This Technical Note discusses special features and concerns that should be considered when using the extended controls introduced in System Software 5.0.
Changes since November 1990: Added information on which fields the Control Manager automatically copies from a custom control's template to its control record. Corrected NewControl2 parameter order. Added a note about SetCtlTitle. Changed some "pea 0" instructions into "pha" when pushing space for results.
The extended controls introduced in System Software 5.0 allow the application programmer a great deal more freedom in designing and controlling applications. The new features enhance the functionality of the controls and TaskMaster, but can cause confusion and consternation if you are careless with the new parameter block. This Note also includes a discussion of the multipart nature of many of the extended controls and some pointers for writing extended custom controls.
One of the major stumbling blocks seen when programming the new extended controls is bad parameter counts. Extended controls introduce parameter blocks and parameter counts to the Control Manager. You need to fully understand the parameters required and the resulting parameter count for each control you create, or you can experience program problems that may be very confusing and difficult to track down.
Remember also that the Control Manager does not understand "skipping parameters." If you are creating an extended radio button and you want key equivalents, but not a color table, you cannot ignore the color table parameter field. There is no way to tell the Control Manager to "skip" a field during control creation; make sure you initialize all the fields to values that are meaningful -- either a real pointer, handle, resource ID, or zeroes. In this case, if you try to "skip" the color table and do not zero out the color table parameter field, the resulting radio button wears ugly colors you do not expect.
As you can imagine, miscounting parameters in other extended controls can produce confusing results, so the parameter count is the first place you should check when you're having difficulties creating extended controls.
For Rez users, the Types.Rez file contains extended control templates that automatically generate the correct count value, so programmers creating all their controls with the Resource Compiler should not have these problems.
The other area of the new parameter block model that is giving folks trouble is the moreflags field. This field hones the definition given by the reference fields and can cause you much grief if misused. Make sure to set the reference bits to the values you require. The bit settings have been standardized across all the extended controls, with %00 indicating a pointer, %01 indicating a handle, and %10 indicating a resource. Remember also to set the bits for all the references you have -- strings, color tables, or whatever else may be ambiguously referenced in the control.
If you accidentally use the wrong bit pattern, you can experience strange bugs ranging from garbled text to SysFailMgr caused by a nonexistent resource being referenced. Again, Rez users can use the equates for all the reference specifiers in the Types.Rez file to avoid confusion and evil bugs.
To create some new extended controls, like pop-up menu controls and LineEdit controls, functions of different tool sets were combined. Pop-up menu controls are a combination of the Control Manager and the Menu Manager, LineEdit controls are a blending of the Control Manager and the LineEdit tool set, and other new control types follow the same pattern.
This means that, at times, you have to go further into the documentation to find information. Getting the text out of an LineEdit extended control is a multistep process that is a good example of this type of problem.
MyLineEdit dc i2'8' ; parameter count dc i4'1' ; id number 1 dc i2'10,10,23,90' ; control rectangle dc i4'editLineControl' ; process reference dc i2'0' ; flags dc i2'fCtlCanBeTarget+fCtlWantEvents+fCtlProcRefNotPtr' ; moreflags dc i2'0' ; refcon dc i2'15' ; maximum characters allowed dc i4'0' ; no default text MyLineEditHandle ds 4 ; handle for the created control pha pha pushlong mywindowgrafport ;window that control will residein pea 0 ;verb, single Extended control pushlong #MyLineEdit _NewControl2 pla sta MyLineEditHandle ; save the control handle pla sta MyLineEditHandle+2
When you want to get the text back out of that control later, you begin to experience what it means to have a control that is an amalgam of various tools. You would start by using the control handle returned by NewControl2:
Scratch equ $0 ; some scratch space Scratch2 equ $4 lda MyLineEditHandle ; move the ControlHandle to sta Scratch ; some direct page space lda MyLineEditHandle+2 sta Scratch+2 lda [Scratch] tax ldy #2 lda [Scratch],y ; and dereference it, putting it ; back in some dpage sta Scratch+2 ; space to use it. stx Scratch
That gives you the pointer to the control record. Stored in the control record is the handle of the LineEdit item that is actually controlling the text processing:
pha ; make space for the text handle to ; be returned pha ldy #octlData ; offset to the ctlData section ; of the ControlRecord lda [Scratch],y ; where the handle for the actual tax ; LineEdit item was stored iny iny lda [Scratch],y pha phx _LEGetTextHand ; ask for the handle for the text pla ; in this LineEdit control sta Scratch2 ; and now you have the handle to ; the text you want. pla sta Scratch2+2
The main point is that when you are using extended controls, you often cannot use the Control Manager to do everything that needs to be done. You also need to understand and use the supplementary or "hidden" tool sets.
Here's another example, using a pop-up menu extended control, and in this case we define a font pop-up that contains all the font names currently available.
MyPopUpControl dc i2'9' ; parameter count of 9 dc i4'1' ; control ID of 1 dc i2'2,2,0,0' ; Position, upper left corner of ; the window, let ; Control Manager calculate full ; size dc i4'popUpControl' ; def proc for PopUp dc i2'0' ; flags dc i2'fCtlWantEvents+fCtlProcRefNotPtr' ; more flags dc i4'0' ; ref con dc i2'0' ; title width, will be calculated dc i4'mymenu' ; pointer to actual menu structure dc i2'500' ; initial value, item number of ; item to be displayed in popup at ; creation mymenu dc i2'0' ; version number, should be 0 dc i2'200' ; menu ID number dc i2'0' ; menu flags dc i4'mymenutitle' ; pointer to menu title dc i4'mymenuitem1' ; first menu item dc i4'mymenuitem2' ; second menu item dc i4'0' ; null terminator, end of menu mymenutitle str 'Font' mymenuitem1 dc i2'0' ; version number dc i2'500' ; item number dc i2'0' ; no hot keys dc i2'0' ; not checked dc i2'0' ; item flags, no special drawing dc i4'mymenuitem1title' mymenuitem1title str 'Plain' mymenuitem2 dc i2'0' ; version number dc i2'501' ; item number dc i2'0' ; no hot keys dc i2'0' ; not checked dc i2'1' ; item flags, bold face this one dc i4'mymenuitem2title' mymenuitem2title str 'Bold'
Now create this control:
pha pha pushlong mywindow ; target window grafptr pea 0 ; verb, single control pointer pushlong #MyPopUpMenu _NewControl2 pulllong mypopuphandle ; save the handle
This pop-up menu control created is not associated with the menu bar across the top of the desktop. You can consider each of your pop-up menu controls as separate menu bars, so if you want to perform Menu Manager calls on a pop-up menu control, you need to set the menu to point at your pop-up menu control. In this example, to add all the fonts available to the pop-up menu you would:
pha pha ; space to hold current bar _GetMenuBar ; get the handle to the current ; menu bar pushlong mypopuphandle _SetMenuBar pea 200 ; id number of this menu pea 502 ; first font family ID number to ; use pea 0 ; fontspecbits _FixFontMenu pea 0 pea 0 pea 200 _CalcMenuSize ; re-size the popup menu _SetMenuBar ; restore the previous menu as the ; current menu
The new picture extended control is not a "full-fledged" control; it has been provided to simplify your programming tasks. The picture control does not support normal mouse hit testing and highlighting. Think of it as a built-in extension to your content drawing routine, and not as a control. It is provided to allow you to refresh your whole window with a single DrawControls call, instead of drawing the controls and then drawing pictures. The icon button extended control has been provided as the graphic full-function control. If you need or want a fully functional control that uses a picture, you should consider writing your own custom control procedure.
Custom controls can also benefit from all the advantages of extended controls. You can create a custom control that uses a template, can be a resource, has a definition procedure that is a resource, and responds to all the new control calls. If you write an extended custom control or upgrade a previously-written custom control, there are new messages and changes to existing messages of which you need to be aware. These changes are documented in volume 3 of the Apple IIgs Toolbox Reference.
The Control Manager copies the following fields from the control template to the control record before it sends your control the init message: ctlOwner, ctlID, ctlRect, ctlFlag, ctlHilite, ctlMoreFlags, ctlVersion, ctlRefCon, and ctlProc. The ctlNext field is owned by the Control Manager. If any additional fields need to be set up based on the control template (such as ctlValue, ctlData, ctlColor, and any custom fields), your init routine needs to take care of it.
Putting your custom control definition procedure in a resource can significantly enhance the functionality of the custom control. You may find it easier to add to all of your programs and you do not have to manage the code space required. If you do write a custom control definition procedure and want to store it as a resource, here are some hints for success.
First, the code you store in your resource fork must be fully compiled and linked code. The code resource converter uses the System Loader to load the code, so the code must be executable code, not object code.
Second, set the convert and locked bits of the resource attributes for your code resource. The convert bit must be set to tell the Resource Manager to call the code resource converter when it loads this resource. The resource type for control definition procedures is rCtlDefProc, $800C.
By setting locked but not fixed, memory fragmentation is reduced (because of how the code resource converter and Memory Manager work). Setting the locked attribute is also recommended for compatibility with future system software.
Third, keep in mind that this definition procedure may be purged and reloaded whenever the Memory Manager needs the space. This means that you cannot store any information in your definition procedure if you want to keep track of it between calls to the definition procedure. If you do, and your definition procedure gets purged and reloaded, you lose that data.
If you need data space for your custom control, use the control record as your stash. You can easily either use the fields already provided in the control record, or you can expand the control record to as much space as you need (within sensible limits) and store your data there.
Warning: Control definition procedures are initially loaded with purge level zero. When they are released, they are given purge level three. If they are then reloaded, the Resource Manager does not change the purge level back to zero -- your definition procedure may then be purged (even while executing) unless its handle is locked. The solution is to lock your definition procedure handle within the procedure:
myPosition pea 0 ; space for result pea 0 pushLong #myPosition _FindHandle _HLock
...and unlock your handle with HUnlock on exit. This keeps your procedure safe, while not creating "code islands," which clog up memory.
If you call SetCtlTitle to give a control a new title, everything is great if the new title is referenced the same way as the current title (by pointer, by handle, or by resource ID). If the new title is referenced differently, you must first call SetCtlMoreFlags on your control so that the SetCtlTitle value can be interpreted correctly.
The extended controls provided in System Software 5.0 and later are a great leap forward for programmers. They relieve the application of much of the tedious detail code that relates to housekeeping, not the guts of application programming. Used in combination with the enhanced TaskMaster, you can have an application's visual interface up and running a lot faster, leaving you more time to work on the heart of your application.
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