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How To Select a Directory Without the Common Dialog Control

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This article demonstrates how to display the directory structure of a computer and allow a user to select a directory without using the Common Dialog control.

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More information

The sample project uses the following API functions to display the directory structure of a computer:
  • SHBrowseForFolder - displays a dialog box that enables the user to select a shell folder.
  • SHGetPathFromIDList - converts an item identifier list to a file system path.

Create the Sample Project

  1. Start a new Standard EXE project in Visual Basic. Form1 is created by default.
  2. Add a CommandButton to Form1.
  3. Copy the following code to the Code window of Form1:
          Option Explicit
          Private Const BIF_RETURNONLYFSDIRS = 1
          Private Const BIF_DONTGOBELOWDOMAIN = 2
          Private Const MAX_PATH = 260
          Private Declare Function SHBrowseForFolder Lib "shell32" _
                                            (lpbi As BrowseInfo) As Long
          Private Declare Function SHGetPathFromIDList Lib "shell32" _
                                            (ByVal pidList As Long, _
                                            ByVal lpBuffer As String) As Long
          Private Declare Function lstrcat Lib "kernel32" Alias "lstrcatA" _
                                            (ByVal lpString1 As String, ByVal _
                                            lpString2 As String) As Long
          Private Type BrowseInfo
             hWndOwner      As Long
             pIDLRoot       As Long
             pszDisplayName As Long
             lpszTitle      As Long
             ulFlags        As Long
             lpfnCallback   As Long
             lParam         As Long
             iImage         As Long
          End Type
          Private Sub Command1_Click()
          'Opens a Treeview control that displays the directories in a computer
             Dim lpIDList As Long
             Dim sBuffer As String
             Dim szTitle As String
             Dim tBrowseInfo As BrowseInfo
             szTitle = "This is the title"
             With tBrowseInfo
                .hWndOwner = Me.hWnd
                .lpszTitle = lstrcat(szTitle, "")
             End With
             lpIDList = SHBrowseForFolder(tBrowseInfo)
             If (lpIDList) Then
                sBuffer = Space(MAX_PATH)
                SHGetPathFromIDList lpIDList, sBuffer
                sBuffer = Left(sBuffer, InStr(sBuffer, vbNullChar) - 1)
                MsgBox sBuffer
             End If
          End Sub
  4. On the Run menu, click Start or press the F5 key to start the program. Click the CommandButton to display the directory structure of the computer. Select a directory and click the OK button to display the directory you selected in a message box.

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Keywords: kbhowto, kbgrpdsvb, KB179497

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Article Info
Article ID : 179497
Revision : 4
Created on : 7/13/2004
Published on : 7/13/2004
Exists online : False
Views : 487