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UltimateMenus

, 2 Dec 2004
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The ultimate menu solution for VB.NET users. Office2003 (XP Blue, XP OliveGreen, XP Silver and XP Classic) and many more.

Introduction

After l lost a lot of time finding a perfect menu solution for VB.NET, I decided to write one myself. This menu system is simply incredible. The user can customize almost everything. It's upon the user how he/she wants to use the menus. Each of the menu item can be formatted. Each of the menu item will have forty five properties to play with. How does that sound? Cool yeah! Well, better start using it.

How to use UltimateMenus menus

To use this class, simply create a menu structure in Form Designer as you would usually create a Menu. Once you are happy with the layout of your Menu, just follow the simple steps as outlined below:

  1. Click on [Save All].
  2. Solution Explorer-->References-->Add Reference-->UltimateMenus.dll.
  3. Expand [#Region " Windows Forms Designer generated code "].
  4. Press Ctrl+A.
  5. Press Ctrl+H.
  6. Type [System.Windows.Forms.MenuItem] in the [Find what:] combobox.
  7. Type [UltimateMenus.KunalMenuItem] in the [Replace with:] combobox.

    Note: The keywords are case sensitive. So type them carefully.

  8. Click [Replace All], then [Close].
  9. Click on [Save All] icon.
  10. Click on [Build --> Rebuild Solution].

Note: All steps are mandatory. They must be followed.

You will now have several new properties for each menu item, which can be accessed through the Properties window. These new properties have been assigned to the Appearance Category. If you add any new MenuItem, you will need to re-run the above steps.

Properties

  • BackColor

    Use this property to set the BackColor of the MenuItems. To select more than one MenuItem, click on the first one and then click on the last MenuItem while pressing the Shift Key.

  • CheckedMenuItemBackColor

    You can use either a tick mark or an icon to mention a checked MenuItem. Use this property to set the BackColor for the checked MenuItem’s indicator. Whether it is an icon or the tick mark.

  • CheckedMenuItemBorderColor

    You can use either a tick mark or an icon to mention a checked MenuItem. Use this property to set the BorderColor for the rectangle of the checked MenuItem’s indicator. Whether it is an icon or the tick mark.

  • CheckedMenuItemDisabledBackColor

    You can use either a tick mark or an icon to mention a checked MenuItem. Use this property to set the BackColor for the checked MenuItem’s indicator when the MenuItem is disabled. Whether it is an icon or the tick mark.

  • CheckedMenuItemIconShadowColor

    You can use either a tick mark or an icon to mention a checked MenuItem. Use this property to set the ShadowColor for the checked MenuItem’s indicator when the MenuItem indicator is an icon.

  • CheckedMenuItemIconStyle

    You can use either a tick mark or an icon to mention a checked MenuItem. Use this property to set the Style for the checked MenuItem’s indicator when the MenuItem indicator is an icon. It can be either of the following:

    When the mouse hovers over the MenuItem:

    • IconShadow: A shadow beneath the icon is automatically created.
    • IconBump: All the four sides of the icon will seem to be raised up.
    • IconEtched: The icon will have a 3D border around it.
    • IconFlat: A flat look will be given to the icon.
    • IconRaisedInner: A box will popup around the icon.
    • IconRaisedOuter: The left and bottom side of the icon will be raised up.
    • IconSunken: The icon will go down by all sides.
    • IconSunkenInner: The right and top side of the icon will set down.
    • IconSunkenOuter: Almost similar to IconRaisedInner.
    • IconNone: No effect will take place.
  • CheckedMenuItemImage

    Use this property to set the image for the checked MenuItem.

  • CheckedMenuItemStyle

    You can use either a tick mark or an icon to mention a checked MenuItem. Use this property to select the style of the indicator for the checked MenuItem. It can be either of the following:

    • CheckedItemDefault: The default style. It will draw a tick mark as indicator. It will automatically set itself based upon the SideBarStyle property for Office2003 look.
    • CheckedItemIcon: The indicator is an icon. Use CheckedMenuItemImage property to set the image for the checked MenuItem.
    • CheckedItemTickMark: The indicator is a tick mark. Use CheckedMenuItemTickMarkColor property to customize the tick mark.
  • CheckedMenuItemTickMarkColor

    Use this property to set the color of the tick mark when CheckedMenuItemStyle property is set to CheckedItemTickMark.

  • FillMenuBarItem

    Use this property to confirm that a MenuItem should be filled with a color, if it is a MenuBar MenuItem.

  • Font

    The font of the MenuItems.

  • ForeColor

    The normal fore color of the MenuItems.

  • HiLightFont

    The font of the MenuItem when the mouse hovers over the MenuItem.

  • HiLightForeColor

    The normal fore color of the MenuItem when the mouse hovers over the MenuItem.

  • HiLightScheme

    The highlight scheme for the MenuItem. It can be either of the following:

    • DefaultScheme: The default style. The highlight scheme is as same as that of VS.NET or Office XP. It is also automatically set for Office 2003 look when the SideBarStyle property is set to Office2003 Styles.
    • CustomScheme: You can set the back color and the border color of the highlight selection rectangle. Use HiLiteColor and HiLiteBorderColor properties accordingly for that.
    • PreDefinedSchemes: use some predefined color schemes for highlighting. Use the PreDefinedHiLiteColors property for that.
    • DefaultGradient: Use the default gradient mode for highlighting. It starts with CornFlowerBlue and ends with White color.
    • CustomGradient: Customize the gradient colors for Highlighting. Use the HiLiteGradientColor1, HiLiteGradientColor2, HiLiteGradientStyle, and HiLiteBorderColor properties for customizing the gradient effect.
    • PredefinedGradient: use some predefined gradient color schemes for highlighting. Use the PreDefinedHiLiteGradientColors property for that.
  • HiLiteBorderColor

    The border color of the highlight rectangle.

  • HiLiteColor

    The back color of the highlight rectangle.

  • HiLiteGradientColor1

    The starting color for the gradient effect for highlighting when HiLightScheme property is set to CustomGradient.

  • HiLiteGradientColor2

    The ending color for the gradient effect for highlighting when HiLightScheme property is set to CustomGradient.

  • HiLiteGradientStyle

    The gradient mode for highlighting of MenuItems. It can be either of the following:

    • Horizontal: The gradient colors are drawn in a horizontal direction.
    • Vertical: The gradient colors are drawn in a vertical direction.
    • ForwardDiagonal: The gradient colors are drawn in a forward diagonal direction.
    • BackwardDiagonal: The gradient colors are drawn in a backward diagonal direction.
  • IconHiLiteStyle

    When the mouse hovers over a MenuItem, the behavior of the MenuBarImage can be controlled. It can be either of the following:

    • IconShadow: A shadow beneath the icon is automatically created.
    • IconBump: All the four sides of the icon will seem to be raised up.
    • IconEtched: The icon will have a 3D border around it.
    • IconFlat: A flat look will be given to the icon.
    • IconRaisedInner: A box will popup around the icon.
    • IconRaisedOuter: The left and bottom side of the icon will be raised up.
    • IconSunken: The icon will go down by all sides.
    • IconSunkenInner: The right and top side of the icon will set down.
    • IconSunkenOuter: Almost similar to IconRaisedInner.
    • IconNone: No effect will take place.
  • IconShadowColor

    The shadow color of the icon when IconHiLiteStyle property is set to IconShadow.

  • Image

    The image or icon for the sidebar of the MenuItem.

  • MakeCheckedMenuItemTransparent

    If the supplied image for the checked MenuItem has a nontransparent and colored background, then set this property to True to make the image transparent.

  • MakeTransparentIcon

    If the supplied image for the sidebar of the MenuItem has a nontransparent and colored background, then set this property to True to make the image transparent.

  • MenuBarItemBorderColor

    The border color for the MenuBar MenuItem rectangle.

  • MenuBarItemFillColor

    The back color of the MenuBar MenuItem rectangle.

  • MenuBarItemFillingStyle

    The filling style of the MenuBar MenuItem. It can be either of the following:

       
    • FillColor: Fill the rectangle with a single color.
    • FillGradient: Use gradient colors for filling. Use MenuBarItemGradientColor1, MenuBarItemGradientColor2 properties for that.
  • MenuBarItemGradientColor1

    The starting color for the gradient effect of the MenuBar MenuItem.

  • MenuBarItemGradientColor2

    The ending color for the gradient effect of the MenuBar MenuItem.

  • MenuBarItemGradientStyle

    The gradient mode for the MenuBar MenuItem. It can be either of the following:

    • Horizontal: The gradient colors are drawn in a horizontal direction.
    • Vertical: The gradient colors are drawn in a vertical direction.
    • ForwardDiagonal: The gradient colors are drawn in a forward diagonal direction.
    • BackwardDiagonal: The gradient colors are drawn in a backward diagonal direction.
  • PreDefinedHiLiteColors

    Some predefined color sets for highlighting of MenuItems. Works when HiLightScheme is set to PreDefinedSchemes. It can be either of the following:

    • Khaki
    • LightBlue
    • LightPink
    • LightGrey
    • DarkSeaGreen
    • YellowGreen
    • LightViolet
    • LightGreen
  • PreDefinedHiLiteGradientColors

    Some predefined gradient color sets for highlighting of MenuItems. Works when HiLightScheme is set to PredefinedGradient. It can be either of the following:

    • BrownWhite
    • GreenWhite
    • OrangeWhite
    • PurpleWhite
  • PreDefinedSideBarGradientColor

    Some predefined gradient color sets for the sidebar of MenuItems. Works when SideBarStyle is set to PredefinedGradient. It can be either of the following:

    • BrickRedWhiteSmoke
    • DarkKhakiWhite
    • MetalicWhite
    • MetalGreenWhiteSmoke
    • FadeBrownWhite
    • ShineyBlueYellow
  • ShowBorderAroundMenuBar

    Use this property to determine if to show a border around the MenuBar MenuItem. True to show and False to not show.

  • ShowHiLiteOverSideBar

    Set it to True to show the highlight rectangle over the sidebar of the MenuItem also. Otherwise set it to False.

  • ShowShadowUnderMenuBar

    Set it to True to show a shadow under the MenuItem if it is a MenuBar MenuItem. Otherwise set it to False.

  • SideBarColor

    The color of the sidebar of the MenuItem. Works when SideBarStyle is set to Standard.

  • SideBarStartColor

    The starting color for the gradient effect of the sidebar of the MenuItem when SideBarStyle property is set to CustomGradient.

  • SideBarEndColor

    The ending color for the gradient effect of the sidebar of the MenuItem when SideBarStyle property is set to CustomGradient.

  • SideBarGradientStyle

    The gradient mode for the sidebar of the MenuItem. It can be either of the following:

    • Horizontal: The gradient colors are drawn in a horizontal direction.
    • Vertical: The gradient colors are drawn in a vertical direction.
    • ForwardDiagonal: The gradient colors are drawn in a forward diagonal direction.
    • BackwardDiagonal: The gradient colors are drawn in a backward diagonal direction.
  • SideBarStyle

    The sidebar style of the sidebar of the MenuItem. It can be either of the following:

    • Standard: the standard mode. You can set the sidebar color.
    • DefaultColor: The default color set. Looks like VS.NET IDE Menus.
    • DefaultGradient: The default gradient color set. Starts with CornFlowerBlue and ends with White color in horizontal mode.
    • CustomGradient: The custom gradient mode. You can specify the start and end color of the gradient. Use SideBarStartColor and SideBarEndColor properties for that.
    • PredefinedGradient: Use the PreDefinedSideBarGradientColor property to set the predefined gradient color set for the sidebar.
    • Office2003Blue: The Office 2003 look in WinXP Blue theme. If you choose this, then do not change other color properties; they will automatically reset them for the look.
    • Office2003OliveGreen: The Office 2003 look in WinXP Olive-Green theme. If you choose this, then do not change other color properties; they will automatically reset them for the look.
    • Office2003Silver: The Office 2003 look in WinXP Silver theme. If you choose this, then do not change other color properties; they will automatically reset them for the look.
    • Office2003Classic: The Office 2003 look in WinXP Classic theme. If you choose this, then do not change other color properties; they will automatically reset them for the look.
  • TickMarkStyle

    The tick mark style of the TickMark when the indicator for a checked MenuItem (CheckedMenuItemStyle property) is a tick mark (CheckedItemTickMark property). It can be either of the following:

    • Shadow: When the mouse hovers over the checked MenuItem a shadow is displayed under the tick mark.
    • Normal: A normal tick mark is always displayed.

    If you find any problem or bug when using UltimateMenus, please contact me at my e-mail ID.

    License

    This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

    A list of licenses authors might use can be found here

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    About the Author

    Kunal Mukherjee
    Web Developer
    India India
    Currently I am going through B.Sc.IT (5th Sem) from Manipal University. Programming is my hobby. I do it all the free time I can extract from my daily life. I have been programming since from last 1 year. I have done some small projects including some application level programms.

    Comments and Discussions

     
    QuestionNicely done! How about placing it on a toolbar now? PinmemberElecen9-Feb-06 13:57 
    GeneralIcons PinmemberBrazilian.Engineer10-Dec-05 13:16 
    QuestionAwesome Control...but... Pinmemberlgbjr22-Oct-05 3:07 
    GeneralFantastic - thanks ! But ... Pinmemberjdkl19-Oct-05 8:25 
    QuestionNotifyIcon Problem PinmemberPaszt20-Sep-05 20:42 
    Generalmenus in jscript Pinmemberaditi171021-Apr-05 0:56 
    GeneralBug with localizable forms Pinmemberaermec19-Apr-05 23:56 
    Great job (I use the updated version of your control)!
    But I found a bug in localizable forms: when I change the language, the menubar doesn't resize itself in case of labels shorter or longer than original (I use a language switch without restart the form).
    Is it possible to resolve this bug?
    Thank
    GeneralMassive Menu Man Pinmembersmartg17-Mar-05 10:25 
    GeneralRe: Massive Menu Man PinmemberKunal Mukherjee18-Mar-05 7:01 
    GeneralRe: Massive Menu Man Pinmembersmartg20-Mar-05 9:46 

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