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Joel on Software

3rd Party .Net Grids

We are looking for a good, simple .Net grid control to use in our upcoming development.  The standard .Net grid is horrid to work with and is limited as it only works in bound mode.

We need an unbound grid that is bug free and supports in cell editing and validation (including conditional validation based on other cells in the row).  In our VB 6 projects we use the Sheridan grid which manages to meet most of our needs, but is very complex and is easily "broken" by users.

Any suggestions are welcome.

Eric Budd
Monday, March 17, 2003

I don't know what to say, other than that we do all of that with the built-in grid (although we do use a DataSet; not sure what your objection to it is, since you didn't say).

Brad (
Monday, March 17, 2003

I guess that our problem is that we tend to use a collection/class design and use grids in unbound mode.  When we change a cell, we need the contents sent to the class where validation takes place and an error message (if needed is presented to the user).  We then need to set focus back to the cell with the error.  (User requirements, Ugh!  I rather just validate a line at a time).

Anyway, we keep finding ways to break the validation pattern.  I'm just looking for a fast, easy, bullit-proof way to implement this. 

Also, since we don't use datasets, having to bind our data from the collection/class objects to a dataset to the grid is a real pain in the ass.

Eric Budd
Tuesday, March 18, 2003

I haven't tried this in Winforms, but is ASP.NET WebForms I can bind grid to custom collection object. Does this not work in WinForms?

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Yes it does work similarly in WinForms. Look into BindingContext/BindingManager, etc.

There is nothing about the databinding system in WinForms which is specifically tied to System.Data classes such as DataSet. So collections of your own classes are bindable as long as you implement various standard interfaces (eg, from something simple like IList, through to the full-on IBindingList)

Duncan Smart
Tuesday, March 18, 2003


Try the Component One FlexGrid for dotnet:
It is a re-modelling of the FlexGrid control that shipped with VB6.0 (and you could get a more comprehensive version from the vendor, which used to be someone or the other until it became Component One).
I used the Flexgrid with VB6.0 a few times, and recently used the newer FlexGrid for .NET on a new project (you can use it in both bound and unbound modes).
Most importantly you can get a trial version from the (aforementioned) web site and try it out first.

Kofi Nimoh
Saturday, March 29, 2003

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