Customizing the Environment VB Help

After familiarizing yourself with the IDE, you will probably want to customize it according to your taste and requirements. To access the customization tools, choose Tools> Options to open the Options dialog-box, as shown. Let’s now look at the various ways you can customize the IDE by using the settings in this dialog box.

The Editor Tab

You use the settings in this tap to customize the behavior of the Code and Project windows. Visual Basic lets you customize these two windows according to your personal preferences and your experience.

Code Settings

The Code settings let you specify the behavior of the text editor of the Code window. Use the settings on this tab to specify how much help you want Visual-Basic to provide as you enter your code. The Code Settings section of the Editor tab has the following options.

Auto Syntax Check Check this checkbox if you want· Visual Basic to verify the syntax of every line ‘of code as you enter it. If you make a syntax error, Visual Basic issues a warning, and the line turns red when you press Enter

Require Variable Declaration Check this checkbox if you want to require explicit variable declarations. If you check this option; the statement Option Explicit is added automatically on each Form and Module.,

Auto List Members Check this checkbox to display a pop-up list with the members of a control. As soon as you type a control’s name followed by a period (which means you are about to type a property or a method name), Visual Basic displays all the members (properties, methods, and events) of the control.

Auto Quick Info Check this box to display information about functions and their parameter ..For example, if you want to call the MsgBoxO function in your code and the Auto Quick Info feature is enabled, Visual Basic displays the syntax of the function for you. As you enter the arguments of the function, the current argument is highlighted, as shown.

Auto Data Tips Check this box to display the value of the variable over which your cursor is placed. Auto Data Tips are available in break state only. If you break the execution of an application and switch to the Code window, you can place the pointer over a variable to see its value.The Stop statement was inserted to interrupt the execution of the application.

Auto Indent Check this box if you want to be able to tab the first line of code; all subsequent lines start at that tab location.

Tab Width Enter a number in this textbox to set the tab width; the default value is four spaces. Valid values are in the range 1 to 32.

Window Setting

Use the Window Settings to specify a few basic characteristics of the Code Editor.

Drag-and-Drop Text Editing Check this box to allow drag-and-drop operations from the Code window to the Immediate or Watch windows .

Default to Full Module View Check this box to view a scrollable list of procedures when you edit code in a Code window. If this box is not checked, you can view only one procedure at a time.

Procedure Separator Check this box to display the separator bars that appear between procedures in the Code window.

The Editor Format Tab

You use this tab to set the attributes for the type of text selected in the Code Colors list. Select the type of text from this list, and then specify how you want it to appear in the Code window.

The General Tab

In this tab, you specify the settings of the grid, error-trapping, and compile options for the current project, as shown.

Form Grid Settings

The settings in this section let you specify the characteristics of the grid on which the controls are placed, These characteristics include the density of the grid points, whether the grid will be visible, and so on.

Show Grid Check this box to specify that the grid on a Form is visible.

Grid Units Displays the units used for measuring distances on the grid units, which are twips. This unit is explained in detail.

Width, Height In these textboxes, enter the numbers that determine the width and height of the grid cells.

Align Controls to Grid Check this box if you want Visual Basic to automatically resize and reposition controls so that their outer edges are on grid lines.

Show ScreenTips Check this box to display ScreenTips for the toolbar and Toolbox items.

Collapse Proj. Hides Windows Check this box to hide the window when a project is collapsed in the Project Explorer.

Error Trapping .

The options in this section of the General tab let you specify under what conditions an error in an application will generate a runtime error and be interrupted.

Break on All Errors Check this box if you want Visual Basic to enter break state on any error, even if the error is handled by an error handler.

Break in Class Module Check this box if you want any error in a Class Module without an error handler to cause the project to enter break state.

Break on Unhandled Errors When you check this box, any error causes the project to enter break state if there is no active error handler.


The Compile options let you specify how and when Visual Basic will compile an application before it starts executing it.

Compile on Demand Check this box if you want to compile code as needed, which allows the application to start sooner. If this checkbox is not cleared, Visual Basic compiles the entire project and then starts executing it: If you choose Run > Start with Full Compile, Visual Basic ignores the Compile on Demand setting and
performs a full compile.

Background Compile When an application starts executing without a full compile  VisualBasic can use thr .dle time during runtime to finish the project’s compilation in the background if this checkbox is checked.

Posted on November 4, 2015 in Getting Started with Visual Basic

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