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Joel on Software

UI control vendor info

We’re getting read to make multiple UI control purchases (toolbars, grids, etc.).  Does anyone know where to get a comprehensive listing of who makes what controls, and maybe even customer ratings or reviews?  Not really interested in open source or homebrewed options.

I know of; what else is out there?

Thanks in advance,

Joe Paradise
Thursday, December 11, 2003

For commercial controls, nothing is quite so comprehensive as ComponentSource.

Why are you excluding things that are free? My experience with controls is that most of them are bad enough that I want to tweak them and bug fix them anyway, so not having source is a non-starter.

Brad Wilson (
Thursday, December 11, 2003

Need dedicated support.  Can't wait for some guy doing it for free to get around to it when he's not busy with his day job.

I'm looking for the following controls, supporting an Outlook 2003 style:
- Toolbar
- Grid
- Schedule/Calendar display
- Navigation bar
- Dockable window pane
- Balloon tip
- Date combobox
- Time combobox
- Color combobox

Already know about the biggies (Infragistics, Janus, DataDynamics, etc.).  Who do you use?

Joe Paradise
Thursday, December 11, 2003

Friday, December 12, 2003

Developer Express is worth a look, though I haven't evaluated them in depth - but their demo projects are pretty spiffy.

Mike Gunderloy
Friday, December 12, 2003

Just because you buy a commercial control, doesn't mean you're guaranteed to get a fix in lightning fast time. In fact, your bug may never get fixed.

I don't know about you, but with source code in hand, I'm going to fix the bug way before any vendor would.

Brad Wilson (
Friday, December 12, 2003

You’re right about no guarantees.  That’s why I’m being careful about which control vendors we buy from.

As for having the source code, that’s great, but I’d rather pay for a vendor to fix their own bugs than have to take the time to sift through their code, understand it, and fix it myself.  Time is money and I can’t code everything.  In my mind this is no different than hiring contractors.

Joe Paradise
Friday, December 12, 2003

We've been using DotNetBar ( for around a year and a half. We've never had a problem, and any feature requests/tweaks we've asked for have been done inmmediately. I highly reccomend it.

For grid/etc. with a comprehensive Outlook style we've been using Janus tools ( We haven't had a need for it in a major project yet, but all tests were great and we expect it to work out well for us.


Sunday, December 14, 2003

Thanks everyone for their input, especially Josh for his input on DevComponents.  I'll probably go with DotNetBar over Infragistics' toolbar now.

Does anyone know of Outlook 2003 style navigation controls?  I've downloaded a demo of PureComponent's Navigator; looking for others.

Also, have any of the grid vendors updated their product to the Outlook 2003 style (solid white group headers)?


Joe Paradise
Monday, December 15, 2003

Hi Joe,

If by "Outlook 2003 style navigation controls" you mean the new style of Navigation bar on the left side of Outlook 2003, then there isn't any real option yet. Pure Components is somewhat simliar, but not really. Dennis from DevComponents has said that they will be doing one, but he doesn't have a release date yet. I'm just waiting for his, since all of his things just plain work. HE also rarely charges for upgrades. I originally bought like v1.5 and the only charge for upgrading to the current 3.x was around $30 for 2.0.

You might want to ask them about it on their support forum. Although, I think that may only be open to current customers.

By the way, I believe that has the best price on DNB, and most others for that matter.


Thursday, December 18, 2003

Thanks again Josh.  I'll take another look at DevComponents offerings, and also their forums.

The problem with that Outlook 2003 bar is that what I'm wanting is a variation on what MS's component does.  Basically, I'd like to have nested bars, and a container control under each bar.  It's kind of a hybrid between the 2003 and XP Outlook bar styles.  Have a suspicion I'll have to create that one myself.

Joe Paradise
Monday, December 22, 2003

If you are looking for an outlook 2003 navigation control.  I just found one ond DevelopedComponents.Net.

We are currently testing it for useability and reliability from a first glance it seems to have a very sensible developers UI.

I will let you know how we get on with it. 

p.s I have to say that we too use DevComponents as well and have found them excellent.

Thursday, January 29, 2004

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