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Louis Kessler's Behold Blog » Blog Entry           prev Prev   Next next

Saturday, April 5, 2003 - Sat, 5 Apr 2003

It’s always difficult when I get into customizing features that are embedded in the third-party packages I use. In this case, I use ElTree for the tree structure for my main Behold tree, the Organize GEDCOMs, Families, and Tags pages, and the Name Index. For the Tags page and Name Index, I want to allow multiple selection.

But there seem to be a few bugs in ElTree with this. Finding them, ensuring they are indeed bugs, and trying to resolve them with the author is always an effort. It involves posting to the Eldos Forum and getting the authors to be able to reproduce the bug and then waiting for them to fix it in a later version and then updating to the new version and testing. If I’m told what the fixes would be, I could always patch my copy of their code with the fixes as a last resort.

The particular problems here are very annoying to me as adding multiple selections causes erratic behavior. I’ll post the problems and await the response. For now I’ll have to ignore this and go on, but I will make sure I resolve it before I release Behold.

Thinking more about this, I’ve had ElPack suite of utilities for about 2 years, but shortly after I started implementing it, I found out about Virtual Treeview, which was freeware and seemed to have a better Tree utility that ElTree, but it was hard at the time to compare what features I needed. But all the other (almost 100) components that ElPack offered seemed to make it worthwhile to stay with ElTree and not mix.

Now with the latest problems, I’m beginning to wonder if I should go to Virtual Treeview while I still can. I have found ElTree quite difficult to set up and maintain with its hundreds of properties and the data becomes dependant on the tree itself. Virtual Treeview keeps the data separate from the tree which is much cleaner and more efficient. Mike Lischke, the author of Virtual Treeview continues to enhance it, and is also an expert in Unicode and Windows XP Themes. Virtual Treeview, like Richview, have both been included with the Delphi 7 release, which gives them both extra endorsement.

But, as long as I’m using Delphi 4, I would also have to install the Windows XP Theme manager for Virtual Treeview to work. I don’t look forward to installing that on my Windows 98 machine - I can see possible problems. At the very minimum, it would probably take about 2 solid weeks to convert over … if I’m lucky.

ElPack is coming out with Version 4 soon. It will not be a free upgrade. I’ll think about this, but maybe I’ll stick with version 3.x of ElPack for now until I come out with my first releases of Behold. After it is stable and is out, maybe I’ll justify to myself to upgrade first to Delphi 7, and then to switch to Virtual Treeview.

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