ACC97: Migrating from Data Outline Control to TreeView Control

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SUMMARY

The Data Outline control is not included with the Microsoft Office 97 Developer Edition (ODE) as it is in the Microsoft Access Developer's Toolkit versions 2.0 and 7.0. The TreeView control enables you to display a hierarchical list of items, and you can use it in your Microsoft Access 97 database as a replacement for the Data Outline control.

This article discusses some differences you may encounter when you use the TreeView control in place of the Data Outline control. It covers the following topics:
  • How to Fill Levels with Data in the TreeView Control
  • How to Link Nodes in the TreeView Control
  • How to Associate a TreeView Node with a Form in Your Database
  • Distributing the TreeView Control with a Run-time Application
  • Differences in Event Models Between TreeView and Data Outline Controls
  • TreeView Control Performance
  • Limitations of the TreeView Control vs. the Data Outline Control
NOTE: In order to make it easier for you to upgrade a database that uses the Data Outline control in Microsoft Access 97, you can obtain version 1.2 of the Data Outline control free from Microsoft's download services. Version 1.2 of the Data Outline control works with Microsoft Access 97 databases. However, an updated Data Outline control will not be available in future releases, and it is strongly recommended that you migrate to a different control, such as the TreeView control, for all new development. For information about downloading version 1.2 of the Data Outline control, please see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
162359 ACC97: Access 97 Data Outline ActiveX Control Available in Download Center
This article assumes that you are familiar with Visual Basic for Applications and with creating Microsoft Access applications using the programming tools provided with Microsoft Access. For more information about Visual Basic for Applications, please refer to the "Building Applications with Microsoft Access 97" manual.

MORE INFORMATION

Both the TreeView control and the Data Outline control can display hierarchical data. However, the ways in which you populate the controls with data are quite different. For example, many features of the Data Outline control that you set in its property sheet must be set with Visual Basic code in the TreeView control.

A key element in the TreeView control is the Node object in the Nodes collection. You use the Nodes collection to create hierarchical levels in the TreeView control.

How to Fill Levels with Data in the TreeView Control

You must use Visual Basic code to fill a level in the TreeView control with data. In most cases, you open a RecordSet object and loop through the records to create Nodes in the TreeView control. The following example populates a TreeView control with a list of Customers in the Northwind sample database.
  1. Start Microsoft Access and open the sample database Northwind.mdb
  2. Create a new form not based on any table or query in Design view.
  3. On the Insert menu, click ActiveX Control.
  4. In the Insert ActiveX Control dialog box, select Microsoft TreeView Control, version 5.0, and then click OK.
  5. Set the following properties for the TreeView control:
    Name: axTreeView
    Width: 3"
    Height: 2"
  6. Set the form's OnLoad property to the following event procedure:
          Private Sub Form_Load()
             Dim DB As Database, RS As RecordSet
             Set DB = CurrentDb
    
             ' Open a Recordset and loop through it to fill the TreeView
             ' control.
             Set RS = DB.OpenRecordset("Customers", dbOpenForwardOnly)
             Do Until RS.EOF
                Me!axTreeView.Nodes.Add , , RS!CustomerID, RS!CompanyName
                RS.MoveNext
             Loop
             RS.Close
          End Sub
    					
  7. Save the form as frmCustList and switch to Form view. Note that the TreeView control fills with a list of Customer names.

How to Link Nodes in the TreeView Control

Each level in the Data Outline control has a LinkMasterFields property that enables you to link each level in the form to the level above it. In the TreeView control, you use the Key property of the Node object to link one node to another.

You can set the Key property when you use the Add method of the Nodes collection to add a level to the TreeView control. Then you reference that key when you add new nodes to the TreeView control, and that is how different levels are linked together. Following are some important tips about using the Key property:
  • The value of each Key property in the TreeView control must be unique.

    For example, the value of the Key property for a node in the second level of your control cannot duplicate the value of any keys you created anywhere else in the control. If you duplicate a key anywhere in your control, you receive the following trappable error:
    Run-time error '35602':
    Key is not unique in collection
  • The Key property must contain some non-numeric data. If you use the primary key field of a table as the key for a node, and if that field is numeric, you can easily concatenate some text before or after the value to satisfy this requirement. If your key does not contain non- numeric data, you receive the following trappable error:
    Run-time error '35603':
    Invalid key
  • The Key property is case-sensitive. For example, "ALFKI" is a different key than "alfki." You can easily resolve this case sensitivity by using the StrConv() function to explicitly convert all of your keys to the same case.
The following example builds on the form you created in the previous section and creates three levels in the TreeView control showing customers, orders, and order details. Note in the example how the letter "t" and the StrConv() function are used when creating the second level to satisfy the requirements of the Key property.
  1. Start Microsoft Access and open the sample database Northwind.mdb.
  2. Open the frmCustList form in Design view.
  3. Change the event procedure in the form's OnLoad property to the following:
          Private Sub Form_Load()
             Dim DB As Database, RS As RecordSet
             Dim strOrderKey As String
             Set DB = CurrentDb
    
             ' Fill Level 1 using CustomerID as the Key property.
             Set RS = DB.OpenRecordset("Customers", dbOpenForwardOnly)
             Do Until RS.EOF
                Me!axTreeView.Nodes.Add , , RS!CustomerID, RS!CompanyName
                RS.MoveNext
             Loop
             RS.Close
    
             ' Fill Level 2.
             Set RS = DB.OpenRecordset("Orders", dbOpenForwardOnly)
             Do Until RS.EOF
                ' Link to Level 1 by referencing the CustomerID key and set
                ' the node as a child node of Level 1. Use "t" and the
                ' StrConv() function in the new Key property for Level 2,
                ' because OrderID is a numeric field.
                strOrderKey = StrConv("t" & RS!OrderID, vbLowerCase)
                Me!axTreeView.Nodes.Add RS!CustomerID, tvwChild, strOrderKey, _
                   RS!OrderID & "   " & RS!OrderDate
                RS.MoveNext
             Loop
             RS.Close
    
             ' Fill Level 3.
             Set RS = DB.OpenRecordset("Order Details", dbOpenForwardOnly)
             Do Until RS.EOF
                ' Link to Level 2 by referencing the strOrderKey key and set
                ' the node as a child node of Level 2.
                strOrderKey = StrConv("t" & RS!OrderID, vbLowerCase)
                Me!axTreeView.Nodes.Add strOrderKey, tvwChild, RS!ProductID, _
                   RS!ProductID & "   " & Format(RS!UnitPrice, "Currency")
                RS.MoveNext
             Loop
             RS.Close
          End Sub
    					
  4. Save the form and switch to Form view. Double-click a customer's name to expand one level and see the order numbers and dates for that customer; double-click an order number to see the product number and unit price for each item in the order.

How to Associate a TreeView Node with a Form in Your Database

Each level in the Data Outline control has a FormName property that you can set to associate a particular form with a level in the control. In the TreeView control, you can use the NodeClick event to reference the currently selected node, and then use the Key property of the node in the OpenForm method's Where condition to open a form to the correct record. For example:
   Private Sub axTreeView_NodeClick(ByVal Node As Object)
      DoCmd.OpenForm "Customers", , , "[CustomerID] = '" & Node.Key & "'"
   End Sub
				
You can also add the same functionality to a button on your form, as the following example illustrates.

The following example builds on the form you created in the previous sections. It uses the length of the Key value for the selected node to determine whether to open the Customers, Orders, or Products form.
  1. Start Microsoft Access and open the sample database Northwind.mdb.
  2. Open the frmCustList form in Design view.
  3. Add a Command button to the form and set the following properties:
    Name: cmdOpenForm
    Caption: View Details
    OnClick: [Event Procedure]
  4. Set the OnClick property of the command button to the following event procedure:
          Private Sub cmdOpenForm_Click()
             Dim CurNode As Node
             Set CurNode = Me!axTreeView.SelectedItem
             On Error GoTo cmdOpenForm_Error
             ' Evaluate the Key value of the selected node.
             Select Case Len(CurNode.Key)
                ' All CustomerID keys are 5 characters long.
                Case 5
                   DoCmd.OpenForm "Customers", , , "[CustomerID] = '" & _
                      CurNode.Key & "'"
                ' All OrderID keys are 6 characters long.
                Case 6
                   DoCmd.OpenForm "Orders", , , "[OrderID] = " & Mid _
                      (CurNode.Key, 2)
                ' Anything else must be an Order Detail record.
                Case Is > 6
                   ' Extract the ProductID from the node key to use in the
                   ' Where condition when you open the Products form.
                   Dim i As Integer
                   i = InStr(CurNode.Key, "p")
                   DoCmd.OpenForm "Products", , , "[ProductID] = " & Mid _
                      (CurNode.Key, i + 1)
             End Select
             Exit Sub
          cmdOpenForm_Error:
             Select Case Err
                ' If error is because nothing is selected in TreeView.
                Case 91
                   MsgBox "Please select an item in the TreeView control."
                Case Else
                   MsgBox "Error: " & Err & vbCr & Err.Description
             End Select
             Exit Sub
          End Sub
    					
  5. Save the form and switch to Form view. Select any node on any level in the TreeView control, and then click the View Details button to open the associated form to the correct record.
If an editable field on the form that is opened contains data that is displayed in your TreeView control, you can write code to update the Text property of the selected TreeView node if data changes on the form. For example, if your TreeView control displays the CompanyName field from the Customers table, you can add code to the AfterUpdate event of the CompanyName field on the Customers form to update your TreeView node:
Forms!MyForm!MyTreeView.SelectedItem.Text = Forms!Customers!CompanyName
				
This method is faster than clearing and refilling the entire TreeView control when only one record has changed.

Also, if a user can change a field that you are using in the Key property of a node in your TreeView control, you must update that Key property. You only have to update the parent node, and the change is automatically propagated to all child nodes:
Forms!MyForm!MyTreeView.SelectedItem.Key = Forms!Customers!CustomerID
				

Distributing the TreeView Control with a Run-time Application

The TreeView control is contained in the Comctl32.ocx file, which Microsoft Office 97 Developer Edition (ODE) sets up in your Windows System folder. You must include this file when you redistribute an application that contains the TreeView control.

When you include Comctl32.ocx in the List Of Files box in the Setup Wizard, the Wizard searches for that file's dependency file, Comctl32.dep. The dependency file tells the Setup Wizard what other support files need to be included with the ActiveX control. If you have Comctl32.dep on your hard drive, you will notice that the Setup Wizard automatically includes Comcat.dll in the List Of Files box when you add Comctl32.ocx; Comcat.dll is a required support file for Comctl32.ocx. If the Setup Wizard cannot locate the Comctl32.dep file, you must manually add Comcat.dll to the list of files you redistribute with your application.

Differences in Event Models Between TreeView and Data Outline Controls

The Data Outline and TreeView controls each support different event models. As a result, you may have to rewrite portions of your code when you migrate from the Data Outline control to the TreeView control. The following table compares the events in the two controls and identifies where no corresponding event is available.
   Data Outline Control Event   TreeView Control Event
   ---------------------------------------------------
   AfterCollapse                Collapse
   AfterExpand                  Expand
   AfterFormClose               <none>
   AfterFormOpen                <none>
   AfterFormUpdate              <none>
   AfterMove                    <none>
   AfterRefresh                 <none>
   AfterRequery                 <none>
   AfterSelChange               NodeClick
   AfterStartup                 <none>
   DoKeyPress                   KeyPress
   DoRowClick                   <none>  (Closest events are Click and
                                         MouseDown)
   DoRowDblClick                <none>  (Closest event is DblClick)
   Enter                        Enter
   ErrorEvent                   <none>
   Exit                         Exit
   FailCollapse                 <none>
   FailExpand                   <none>
   FailFormOpen                 <none>
   FailFormUpdate               <none>
   FailMove                     <none>
   FailSelChange                <none>
   GotFocus                     GotFocus
   KeyDown                      KeyDown
   KeyUp                        KeyUp
   LostFocus                    LostFocus
   MouseDblDown                 <none>  (Closest event is DblClick)
   MouseDown                    MouseDown
   MouseUp                      MouseUp
   RequestCollapse              <none>  (Closest event is Collapse)
   RequestExpand                <none>  (Closest event is Expand)
   RequestFormOpen              <none>
   RequestFormUpdate            <none>
   RequestHelp                  <none>
   RequestMove                  <none>
   RequestSelChange             <none>
   Updated                      Updated
   <none>                       AfterLabelEdit
   <none>                       BeforeLabelEdit
   <none>                       MouseMove
   <none>                       OLECompleteDrag
   <none>                       OLEDragDrop
   <none>                       OLEDragOver
   <none>                       OLEGiveFeedback
   <none>                       OLESetData
   <none>                       OLEStartDrag
				

TreeView Control Performance

Filling TreeView nodes from an array is faster than filling them from a Recordset object. However, it is common to use the TreeView control to display data from a table or a query, so Recordset objects are used frequently. You can improve the speed with which your TreeView fills with data by using the DbOpenForwardOnly argument of the OpenRecordset method, as shown in the examples in this article.

If you open and loop through Recordset objects to fill TreeView nodes with data, it may take some time to open a form or to display TreeView control data when you are working with large recordsets. In contrast, the Data Outline control automatically binded to your data, which made it faster to see data from large tables or queries.

Limitations of the TreeView Control vs. the Data Outline Control

The Data Outline control and the TreeView control are very different from one another in many respects. Because the TreeView control can display hierarchical data, it is the best choice among the ODE controls to replace your Data Outline control; however, there are some features of the Data Outline control that the TreeView control cannot emulate. For example:
  • The TreeView control can only display one-to-one or one-to-many relationships between the levels in the control; the Data Outline control permits many-to-one relationships as well in its levels.
  • You cannot set font properties for each level of data in the TreeView control; however, you can select a single font for all levels in the control.
  • There is no DisplayWidths property in the TreeView control as there is in the Data Outline control, which can make it awkward to display two or more items of data in a single node. For example, if your TreeView node displays CustomerID & " " & CompanyName, the alignment of the data will be inconsistent if the size of the CustomerID field varies. You might see a node that looks like this:
          1   ABC Company
          27   A Second Company
          4   XYZ Company
          427   Northwind Traders
    						
    You can compensate for this limitation by writing code to test the width of each field, and then pad with an appropriate number of spaces to properly align the columns.

REFERENCES

For more information about using the TreeView control in Microsoft Access 97, search the Help Index for "TreeView control."

Properties

Article ID: 162523 - Last Review: January 19, 2007 - Revision: 3.3
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Access 97 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Office 97 Developer Edition
Keywords: 
kbfaq kbhowto kbprogramming kbusage KB162523
Retired KB Content Disclaimer
This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.

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