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Advanced Text Editor with Ruler

, 20 Mar 2008 CPOL
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Extending RichTextBox with ruler and much more


About two years ago I was creating a project for university. It was a complex of five programs that were related to testing (checking knowledge I mean). One of them contained a text editor. But unfortunately, I didn't know how to do that, that's why it was very simple. So, after these two years, I decided to rewrite my program in C# .NET (initially, it was written in VB.NET) and create a new powerful text editor. You can see part of it here.


I spent a lot of time(!) searching the Internet for controls like this, but the best ones are shareware and others did not fit my needs. So, what does this control have? I tried to make it look like Microsoft Word and I think that there are some similarities. The ruler lets you change the following: left and right margins, left indent, hanging indent and right indent. You also can disable margins (their values are set to 1). You can see how it looks in the picture above.

Also, you can add tabs by clicking on the control with the left mouse button. But it is allowed only inside the area bounded by margins. If you want to remove a tab, just drag it off from the control.

The editor lets you use lists, underline styles, advanced char styles (you can create your own links, that are not words starting with "http://" or even "www"), OLE functionality is also available. I want to thank Oscar Londoño for his article Inserting Images into a RichTextBox Control (The OLE Way). It helped me a lot to deal with OLE. This project contains his code.

Using the Code

You can use the code according to the CPOL.

Projects are created as Windows Applications, but you can easily convert them into *.dll or just embed code into your project.

Unfortunately, I removed Visual Studio 2005, so, sorry but I can't create and upload a Visual Studio 2005 project. But you can import all required files into a Visual Studio 2005 project without any problems. However, note that Visual Studio 2008 added some new namespaces (like LINQ) that Visual Studio 2005 does not "understand". Just remove them. That's all. You are ready.

Points of Interest

One thing that shocked me is that Microsoft has released RichTextBox 6.0! (It is distributed with Microsoft Office 2007) but... with one exception. There is no documentation about its features. All that I've found is a list of added functions. You can find it here. There are also descriptions for all released versions of RichTextBox.


  • 7 January 2008: Initial release
  • 16 January 2008: Projects for Visual Studio 2005 and 2008 posted instead of standalone control.
  • 26 January 2008: Posted completed AdvancedTextEditor project. It is available for Visual Studio 2005 and Visual Studio 2008.
  • 10 February 2008: Fixed PrintDialog bug. It didn't receive focus when shown. Now it's OK. Thanks to Chris Schucker for bug report and recommendations.
  • 22 February 2008: Added new functionality (full text justification, underline styles and colors and other)
  • 24 February 2008: Fixed bug with conversion from millimeter to pixel and vice versa Thanks to Chris Schucker. Also corrected bug which caused incorrect display of the indents.
  • 19 March 2008: Version 2.0 released. A lot of changes including lists, OLE, underline styles, etc.


I understand that I am not able to include everything into the control, that's why you can freely add something useful or change code to fit your needs. But, please inform me about that, just email me at It's just to let anyone use an upgraded (and corrected) version of that control. Of course, advisors will be mentioned.


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Aleksei Karimov

Kazakstan Kazakstan
Currently I am studying at East Kazakhstan State Technical University. My future occupation is engineer-programmer.

I use Visual Basic, C#, Delphi and a little C++. Also I am interested in using SQL and Perl.

Comments and Discussions

Questionuse this in MVC4 Pin
Member 11403184, 29-Jan-15 8:10
memberMember 1140318429-Jan-15 8:10 
QuestionGreat control Pin
Wrangly, 9-Oct-13 8:14
memberWrangly9-Oct-13 8:14 
QuestionAppearance Modification Pin
Member 10198037, 9-Aug-13 8:42
memberMember 101980379-Aug-13 8:42 
AnswerRe: Appearance Modification Pin
Member 11372840, 26-Mar-15 7:52
memberMember 1137284026-Mar-15 7:52 
GeneralFabulous Pin
Member 7986691, 31-Mar-13 3:31
memberMember 798669131-Mar-13 3:31 
GeneralMy vote of 5 Pin
sa3dcom, 18-Oct-12 2:26
membersa3dcom18-Oct-12 2:26 
GeneralMy vote of 5 Pin
rvp717y, 25-Aug-12 11:22
memberrvp717y25-Aug-12 11:22 
QuestionAbout the IOleObject Interface Pin
Zac Greve, 17-May-12 9:24
memberZac Greve17-May-12 9:24 
Generalcvgb Pin
Member 8543044, 5-Jan-12 23:12
memberMember 85430445-Jan-12 23:12 
QuestionProblem with adding multiple instance of Advanced Text Editor to a form [modified] Pin
Kondamuru, 15-Sep-11 12:25
memberKondamuru15-Sep-11 12:25 
QuestionHeader and Footer Pin
Member 7948286, 23-May-11 18:02
memberMember 794828623-May-11 18:02 
Generalvb code Pin
Member 1755149, 22-Mar-11 10:02
memberMember 175514922-Mar-11 10:02 
GeneralTable... Pin
Amer_3mh, 6-Dec-10 1:19
memberAmer_3mh6-Dec-10 1:19 
GeneralRe: Table... Pin
Aleksei Karimov, 6-Dec-10 5:41
memberAleksei Karimov6-Dec-10 5:41 
GeneralRe: Table... Pin
Amer_3mh, 6-Dec-10 6:21
memberAmer_3mh6-Dec-10 6:21 
GeneralRe: Table... Pin
Aleksei Karimov, 10-Dec-10 5:50
memberAleksei Karimov10-Dec-10 5:50 
Generalcan't we add coding support Pin
nethsu, 4-Oct-10 1:00
membernethsu4-Oct-10 1:00 
GeneralRe: can't we add coding support Pin
Aleksei Karimov, 5-Oct-10 21:31
memberAleksei Karimov5-Oct-10 21:31 
Generalwow! you are a genius! Pin
zyccld, 14-Mar-10 7:48
memberzyccld14-Mar-10 7:48 
it's the best richtextbox i've seen!

GeneralRe: wow! you are a genius! Pin
Aleksei Krassovskikh, 14-Mar-10 9:55
memberAleksei Krassovskikh14-Mar-10 9:55 
GeneralRefresh OLE object Pin
marekpr, 4-Mar-10 21:01
membermarekpr4-Mar-10 21:01 
GeneralRe: Refresh OLE object Pin
Aleksei Krassovskikh, 4-Mar-10 21:50
memberAleksei Krassovskikh4-Mar-10 21:50 
GeneralAdvanced Text Editor with Ruler right to left Pin
nyt1972, 2-Mar-10 20:28
membernyt19722-Mar-10 20:28 
GeneralRe: Advanced Text Editor with Ruler right to left Pin
Aleksei Krassovskikh, 2-Mar-10 20:56
memberAleksei Krassovskikh2-Mar-10 20:56 
GeneralRe: Advanced Text Editor with Ruler right to left Pin
nyt1972, 3-Mar-10 0:14
membernyt19723-Mar-10 0:14 

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