Visual Basic Programming Examples

Other VB resources Tutorials Programs ActiveX Controls Third Party Examples

These pages collect example tutorials, programs and ActiveX controls displaying particular programming techniques in Visual Basic. 

Further Assistance

We cannot offer any further help with these examples. Most were developed by students who are no longer present. Our current students have moved onto programming in C#, and thus no longer use VB. Please do not contact us for further help, although feel free to tell us that this page was useful to you!

Other VB resources


These tutorials contain step by step graphical guides to several visual basic programming concepts and tools. Note that they are not necessarily in progressive order!

Tutorial Description Authors
# 1 Introduction to Visual Basic Part 1
  • A very basic demonstration and example of some controls and events
  • A simple example of how to program a listbox 
  • MSDN: what it is, how to get at it
  • MSDN sample programs online: how to get at'em

Mike Rounding 
James Tam

# 2 Introduction to Visual Basic Part 2.
  • Database example using the Data control
  • Saul's Sketchpad demo
  • Saul's Advanced Sketchpad demo

Mike Rounding 
James Tam
Saul Greenberg

# 3 Accessing databases using the ADO Data Control

Mike Rounding 
James Tam

# 4 Accessing databases using the Data Environment control

Mike Rounding 
James Tam

# 5 Creating a simple HelloWorld ActiveX control in Visual Basic

Saul Greenberg

# 6 How to register your ActiveX Controls on the Computer Science machines

Mike Rounding 

# 7 Building a Ticker ActiveX Control with the ActiveX Control Wizard

Mike Rounding 
Rod Stephens

# 8 Building a Transparent ActiveX Control that lets you click on a non-rectangular image

Mike Rounding 
Shaun Kaasten

# 9 Dynamic queries and databases: simple example on how you can use sliders  to build a query to a database Mike Rounding
# 10 The "Bitton" control, beginning guide to building ActiveX controls a few different ways along with some ActiveX explanation Mike Rounding
# 11 This program demonstrates dragging and dropping from explorer and between forms and also includes a cool control moving code module. Mike Rounding
Saul Greenberg
# 12 This is a step-by-step tutorial for how to integrate Macromedia Flash into your VB applications. Complete with instructions on how to pass information back and forth and also how to remotely invoke Flash methods right in VB! Mike Hornby-Smith


Project  Description Authors
vbHelloWorld A simple hello world program that illustrates a basic VB program as well as the command button and timer control.

Saul Greenberg

FirstProject We use this nonsense program as a first VB exercise for students to do.
The left figure shows when it looks like when the program is executed, while the right shows what happens after the user has clicked the button 3 times and selected the checkbox, and moved the mouse over the form. Try to program this yourself. It uses a command (or button), a label, and a checkbox. 

James Tam

vbImages These two vb Projects illustrates two ways to cycle through images stored in a local directory. Each demonstrates different controls for accessing files, while both show a control for displaying images.

Saul Greenberg

vbMarquee A marquee (an automatically scrolling text region) is used to illustrate a Timer, a status bar and a checkbox control, and simple graphical repositioning,

Saul Greenberg

vbMoveList An example of how to use listboxes (as well as how to put images into buttons). This example lets you move items between lists.

Rod Stephens, modified by Saul Greenberg

vbPlaysound Illustrates how to play a wave file in Visual Basic. It works by declaring a function to the WIN32 API sndPlaySound . 
Don't be intimidated: its two lines of code!

Saul Greenberg

vbSketchpads Illustrates two simple sketchpads. The first one is only about 6 lines of code, and just illustrates some very basic graphics and event handling. The second shows how one can dynamically create controls at run time (the items on the palette), how controls can be positioned at runtime, and how controls can be resized when the window is resized. Its a longer program, but well worth going through to see how these features work.

See Tutorial 2 for step by step instructions for how these programs work.

Saul Greenberg

vbDrawpad A simple object-oriented drawing editor that allows a user to create, move and erase squares. You can easily extend this to include different graphical classes e.g., circles, lines, etc., or to any interactive graphics. The program illustrates
  • how to do simple object-based interactive graphics in VB
  • how to use a collection
  • how to use a class

Saul Greenberg

vbDynamicQueries This program is similar to the drawing editor above, but used for completely different purposes. It illustrates how to do dynamic queries on city attributes, where cities on a map are filtered immediately as a person moves a slider or checks a checkbox. While the example is simple, the possibilities of how you can enhance it are endless.

Click on the image to view it in full size.

Saul Greenberg

vbTableLens Illustrates how to create a very simple table lens that toggles cells between graphical and textual views.

Click on the image to view it in full size.

Rod Stephens

vbDragPicture Illustrates how to Bitblit a picture on another picture, and how to drag it around. 

Rod Stephens

vbDragTreeNode Illustrates how to use the Tree control and how to drag items around different parts of the tree 

Rod Stephens

vbMoveControls An example application that lets a user interactively move different kinds of controls on a display.  Illustrates interactive graphics.

Saul Greenberg

vbclassexample Illustrates how to create a simple class that raises events

Saul Greenberg

vbFlexdata-example Illustrates a database with the flex control. The database
just has two fields: name and phone. This example lets you add and remove records. To make the grid sorted, we set the data control's record source property to the SQL statment: Select * from friends order by FirstName. The record is just added to the end of the file, but the flex grid shows it sorted. See also Tutorial 3 and Tutorial 4 for other ways to access databases.

Shaun Kaasten

vbShapedControls Illustrates how you can clip the shape of a control or form to a variety of regions.

Shaun Kaasten

ActiveX Controls

Project Description Author
HelloWorld  A tutorial and example project that shows you how to build a minimalist VB ActiveX Control Component. It just contains a label saying "Hello World" and has no code attached to it. However, it does have a toolbox control icon. Includes an example program.  

Saul Greenberg

TickerTape A tutorial and example project that shows you how to build a TickerTape control out of a label. It also illustrates the ActiveX Control Wizard. 

Mike Rounding
Rod Stephens

ElusiveProfessor A VB ActiveX Control that creates a 'new' type of button (actually a standard but augmented command button) that moves away from the person who is trying to click it. Includes an example program. The design was based upon a class project where students had to design a button that reflected their personality.

Saul Greenberg

FollowMe This program creates a command button that will follow the mouse around.

This simple but very useful example illustrates

  • using the Extender object in a VB UserControl to access outside properties and methods
  • the use of calls from the Win32 API for finding mouse cursor coordinates
  • scaling those coordinates in terms of a container object (be it a form or another control container)

Michael Rounding

vbRangeSlider Illustrates a very crude range slider written in ActiveX. I include it to
  • show you how you can do interactive graphics (well, at least some simple stuff), 
  • how you can make an active x control that you can include in a project. 

It is limited. It does not scale its size, and I did not spend any time doing all the things that one normally does to package up a control. This is really just a quick hack. Feel free to improve it and pass it on to the class.

To use: Unzip the file into a directory. Check out the test program in a sub directory that I included. In your own project, you can include the range slider by going into  project/components and then selecting Browse. Navigate to the OCX file that will be in the unzipped directory and select it. You will see a new control that you can select.

Saul Greenberg

PictureClip A tutorial program that shows you how to use the PictureClip component for creating animations.

Dave Miller, 581 student

ShowNeighbours An activeX control plus exe that shows you how to find the other controls in a form from inside an ActiveX control. Saul Greenberg used this example to build a Mr. Popularity button, where all the other controls on the form gravitate towards a Mr Popularity ActiveX button.

Chris Bradley, 581 student Illustrates how you can build a transparent ActiveX Control that lets you detect clicks on a non-rectangular image (in the figure on the right these would be the red letters). See Tutorial 8

Mike Rounding,
Shaun Kaasten Similar to, except this version follows your mouse wherever it goes around the screen - very fun. 

Mike Rounding, This example includes a user control that will move itself towards any other control. This example illustrates some custom events and properties in a user control, and shows how to do do simple control animation with a timer.

Mike Rounding

Third Party Examples

We've found these on the web or in books, and they are too good not to include

(as zip or .bas)
Description Author
animation Bitmap Animation: Shows how to build a simple bitmap animation.

Rod Stephens Transparency: A tool library to do transparency, including transparent controls.

Doug Gaede An ActiveX control that implements a range slider. Looks pretty good!

Author unknown

VB-ScreenCapture.BAS Capturing bitmaps: A BAS library for capturing various portions of a screen.

Microsoft website