Introducing Infragistics Dock and Toolbar Manager Components
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by Brian Mains
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Infragistics Docking Control

Infragistics also comes with a docking manager, which manages which controls are docked in which reason.  This adds two properties that can be set for controls, which manager where they are docked in the application.  However, Infragistics gives docked controls the ability to be moved around the screen, in a very flexible way.  When clicking and dragging a docked control, several screen icons (the same screen icons that appear when moving Visual Studio Windows around) appear, allowing the user to dock the control in a wide array of layouts.  The tool windows also support the ability to pin windows, which disappear in the sidebar when unpinned and unfocused.

Controls now have a "Dock Controls" option that looks like the following:

Figure 10

This option controls where the control will be docked, namely in the left area.  You can dock multiple controls to one location.  When choosing the Sliding Group option for Child Pane Style, any controls docked at that area are shown in a sliding group, similar to the Office navigation pane, where one panel is shown at a time.  The left sidebar is setup as a tab group, which displays tabs at the bottom of the window.

Figure 11

Initially, when docking windows, they are not docked, but by simply dragging and dropping one on top of the other, they are combined into a multi-tab docked window.  To apply styling to the docked windows, select the smart tag for the docking manager, and select a theme to use.  I've selected as all possibilities the Office 2007 themes, which are illustrated above.  There are many options, using Office, Visual Studio, and other themes available.  When run, the docked windows can be pinned, as illustrated below:

Figure 12

In addition, when at runtime, it is possible to rearrange the windows into a variety of places. It can be bound on top, bottom, left, or right, against an existing docked window, or inside a docked window that appears stacked upon one another. I flipped the bottom image sideways because of its length, and as you can see, similar to the Visual Studio's Solution Explorer and Property Window.

Figure 13

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User Comments

Title: incomplete options appearing   
Name: Kay
Date: 2008-03-19 12:57:50 PM
After I drag the UltraToolbarsManager component on the Windows Form, I do not see three options. I can only see the "new Toolbar", while neither the "Show Ribbon" or the "Design MiniToolBar" are present. Is there any settings that need to be changed beforehand? thanks

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