Assessing Readiness for Exam 70-306
In addition to the general exam-readiness information in the previous section, there are several things you can do to prepare for the "Developing and Implementing Windows-Based Applications with Microsoft Visual Basic .NET and Microsoft Visual Studio .NET"exam. We suggest that you join an active Microsoft Developers mailing list, obtain a Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) subscription, and regularly visit the MSDN Web site for new information (http://msdn.microsoft.com).
Microsoft exam mavens also recommend checking the Microsoft Knowledge Base (integrated into the MSDN CD-ROM, or on the Microsoft Web site at http://support.microsoft.com/support/) for "meaningful technical support issues" that relate to your exam's topics. Although we're not sure exactly what the quoted phrase means, we have noticed some overlap between technical support questions on particular products and troubleshooting questions on the exams for those products.
Onward, Through the Fog!
After you've assessed your readiness, undertaken the right
background studies, obtained the hands-on experience that will help
you understand the products and technologies at work, and reviewed
the many sources of information to help you prepare for a test,
you'll be ready to take a round of practice tests. When your scores
come back positive enough to get you through the exam, you're ready
to go after the real thing. If you follow our assessment
Chapter 1. Introducing Windows Forms
Terms you'll need to understand:
Techniques you'll need to master:
A user interface allows information to be input and modified for
use by the application. Many types of controls can be added to the
Introduction to the .NET Development Environment
The Microsoft .NET initiative involves a change in the fundamental structure of development and deployment. The .NET development platform integrates support for multiple development languages such as Visual Basic .NET and C# (pronounced see-sharp ) with the Common Language Runtime (CLR) and a shared Framework class library (FCL). These allow programmers to perform programmatic development in whatever language they are most comfortable, with a final solution integrating all the various code segments through common classes and runtime library inclusions.
Code development for the .NET environment may be performed using
a text editor and the command-line compilers within the .NET SDK,
but a more robust solution exists in the form of Microsoft's Visual
Studio .NET product. This product includes an Integrated
Development Environment (IDE) and advanced editing tools that make
it possible to
Objects and Classes
Visual Basic .NET is an object-oriented language in which every
A class is a blueprint for an object rather than an object itself. Classes will have many properties, some created by the developer and others derived from the class itself. The properties and methods of a class can be split into two categories:
A class encapsulates both data and behavior into a single concept. In addition to having its own members, a class may inherit some or all of its members from a parent class.
Specific methods of assigning inheritance are discussed later in this chapter, but Figure 1.1 provides an example of the chain of inheritance from a Windows form through its parent and that, in turn, back to the most fundamental classthe Object class.
Figure 1.1. An example of class inheritance in which the Form class inherits from its parent classes.
The properties, or members , of a class that may be inherited can be limited by including an access modifier in their declaration. Within the Visual Studio .NET environment are four access modifiers you should be aware of:
The Visual Studio .NET development environment includes hundreds of classes, and you will develop many more for each project. In order to provide organization and structure to what could rapidly become an unmanageable number of classes, the development environment makes use of the concept of a namespace . This is a hierarchical naming system in which classes may be grouped as required.
The standard naming convention for creation of a namespace is as
An example of this would be the creation of a namespace for this
is the child
namespace of the parent
namespace. If you
created a class,
, within the
namespace, the class would be designated as
. A separate
class could exist within a different namespace, such as in
. These are unrelated classes
sharing only the common class
The root namespace including all others is the System namespace. This contains the Object class ( System.Object ), which is the parent for all other classes in the .NET Framework. System also includes other objects and namespaces that we will deal with, such as the System.Drawing namespace, which includes classes used to create graphical elements, and the System.Windows namespace, which includes the System.Windows.Forms child namespace that includes the classes used to create Windows form objects.
Now that you are familiar with the basics of the conceptual side of the .NET development environment, we will examine the creation of a form within the Windows Form Designer.