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Flexible VCL Style Utils Library Made It Easy To Modernize The Dev-C++ Dialogs With VCL Styles In Delphi


VCL Styles Utils is an open source Delphi library for extending VCL styles into the platform native dialogs of Windows. It also has features for styling shell dialogs, popup menus, and even parts of TWebBrowser. Dev-C++ is a fast, portable, simple, and free native Windows C/C++ IDE and has been downloaded over 67,796,885 times since 2000. The original Dev-C++ and Orwell Dev-C++ were built in Delphi 6 and 7 which does not support VCL styles. During the Embarcadero sponsored upgrade of Dev-C++ to compile under Delphi 10.4.1+ support for a number of VCL styles was added. However, we also wanted to bring that styled look to the native system dialogs that are present in the application for opening and saving files and other dialog integration points. The VCL Styles Utils library allowed us to easily do this without much code. In fact it was as simple as including the units at the top of the main project like this:

Deploying the VCL Styles Utils project in your own projects really takes them to the next level. You get native high DPI styles with Delphi 10.4.1+ and beyond and it gets extended to the native Windows dialogs as well for a polished professional look. If you are modernizing your own apps this is an easy way to bring them all the way forward and close the loop with great looking style support.

VCL Styles Utils Features List

  • Vcl.Styles.Ext unit extended the VCL Styles adding new properties and methods to list, remove and reload VCL Styles.
  • Vcl.Styles.Utils unit, allows modify the VCL Styles manipulating the visual elements and fonts colors.
  • TNCControls component which allow you add controls to the Non Client area of the form
  • Vcl.Styles.WebBrowser unit, add support for style the scrollbars and dialogs of the TWebBrowser component.
  • Vcl.Styles.Utils.Menus unit, add support for style the VCL popup menus, system and Shell menus.
  • Vcl.Styles.SysControls add support for style the Standard Windows dialogs.
  • Vcl.Styles.FormStyleHooks unit add support for use images and solid colors in the title and background of the TForms.
  • Task Dialogs support.
  • Vcl.Styles.Fixes unit Fix several QC reports related to the VCL Styles.
  • TVclStylesPreview component to preview a VCL Style.
  • Vcl.Styles.Hook unit to enable patch Windows API and Windows Style methods.
  • Vcl.Styles.ColorTabs unit includes a new Style hook for the TPageControl and TTabSheet components.
  • TVclStylesSystemMenu component for select a VCL Style from the system Menu.

The normal native Windows Delphi TOpenTextFileDialog open dialog would look like this:


And with the VCL Styles Utils library applied it extends the VCL style to the native Windows Delphi TOpenTextFileDialog dialog to look like this:


The developer behind the VCL Styles Utils has a blog category around the project which you can check out. You can also check out the Dev-C++ showcase for more screenshots of all of the different styles used in the new Embarcadero Dev-C++.

Head over and check out all of the different features available in the VCL Styles Utils library for native Windows development in Delphi on GitHub.

You can find out more about the Embarcadero version of Dev-C++ over on GitHub.

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