ALPFrame is an application that hosts Microsoft Internet Explorer
and implements two important features:
- Dynamic loading of the ActiveX DLL files, designed to run
without need to access the system registry.
- Extends the DHTML object
model with fully scriptable menus - window and context, window
management and more.
What is the Dynamic loading of the ActiveX DLL files?
By default all the ActiveX development tools produce components
that need to access the system registry in order to load their type
libraries and provide automation (functional IDispatch interface) to
the scripts. Thus ASP pages are able to use only components registered
in the system. ALPFrame uses its configuration file to load the listed
components and allow the pages to create objects implemented there
without need to register these components first. The components listed
there must be able to load their type information directly form their
resources of some file. ALP engine and its core components are loaded
using this technique and therefore ALPFrame allows ALP engine to start
without need of prior installation. This is extremely useful for
auto-run CDs and other situations in which installation is to be
avoided if possible.
On the support site registered users may download the
redistribution files in two standard packages - one of them is
prepared for the above case - running ALP without prior installation.
For a demo you can use the ALPFrame sample package on the public site
- if you want to test your application with it - you can just replace
samples with your application and correct the start page in the alpframe.cfg
More about the ALPFrame
ALPFrame currently uses windows without decorations. Future
versions will use this mode as default - no matter what additional
features will be added. The DHTML pages are able to resize that
windows, change their style, make them "on top",
minimize/maximize them and so on. See the Extended
DTHML model for more information. Also ALPFrame uses the VarioMenu
component to supply powerful menu management features to the pages.
With ALPFrame DHTML pages are able to do with the menus the same
things that the typical windows applications do. Menu management can
be implemented easily by using the menu compiler ASP script (see the ALPFrame
helper libraries) or/and deal with it directly using the VarioMenu
components. Applications targeting look-and-feel closer to the
standard windows application will benefit of these features and still
implement their major functionality using the standard WEB techniques.
Also - although ALPFrame is new and you cannot force final users to
use it as browser replacement in certain cases - in some special
situations such as corporate environment ALPFrame can be used for
intranet and mixed intranet/ALP applications extending them with
features like menus.
Interested? What to read first?
Take a look at the ALPFrame examples first (use the
installed start menu icon or the desktop shortcut). If you are looking for
an easy way to use menus - see the menu compiler example - it is
presented as a tour and step by step gives you ability to pass through
the process of menu creation.
Then use the Extended DHTML model
topic as a start point in this documentation.