int XPos = 0;
  int tabIndex = 0;
  int MaxCtrlWidth = GetMaxControlWidth(arrFields);
  for (int Count = 0; Count < arrFields.Length; Count++)
    YPos = (nudControls.Count * 25) + 32;
    // Field Name Label
    Label lblFieldName = new Label();
    lblFieldName.Location = new System.Drawing.Point(8, YPos);
    lblFieldName.Name = "lbl" + arrFields[Count];
    lblFieldName.Size = new System.Drawing.Size(MaxCtrlWidth, 22);
    lblFieldName.Text = arrFields[Count];
    // Set the Horizontol position for NumericUpDown control
    // Numeric updown
    NumericUpDown nudNum = new NumericUpDown();
    nudNum.Location = new System.Drawing.Point(XPos, YPos);
    nudNum.Name = "txt" + arrFields[Count];
    nudNum.Size = new System.Drawing.Size(48, 22);
    nudNum.TabIndex = ++tabIndex;
    // Set the Horizontol position for Checkbox control
    // checkbox
    CheckBox chk = new CheckBox();
    chk.Location = new System.Drawing.Point(XPos, YPos);
    chk.Name = "chk" + arrFields[Count];
    chk.Size = new System.Drawing.Size(18, 22);
    chk.TabIndex = ++tabIndex;
    chk.TabStop = false;
    // Add the new controls to this form
    nudControls.Add(arrFields[Count], nudNum);
  // Adjusts the screen size
  SizeToFit(YPos, XPos);

In the above code, the initial values are set for X, Y positions and for horizontal spaces between controls. All of the label Field Names are set by determining the maximum control width among all the label controls. Then iterating through the array of fields, Label, Numeric updown and checkbox controls are placed on the form by determining the X and Y Positions and the vertical and horizontal spaces between the controls. Once all the controls are placed on the form, the form is resized depending upon the X and Y positions used by the controls.

Listing 2

private int GetMaxControlWidth(string[]Fields)
  int mxmFieldWidth = 0;
  for (int count = 0; count < Fields.Length; count++)
    // lblName
    Label lblFieldName = new Label();
    lblFieldName.AutoSize = true;
    lblFieldName.Text = Fields[count];
    Graphics grap = lblFieldName.CreateGraphics();
    // Get the Size needed to accommodate the formatted Text.
    Size preferredSize = grap.MeasureString(lblFieldName.Text,
    if (count == 0)
      mxmFieldWidth = preferredSize.Width;
      if (preferredSize.Width > mxmFieldWidth)
        mxmFieldWidth = preferredSize.Width;
  return mxmFieldWidth;

Aim of the above code is to get the Maximum control width among all the field names' controls (Label control) and set this width to all the label controls. In the above code a label control is drawn. An auto size property is set to true and the Field Name is set to it. Once the Field name is set, control automatically resizes then uses the GDI graphics object to get the size needed to accommodate the formatted text. Then we compare the size of all the label controls and whichever is maximum we set it to all the label controls.

Listing 3

private void SizeToFit(int VertPos, int HoriPos)
  Size size = new Size(HoriPos + 25, VertPos + 70);
  this.ClientSize = size;

The above code is called after the dynamic controls were created. It receives Parameters VertPos and HoriPos (which are the last vertical and horizontal position of the last item added) and Rrsizes the form, adding some bottom and left spacing.

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User Comments

Title: good   
Name: kumar
Date: 2010-10-14 4:28:46 AM
Your concept is good, and give some realtime examples.
Title: ABCD   
Name: EFGH
Date: 2008-05-15 8:48:45 AM

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