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Thread: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

  1. #1

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    Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I'm just curious about what people use add-ins for (the VB6 IDE's add-ins).

    Here's the functions I use them for:

    • No VBW (deletes the VBW file when closing a project).
    • Set Code Window Width (a fairly new one ... expands the width of the code window if it's the first time it's been opened).
    • Set the IDE's DPI awareness with an API call.
    • Editing resources (I use the one that comes with VB6).

    I don't necessarily always keep the add-ins loaded for that functionality, but I do some.

    Again, I'm more interested in the functionality you get out of add-in(s) than the actual add-in(s).

    ---------------------------------------------

    ADDED: (Ones I find interesting so far.)

    • Adding/removing line numbers.
    • Right-click to get callers.
    • List dead procedures.
    • List unused variables.
    • Fast build/compile.
    • Clear immediate.
    • Count lines of code & comments.
    • Review/change TabIndex.

    Others that'd help me:

    • Right-click and go to "Type" declarations. (Done, and in CodeBank)
    Last edited by Elroy; Sep 25th, 2022 at 09:18 AM.
    Any software I post in these forums written by me is provided “AS IS” without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, and permission is hereby granted, free of charge and without restriction, to any person obtaining a copy. Please understand that I’ve been programming since the mid-1970s and still have some of that code. My contemporary VB6 project is approaching 1,000 modules. In addition, I have a “VB6 random code folder” that is overflowing. I’ve been at this long enough to truly not know with absolute certainty from whence every single line of my code has come, with much of it coming from programmers under my employ who signed intellectual property transfers. I have not deliberately attempted to remove any licenses and/or attributions from any software. If someone finds that I have inadvertently done so, I sincerely apologize, and, upon notice and reasonable proof, will re-attach those licenses and/or attributions. To all, peace and happiness.

  2. #2
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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    3rd party plugins such as mz tools / vb watch2 and others you install it through setup.exe and through addins you can enable disable them

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I use three

    - mouse wheel fix from ms

    - classview from Patric van de groot
    https://www.vbforums.com/showthread....-Addin-for-vb6

    The classview also has a nice find all feature I added from another

    - fast build addin - allows you to set default output file name and does not prompt you every compile, also has capability to run post build commands and a couple other odds and ends like showing debug tooltips as hex numbers

    read me and source here: https://github.com/dzzie/addins/tree/master/FastBuild

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I use the TAB function, which can be switched between the code!

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Resource Editor, which I allow to load every IDE run.

    On demand I'll load and use a code profiler add-in which injects telemetry code, compiles, and runs the program. When the program ends it calls the related analyzer app to display the statistics alongside source statements.

    I've pretty much abandoned all others as fluff that can cause crashes and loss of hours of work.

  6. #6
    PowerPoster Arnoutdv's Avatar
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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I have 3 AddIns enabled

    MZTools 3:
    - Cleaning up dead procedures and unused variables
    - Adding/Removing line numbers
    - Procedure templates for error handler (using a shortcut key)
    - Sorting procedures in a module (class, form etc)

    Callers AddIn:
    - Right mouse click to get the callees of a method or property

    CodeHelp IDE Extender:
    - Tabbed MDI interface
    - Mousewheel support

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    PowerPoster SamOscarBrown's Avatar
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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Y'all got a GOOD link to download MZTools 3.0? All I find are ads wanting junk downloaded, or at MZTools.com, their not-free versions 8.

    EDIT: NEVER MIND....finally found it at WayBack

    EDIT 2: BUT....now am having difficulty adding it as an ADD-IN. What's the procedure? Tried regsvr32 MSADDNDR.DLL and got an error. (Apologize for my ignorance)

    EDIT 3: When I ran the executable (MZTools3.0 download), it failed to complete because of an issue with an existing MSADDNDR.DLL. So, then I tried to Register it (the existing MSADDNDR.DLL file), but the error said there was an issue with the DLL:

    Attachment 185812

    Excuse me...you all can ignore this post....I found that I had to have NO VB6 projects running in order to install MZTools 3.0 (that's why MSADDNDR.DLL was not able to be overwritten).

    Got MZTools 3.0 loaded now....Now to see all its capabilities.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by SamOscarBrown; Sep 20th, 2022 at 10:15 AM.
    Sam I am (as well as Confused at times).

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    The only Add-in I use is Make Standard DLL from Dansoft. The advantage of a standard DLL is that it does not have to be registered. The downside is that all calls to the DLL have to be defined like API calls.

    J.A. Coutts

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Add and remove line numbers - I should post code for that in the code bank even though everyone has this already.
    Mousewheel fix
    and some very-custom language and security resource maintenance stuff

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I use Smart Indenter often.

    I only load MZTools on demand when I need it, because it takes a long time to load on Windows 10 (10 seconds or so), making starting VB6 interolerable.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by jpbro View Post
    I only load MZTools on demand when I need it, because it takes a long time to load on Windows 10 (10 seconds or so), making starting VB6 interolerable.
    Don't have that experience on W10 with MZTools 3.1218

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Looks like I have 3.1209, so maybe that's the problem. I'll try to track down the newer version and see if it performs better.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    i use
    1.Smart Indenter
    2.button to close all open ide windows (own addon)
    3.button to clear & open the Imediate window. (own addon)
    4.add a menu to a tool bar and then have apps i use often in a drop down in the IDE (own addon)
    5.I also made a control adder addin that can add usercontrols or ocx files or class files from a library etc. (own addon)
    6.a rightclick codewindow addon to insert text or functions etc (own addon)
    7. made addon that adds a right click to the resource file so i can set an app to open it rather that the default resource editor (own addon)

    Attachment 185816

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Best I could find was 3.0.1212 of MZTools, and unfortunately, it's still slow at startup for me

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    PowerPoster SamOscarBrown's Avatar
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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    @jpbro....WHAT is slow at startup? VB6? I downloaded SOME version of MZTools 3 (can't find the #) from WayBack and my VB6 starts up just as rapidly as it used to....I don't see any delay.

    Sammi
    Sam I am (as well as Confused at times).

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    @Sam - The delay is from the time the IDE window appears to the time I can start working (opening a file or typing or anything) - the whole IDE is frozen for almost 20 seconds (just timed it now). Once the MZTools toolbar appears, I can interact with the IDE. No idea why, but if I load MZTools after starting up the IDE, it's toolbar appears almost instantly.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Actually it's even weirder - I can't do anything except move the mouse pointer. Clicking taskbar icons does nothing, trying to switch tasks with Alt+Tab does nothing - at least not until the MZTools toolbar appears, then everything is back to normal.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by SamOscarBrown View Post
    @jpbro....WHAT is slow at startup? VB6? I downloaded SOME version of MZTools 3 (can't find the #) from WayBack and my VB6 starts up just as rapidly as it used to....I don't see any delay.

    Sammi
    delay is caused by os and project size.
    mine is slow at start but dont care

  19. #19

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Slow Add-In loading:

    This is why I write (or find) Add-Ins that are very specific to the task I'd like to do.

    IMHO, the behemoth do-it-all Add-Ins are just too bloated, and are possibly going to crash my IDE at some critical moment.

    Smaller ones, it's easy to "think through" all the code and get comfortable with them. And what's the problem with having several?
    Any software I post in these forums written by me is provided “AS IS” without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, and permission is hereby granted, free of charge and without restriction, to any person obtaining a copy. Please understand that I’ve been programming since the mid-1970s and still have some of that code. My contemporary VB6 project is approaching 1,000 modules. In addition, I have a “VB6 random code folder” that is overflowing. I’ve been at this long enough to truly not know with absolute certainty from whence every single line of my code has come, with much of it coming from programmers under my employ who signed intellectual property transfers. I have not deliberately attempted to remove any licenses and/or attributions from any software. If someone finds that I have inadvertently done so, I sincerely apologize, and, upon notice and reasonable proof, will re-attach those licenses and/or attributions. To all, peace and happiness.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by k_zeon View Post
    i use
    1.Smart Indenter
    2.button to close all open ide windows (own addon)
    3.button to clear & open the Imediate window. (own addon)
    4.add a menu to a tool bar and then have apps i use often in a drop down in the IDE (own addon)
    5.I also made a control adder addin that can add usercontrols or ocx files or class files from a library etc. (own addon)
    6.a rightclick codewindow addon to insert text or functions etc (own addon)
    7. made addon that adds a right click to the resource file so i can set an app to open it rather that the default resource editor (own addon)
    interesting plugins.
    could you share some
    Thank you

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by yokesee View Post
    interesting plugins.
    could you share some
    Thank you
    which ones you interested in.? pm me and i can reply

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    CodeHelp IDE extender for the tabbed interface
    MZtools 3.0, the older free version for the amazing suite of extra functionality that it provides
    VbAdvance for the very useful compile button

    RubberDuck is only enabled when I have finished the functionality of my program and I am tidying it up.
    By the power invested in me, all the threads I start are Niya and Olaf free zones - no arguing about the benefits of VB6 over .NET here please. Happiness must reign.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by jpbro View Post
    I only load MZTools on demand when I need it, because it takes a long time to load on Windows 10 (10 seconds or so), making starting VB6 interolerable.
    FYI - I don't have that problem at all on the two Win10 machines I operate.
    By the power invested in me, all the threads I start are Niya and Olaf free zones - no arguing about the benefits of VB6 over .NET here please. Happiness must reign.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by yereverluvinuncleber View Post
    FYI - I don't have that problem at all on the two Win10 machines I operate.
    It looks like I am alone in the universe. I haven't spent too much time trying to figure out why, but it's even more strange since it ha been this way since I got a new computer and did a fresh install of VB6 & all my tooling add-ins as a first step before installing anything else. It's hard to imagine a software conflict since everything was pretty clean when it was first installed.

    Anyway, it's not that big a deal to load MZ Tools as needed, and since it loads quickly when loaded manually after VB6 startup, I've become accustomed to doing it that way.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by jpbro View Post
    It looks like I am alone in the universe. I haven't spent too much time trying to figure out why, but it's even more strange since it ha been this way since I got a new computer and did a fresh install of VB6 & all my tooling add-ins as a first step before installing anything else. It's hard to imagine a software conflict since everything was pretty clean when it was first installed.

    Anyway, it's not that big a deal to load MZ Tools as needed, and since it loads quickly when loaded manually after VB6 startup, I've become accustomed to doing it that way.
    When I was exploring MZ-Tools, I had that problem. Also, I didn't really find that much functionality that I'd use on a regular basis, so I didn't see the need. Also, I just don't like all that clutter.

    And RubberDuck was even worse. I took one look at that thing, turned around and never looked back.
    Any software I post in these forums written by me is provided “AS IS” without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, and permission is hereby granted, free of charge and without restriction, to any person obtaining a copy. Please understand that I’ve been programming since the mid-1970s and still have some of that code. My contemporary VB6 project is approaching 1,000 modules. In addition, I have a “VB6 random code folder” that is overflowing. I’ve been at this long enough to truly not know with absolute certainty from whence every single line of my code has come, with much of it coming from programmers under my employ who signed intellectual property transfers. I have not deliberately attempted to remove any licenses and/or attributions from any software. If someone finds that I have inadvertently done so, I sincerely apologize, and, upon notice and reasonable proof, will re-attach those licenses and/or attributions. To all, peace and happiness.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Rubberduck is a really useful tool when you want to release your spaghetti and malformed code to the world. However, it is slow to operate on a cooking-style laptop with a less than stellar CPU.

    It also slowed down the IDE as a whole so I only use it just prior to the point when I have to reveal my travesty to the masses.
    By the power invested in me, all the threads I start are Niya and Olaf free zones - no arguing about the benefits of VB6 over .NET here please. Happiness must reign.

  27. #27
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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Which version of MZ-Tools is stalling IDE load?

    I'm using version 3.0 and only problem I had is with custom shortcuts registration sometimes when an IDE is frozen and second is IDE instance is loaded.

    I'm using MouseWheelFix and MZ-Tools 3.0 add-ins only now that its possible to retrieve VBE reference without an additional add-in.

    cheers,
    </wqw>

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    [QUOTE=wqweto;5580874]I'm using MouseWheelFix/QUOTE]

    So this adds mouse wheel support for just the IDE? Any way to add mouse wheel support to controls in a project? I'm thinking grid controls and that kind of thing.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Pretty off topic question, and it has been answered many times.

    Subclass the controls, trap the scrollwheel messages (WM_MOUSEWHEEL) and translate them to things the controls do respond to (WM_VSCROLL, etc.). Search for threads here giving copy/paste examples for specific controls.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by Elroy View Post
    When I was exploring MZ-Tools, I had that problem. Also, I didn't really find that much functionality that I'd use on a regular basis, so I didn't see the need. Also, I just don't like all that clutter.

    And RubberDuck was even worse. I took one look at that thing, turned around and never looked back.
    Glad to know I'm not the only one! I had the same experience with RubberDuck - tried it once, but it was so slow that I just uninstalled it and moved on.

    Here's the MZ-Tools functionality that I like:

    • Review source code - it find some stupid mistakes, and makes sure I clean up some unused variables after refactoring.
    • Statistics - I like looking at how many lines of code I've written or removed from time-to-time. I also peek at my Comment % to make sure I remember to write some documentation periodically.
    • Project Group Search - this is probably the one I use the most. It's nice to be able to search across an entire project group.
    • Add/Remove Line #s - I use this one a lot too, should be self explanatory.
    • Assign Keyboard Shortcuts - I've assigned Ctrl+K to comment the current selection, and Ctrl+Shift+K to uncomment the current selection. IMHO that's hard to live without!
    • Review TabIndex Property - Good to make sure you have all the TabIndex values of your UI elements in order.
    • Add Module/ErrorHandler Template Code - This one is good to save some typing and to help enforce a certain standard of code for


    Outside of the above I don't use much else, but I do quite like those features.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by wqweto View Post
    Which version of MZ-Tools is stalling IDE load?

    I'm using version 3.0 and only problem I had is with custom shortcuts registration sometimes when an IDE is frozen and second is IDE instance is loaded.
    I'm only using 3.0 here too. I can't explain why it is so slow at startup only with MZ-tools enabled to load at startup. Only thing markedly different about my newest dev machine vs. my previous ones is that this is the first one that has AMD based chipset. I can't imagine it goes that far down, though the fact that I can't click *anything* until the MZ-Tools toolbar appears has me a bit suspicious.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by jpbro View Post
    I'm only using 3.0 here too...that this is the first one that has AMD based chipset.
    Two of my older budget laptops were AMD chipsets and I did not have that issue with MZ-tools. What I did have was two slow laptops in general despite being supposedly 2.7ghz (turbo) quad cores they felt like 1.6ghz Intel in general operation. Except when gaming when the GPU turned out to be quite good at its job.

    My point? having AMD at the core can cause things to run differently and perhaps it is internal multi-threading thing but not in my limited experience.
    By the power invested in me, all the threads I start are Niya and Olaf free zones - no arguing about the benefits of VB6 over .NET here please. Happiness must reign.

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I have some add-ins that made using VB6 more comfortable to me, getting rid of annoying things:

    1) This one is only necessary if you have the IDE manifested for Common Controls (to draw the controls with themes, aka Visual Styles): LaVolpe fix for color palette.

    2) Delete the *.vbw file when opening a project (never see a .vbw file again, unless you download a project that has it, and you'll see the file until you open the project)

    3) Don't see anymore the MS Sans Serif, that's from the 90, we are in 2022.
    Change the default font to something more modern, automatically.

    4) Sometimes you need to reposition controls, to move a group of controls all the same shift. That's very cumbersome to be done by hand. Not something needed every day, but when you are designing a form, it is not uncommon.
    Move a group of controls using this add-in.

    Those are the add-ins that I have always running. And one to rebuild OCXs with a desired version but that one is quite specific, not needed for everybody.

    And others two that I sometimes install/use are MZ-Tools, but I only use it when I'm curious how many LOC I already wrote in a project (once in a while).
    And Project Examiner, from time to time to do something, not very often.

    Quote Originally Posted by dilettante View Post
    I've pretty much abandoned all others as fluff that can cause crashes and loss of hours of work.
    Exactly, I had problems with add-ins in the past. One problem is that the clipboard gets erased when the IDE closes with some add-ins, other problem the IDE crashing in some situations. So I am also reluctant to install add-ins, and more if I don't need them.

    I can "guarantee" that the 4 add-ins that I listed work file in that regard.

  34. #34

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Ohhh, I hadn't seen (nor even thought of) an Add-In to get rid of the MS Sans Serif font on new forms. That's a brilliant idea.

    I did once write an Add-In to go through all the forms & controls of an existing project and swap them out with Microsoft Sans Serif. I used that one because it's characters are virtually identical to MS Sans Serif. For new stuff though, I tend to use Segoe UI.
    Any software I post in these forums written by me is provided “AS IS” without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, and permission is hereby granted, free of charge and without restriction, to any person obtaining a copy. Please understand that I’ve been programming since the mid-1970s and still have some of that code. My contemporary VB6 project is approaching 1,000 modules. In addition, I have a “VB6 random code folder” that is overflowing. I’ve been at this long enough to truly not know with absolute certainty from whence every single line of my code has come, with much of it coming from programmers under my employ who signed intellectual property transfers. I have not deliberately attempted to remove any licenses and/or attributions from any software. If someone finds that I have inadvertently done so, I sincerely apologize, and, upon notice and reasonable proof, will re-attach those licenses and/or attributions. To all, peace and happiness.

  35. #35

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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eduardo- View Post
    One problem is that the clipboard gets erased when the IDE closes with some add-ins
    That's a side-effect of the way the "Office" command bar buttons work. Their icons get assigned/unassigned to the buttons through the clipboard, which is extremely annoying. Add-Ins without buttons with icons won't have that problem.
    Any software I post in these forums written by me is provided “AS IS” without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, and permission is hereby granted, free of charge and without restriction, to any person obtaining a copy. Please understand that I’ve been programming since the mid-1970s and still have some of that code. My contemporary VB6 project is approaching 1,000 modules. In addition, I have a “VB6 random code folder” that is overflowing. I’ve been at this long enough to truly not know with absolute certainty from whence every single line of my code has come, with much of it coming from programmers under my employ who signed intellectual property transfers. I have not deliberately attempted to remove any licenses and/or attributions from any software. If someone finds that I have inadvertently done so, I sincerely apologize, and, upon notice and reasonable proof, will re-attach those licenses and/or attributions. To all, peace and happiness.

  36. #36
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    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Well I finally found a workaround to the MZ-Tools slow startup problem. A bit of a strange solution, actually!

    I thought I'd try writing an add-in to load MZ-Tools after the IDE started, since doing that manually was always fast. To my surprise, it was still slow! I even tried putting the loading code in a timer to execute a couple of seconds after startup, but it was still slow. This was quite a surprise TBH.

    The only thing I could think of that was different between me loading it manually, and the add-in loading it was that I had to interact with the VB6 UI by clicking the Add-Ins > Add-in Manager menu. I tried adding a line of code to my add-in to execute the first command bar item, and voila! Loading MZ-Tools after that happens quickly. It's still a mystery as to why, but I'm not sure I feel like digging into this any further.

    While I was writing the add-in, I also put in a line of code to maximize the IDE window since that is another minor Win10 annoyance (the IDE starts maximized, then suddenly normalizes shortly after loading up). Here's the code in case anyone is interested:

    Code:
    Option Explicit
    
    Public VBInstance As VBIDE.VBE
    
    Private Sub AddinInstance_OnConnection(ByVal Application As Object, ByVal ConnectMode As AddInDesignerObjects.ext_ConnectMode, ByVal AddInInst As Object, custom() As Variant)
        Set VBInstance = Application
    End Sub
    
    Private Sub AddinInstance_OnStartupComplete(custom() As Variant)
       Dim ii As Long
       
       ' Doing something with the UI makes MZ-Tools load faster?!
       VBInstance.CommandBars.Item(1).Controls(1).Execute
       
       ' Find the MZ-Tools add-in and start it
       For ii = 1 To VBInstance.Addins.Count
          If VBInstance.Addins(ii).Description = "VB 6 MZ-Tools 3.0" Then
             VBInstance.Addins(ii).Connect = True
             
             Exit For
          End If
       Next ii
    
       ' Make sure the IDE is maximized
       VBInstance.MainWindow.WindowState = vbext_ws_Maximize
    End Sub

  37. #37
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Posts
    38

    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    I use this Addin and it works fine...but in some use cases it generates errors..

    https://www.vbforums.com/showthread....ndent-VB-code-!

    Name:  Error.jpg
Views: 211
Size:  11.0 KB
    Last edited by PhuongNam; Sep 26th, 2022 at 12:26 AM.

  38. #38
    Fanatic Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    534

    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    Here are the add-ins I use :
    - VBIDEUtils (far better than MZTools, open source now) of course I wrote it
    - Mouse Wheel fix
    - Delete vbw files
    - Comment + Highlight

    I have all I need with those 4 (yes 4,not 3)

  39. #39
    PowerPoster SamOscarBrown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    NC, USA
    Posts
    8,452

    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    3? 4?
    Sam I am (as well as Confused at times).

  40. #40
    Banned
    Join Date
    Sep 2022
    Posts
    16

    Re: Add-Ins, what do you use them for?

    MZTools 3
    Callers AddIn
    CodeHelp IDE Extender

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