Tag Archives: Column Freezing

5 cool features you won’t want to miss

There are so much improvements, new features and capabilities that made possible in our new 2007 R1 release, for instances SmartWebResources, file cache server, new datasource control, new UI styles and more. With all these new stuff, sometimes it’s easy to miss certain small features, but in fact very useful ones.

Ok let’s just go to the points. In the following, you can find the list of top 5 cool things that you won’t want to miss in our 2007 R1 release.

  1. Enable SmartWebResources and deploy with confidence.
    We have received tremendous praises from developers that they loved this feature very much. Why? This feature saved their valuable time by enabling them to perform deployment with just xcopy — no more scripts and images folder copying or IIS headaches. Unbelievable, but true!
    Here are some useful links to get you started with SmartWebResources:
    How-to: Configure SmartWebResources in a web application
    Features and benefits introduced by SmartWebResources™
    How does SmartWebResources™ work
  2. Loved our new UI and styles? Then try our new DefaultStyle.
    DefaultStyle is a new feature in WebGrid, WebCombo and WebInput. It enables these components to use modern UI styles automatically – without the need to load layout. You can enable them by simply setting a property.
    Here are some useful links to get you started with DefaultStyle:
    How-to: Enable Default Style for existing instance of WebGrid
    Cleaner and reduced page output through built-in default style
    UseDefaultStyle property (server-side reference)
  3. Data binding made easy with our new-born ISDataSource control.
    It’s inevitable that many developers missed the DataSet binding feature in VS2005 since Microsoft decided to introduce datasource control in ASP.NET 2 and hence remove the ability to bind to DataSet in designtime. While the new datasource control concept is better (since it offers higher reusability and easier implementation through declarative markup), ASP.NET Team did not manage to come up with multi-table datasource control and hence causing databinding a bit more complex in VS2005.
    ISDataSource brings back the good old days DataSet databinding ability to VS2005 in the form of datasource control. So you got the best of both worlds — ability to bind to DataSet and still have the power and benefits of datasource control.
    Here are some useful links to get you started with ISDataSource:
    Walkthrough: Binding to data using ISDataSource.NET
    ISDataSource Architecture
    Walkthrough: Binding to Hierarchical data using ISDataSource.NET
  4. Want to keep important information visible in your Grid view? Then freeze it.
    Column freezing is always the most wanted feature in every data presentation application. Our experiences with column freezing has started since the DOS era where we used Clipper to build column freezing Grid. We absolutely understand how users expect the column freezing behavior in today’s Web era. The implementation is truly complicated, but we have made it very easy for you to enable it. With some property changes, you can now enjoy column freezing using WebGrid.NET Enterprise 5.0.
    Here are some useful links to get you started with Column Freezing feature:
    How-to: Enable column freezing and configure initial settings
    How-to: Allow user to freeze/unfreeze at runtime
    Column Freezing Overview
    LiveFreeze™ behaviors and other notes
  5. Keep your web user interface stylish with our pixel-perfect Office 2007 styles for WebDesktop components.
    Many vendors claimed that they supported Office 2007 styles, and yet many developers told us that they were not satisfied with the components they were using before, because the Office 2007 styles that the other vendors provided are still far away from the real Office 2007 styles.
    Our Office 2007 UI and styles are different. We have the closest styles and UI implementation to the real Office 2007 styles, because we take care on every single pixel of the appearance — even the smallest factors like padding, margin and border width. The good news is our 2007 styles rendered perfectly and consistently in both IE and Mozilla browsers.
    Here are some useful links to get you started with our new Office 2007 styles:
    WebDesktopManager Office 2007 Style
    The complete WebUI Studio.NET® 2007 components in the fashion of Office 2007 Style
    WebTab Office 2007 Style
    Using Component Designer 2.0 to apply predefined style

Have a nice day and happy developing with WebUI Studio.NET 2007 R1! Enjoy!

Column Freezing feature in WebGrid.NET Enterprise 5.0

Columns freezing is one of the most frequently requested feature in these few years since initial version of WebGrid. Column freezing in web-based Grid is also one of the most difficult to be implemented feature, and in fact almost impossible due to the nature of HTML table. For years we have been asked with “is it possible to have column freezing feature in WebGrid”? Today I will give some shed of light for the answer.

If you “googling” for freezing column technique in html, you will find several different techniques to do column locking. Two of the most popular techniques are:

  1. Using CSS “expression” style to force the column’s and cell’s left and top position so they are not scrolled. This technique however requires many “hacky tricks” to the element structure, and unfortunately can be used in IE only. Note that “expression” is IE’s proprietary style.
  2. Breaking the main table into two sub tables inside one DIV container. I have seen several html-based Grid that used this technique. This approach workes well in some basic scenarios, but unfortunately has to break many features and DOM API. For instance, if you used to loop the cells using: for (var i=0; i<row.cells.length; i++) — now you can’t do this anymore because technically the frozen columns are in one table that appear in the left side, while the other columns are in the other table that appear in the right side.

Although above solutions can be applied to “ad hoc table implemention”, both of them did not lead to a reliable, rock solid, robust and cross-browser column freezing implementation that work well with DOM API as well as other existing features.

I am excited to say that we have finally been successful in inventing a new technique that work well with DOM API and full support for Mozilla browsers. This new technique which is named LiveFreeze would be the most significant new feature in WebGrid.NET Enterprise 5.0 (out of hundreds of new features) – and is the first original implementation that able to simulate Microsoft Excel’s popular column freezing behavior.

To give you a better picture, let’s take a look at the following screenshot that I take from one of the sample included in 2007 R1.

Column Freezing

In the above screenshot, notice on the first four columns (marked within the red box). These four columns are the active frozen columns, and will remain visible in the Grid’s view regardless of horizontal scrolling.

The good thing is this column freezing feature will work perfectly in conjunction with other existing features, such as grouping, sorting, filtering, column moving and resizing, keyboard navigation and many more. There are about six powerful sub-features that related to column freezing. I will share about them in my future posts. Stay tuned!

All the best,