pPage


Teach Yourself Visual C++ 6 in 21 Days


- 17 -
Sharing Your Functionality with Other Applications--Creating DLLs

  • Why Create DLLs?
    • Creating and Using DLLs
    • Designing DLLs
  • Creating and Using an MFC Extension DLL
    • Creating the MFC Extension DLL
    • Adapting the Test Application
    • Changing the DLL
  • Creating and Using a Regular DLL
    • Creating the Regular DLL
    • Adapting the Test Application
  • Summary
  • Q&A
  • Workshop
    • Quiz
    • Exercises



Yesterday you learned how you could create a set of functionality that might be useful for multiple applications and how you could package it in a library file that could be linked into those applications. Today you will learn how to do this same thing, only with a much more dynamic package.

Often, a family of applications will have some functionality in common. When you place this shared functionality into DLLs instead of library modules, all the applications can use the same functionality with only a single copy of the functionality distributed in the form of DLLs, instead of duplicating the same functionality in each of the applications. This method saves disk space on any systems where the applications are installed.

Today, you will learn

  • About the different types of DLLs that you can create with Visual C++ and how to determine which type best suits your needs.

  • How to build two of these types of DLLs and the different approaches for the various DLL types.

  • How to use the functionality for both of these types of DLLs in a Visual C++ application.

  • How to determine when an application needs to be relinked when you make modifications to a DLL that is used by the application.

Why Create DLLs?

Dynamic link libraries (DLL) were introduced by Microsoft back in the early days of Windows. DLLs are similar to library modules in that they both contain sets of functionality that have been packaged for use by applications. The difference is when the applications link to the library. With a library module (LIB), the application is linked to the functionality in the library during the compile and build process. The functionality contained in the library file becomes part of the application executable file. With a DLL, the application links to the functionality in the library file when the application is run. The library file remains a separate file that is referenced and called by the application.

There are several reasons for creating DLLs instead of library module files. First, you can reduce the size of the application executable files by placing functionality that is used by multiple applications into DLLs that are shared by all of the applications. You can update and modify functionality in the DLLs without having to update the application executable (assuming that the exported interface for the DLL doesn't change). Finally, you can use DLLs with just about any other Windows programming language, which makes your functionality available to a wider number of programmers, not just fellow Visual C++ programmers.

Creating and Using DLLs

DLLs are library files with compiled code that can be used by other applications. The DLLs expose certain functions and classes to these applications by exporting the function. When a function is exported, it is added to a table that is included in the DLL. This table lists the location of all exported functions contained in the DLL, and it is used to locate and call each of these functions. Any functions that are not exported are not added to this table, and they cannot be seen or called by any outside application or DLL.

An application can call the functions in the DLL in two ways. The more involved method of calling these functions is to look up the location of the desired function in the DLL and get a pointer to this function. The pointer can then be used to call the function.

The other, much easier way (and the only way that you'll use in any of the examples in this book) is to link the application with the LIB file that is created with the DLL. This LIB file is treated by the linker as a standard library file, just like the one that you cre-ated yesterday. However, this LIB file contains stubs for each of the exported functions in the DLL. A stub is a pseudo-function that has the same name and argument list as the real function. In the interior of the function stub is a small amount of code that calls the real function in the DLL, passing all of the arguments that were passed to the stub. This allows you to treat the functions in the DLL as if they were part of the application code and not as a separate file.


NOTE: The LIB file for a DLL is automatically created for the DLL during the compiling of the DLL. There is nothing extra that you need to do to create it.


TIP: Not only is it easier to create your applications using the LIB files for any DLLs that you will be using, but also it can be safer when running the application. When you use the LIB files, any DLLs that are used by your application are loaded into memory the moment the application is started. If any of the DLLs are missing, the user is automatically informed of the problem by Windows, and your application does not run. If you don't use the LIB files, then you are responsible for loading the DLL into memory and handling any errors that occur if the DLL cannot be found.

There are two types of DLLs that you can easily create using Visual C++. These two types are MFC extension DLLs and regular DLLs.


NOTE: You can create other types of DLLs using Visual C++. All these other types of DLLs involve a significant amount of ActiveX functionality, so they are beyond the scope of this book. If you need to build ActiveX in-process server DLLs, or other types of ActiveX DLLs, I recommend that you find an advanced book on Visual C++ that provides significant coverage for these topics.

MFC Extension DLLs

MFC DLLs are the easiest to code and create because you can treat them just like any other collection of classes. For any classes that you want to export from the DLL, the only thing that you need to add is the AFX_EXT_CLASS macro in the class declaration, as follows:

class AFX_EXT_CLASS CMyClass { . . . }; 

This macro exports the class, making it accessible to Visual C++ applications. You need to include this macro in the header file that is used by the applications that will use the DLL, where it will import the class from the DLL so that it can be used.

The one drawback to creating MFC extension DLLs is that they cannot be used by any other programming languages. They can be used with other C++ compilers as long as the compiler supports MFC (such as with Borland's and Symantec's C++ compilers).

Regular DLLs

The other type of DLL is a regular DLL. This type of DLL exports standard functions from the DLL, not C++ classes. As a result, this type of DLL can require a little more thought and planning than an MFC extension DLL. Once inside the DLL, you can use classes all you want, but you must provide straight function calls to the external applications.

To export a function, declare it as an export function by preceding the function name with

extern "C" <function type> PASCAL EXPORT <function declaration> 

Include all this additional stuff in both the header file function prototype and the actual source code. The extern "C" portion declares that this is a standard C function call so that the C++ name mangler does not mangle the function name. PASCAL tells the compiler that all function arguments are to be passed in PASCAL order, which places the arguments on the stack in the reverse order from how they are normally placed. Finally, EXPORT tells the compiler that this function is to be exported from the DLL and can be called outside the DLL.

The other thing that you need to do to export the functions from your DLL is to add all the exported function names to the DEF file for the DLL project. This file is used to build the stub LIB file and the export table in the DLL. It contains the name of the DLL, or library, a brief description of the DLL, and the names of all functions that are to be exported. This file has to follow a specific format, so you should not modify the default DEF file that is automatically created by the DLL Wizard other than to add exported function names. A typical DEF file follows:

LIBRARY     "mydll" DESCRIPTION `mydll Windows Dynamic Link Library' EXPORTS     ; Explicit exports can go here     MyFunc1     MyFunc2 

If you are using MFC classes in your regular DLLs, you need to call the AFX_MANAGE_STATE macro as the first line of code in all exported functions. This is necessary to make the exported functions threadsafe, which allows your class functions to be called simultaneously by two or more programs (or threads). The AFX_MANAGE_STATE macro takes a single argument, a pointer to a AFX_MODULE_STATE structure, which can be retrieved by calling the AfxGetStaticModuleState function. A typical exported function that uses MFC looks like the following:

extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT MyFunc(...) {     AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState());     // normal function body here . . . } 

Designing DLLs

When you are designing your DLLs, you should be aware that any of the functions in your DLLs can be called simultaneously by multiple applications all running at the same time. As a result, all the functionality in any DLLs that you create must be threadsafe.

All variables that hold any values beyond each individual function call must be held and maintained by the application and not the DLL. Any application variables that must be manipulated by the DLL must be passed in to the DLL as one of the function arguments. Any global variables that are manipulated within the DLL may be swapped with variables from other application processes while the function is running, leading to unpredictable results.

Creating and Using an MFC Extension DLL

To see how easy it is to create and use an MFC extension DLL, you'll convert the library module that you created yesterday into an MFC extension DLL today. After you see how easy it is, and what types of changes you have to make to use the DLL, you'll then reimplement the same functionality as a regular DLL so that you can get an understanding of the different approaches that are necessary with the two DLL styles.

Creating the MFC Extension DLL

To convert the library module you created yesterday into an MFC extension DLL, you need to create a new MFC DLL Wizard project, specifying that the project is an MFC extension DLL. Copy the source code and header files for the line and drawing classes into the project directory. Load the files for the line and drawing classes into the current project. Add the AFX_EXT_CLASS macro to the drawing class. Finally, move the color table from a global static table to a local variable inside the function that creates the squiggles.

To create this DLL, start a new project. Give the project a suitable name, such as ModArtDll, and specify that the project is an MFC AppWizard (DLL) project, as in Figure 17.1. Once in the DLL Wizard, specify that the DLL is an MFC Extension DLL, as in Figure 17.2.

FIGURE 17.1. Selecting the MFC DLL Wizard.

Once you create the DLL shell, open the file explorer and copy the source code and header files for the line and drawing classes (line.cpp, line.h, ModArt.cpp, and ModArt.h) from the library module project you created yesterday into the project directory that you just created. Add all four of these files to the project. Both classes should appear in the Class View of the workspace pane.

FIGURE 17.2. Specifying the DLL type.

Open the header file containing the definition of the drawing class. Add the AFX_EXT_CLASS macro to the class declaration as shown in Listing 17.1. Remove the color table variable from the class declaration also.

LISTING 17.1. THE MODIFIED CModArt CLASS DECLARATION.

1:  class AFX_EXT_CLASS CModArt : public CObject 2:  { 3:  public: 4:      void NewDrawing(); 5:      virtual void Serialize(CArchive &ar); 6:      void Draw(CDC *pDC); 7:      void ClearDrawing(); 8:      void SetRect(CRect rDrawArea); 9:      CModArt(); 10:     virtual ~CModArt(); 11: 12: private: 13:     void NewLine(); 14:     CRect m_rDrawArea; 15:     CObArray m_oaLines; 16: }; 

You cannot have public static tables in DLLs, so you cannot declare the color table as a public, static member of the drawing class, as it was yesterday. As a result, you'll move it to a local variable in the NewLine member function. Edit the NewLine function to add this local variable and to reset the function to behave as it did in its initial incarnation, as in Listing 17.2.

LISTING 17.2. THE CModArt NewLine FUNCTION.

1:  void CModArt::NewLine() 2:  { 3:      int lNumLines; 4:      int lCurLine; 5:      int nCurColor; 6:      UINT nCurWidth; 7:      CPoint pTo; 8:      CPoint pFrom; 9: 10:     // Normalize the rectangle before determining the width and height 11:     m_rDrawArea.NormalizeRect(); 12:     // get the area width and height 13:     int lWidth = m_rDrawArea.Width(); 14:     int lHeight = m_rDrawArea.Height(); 15: 16:     COLORREF crColors[8] = { 17:     RGB(   0,   0,   0),    // Black 18:     RGB(   0,   0, 255),    // Blue 19:     RGB(   0, 255,   0),    // Green 20:     RGB(   0, 255, 255),    // Cyan 21:     RGB( 255,   0,   0),    // Red 22:     RGB( 255,   0, 255),    // Magenta 23:     RGB( 255, 255,   0),    // Yellow 24:     RGB( 255, 255, 255)     // White 25:     }; 26: 27:     // Determine the number of parts to this squiggle 28:     lNumLines = rand() % 100; 29:     // Are there any parts to this squiggle? 30:     if (lNumLines > 0) 31:     { 32:         // Determine the color 33:         nCurColor = rand() % 8; 34:         // Determine the pen width 35:         nCurWidth = (rand() % 8) + 1; 36:         // Determine the starting point for the squiggle 37:         pFrom.x = (rand() % lWidth) + m_rDrawArea.left; 38:         pFrom.y = (rand() % lHeight) + m_rDrawArea.top; 39:         // Loop through the number of segments 40:         for (lCurLine = 0; lCurLine < lNumLines; lCurLine++) 41:         { 42:             // Determine the end point of the segment 43:             pTo.x = ((rand() % 20) - 10) + pFrom.x; 44:             pTo.y = ((rand() % 20) - 10) + pFrom.y; 45:             // Create a new CLine object 46:             CLine *pLine = new CLine(pFrom, pTo, nCurWidth,                          ÂcrColors[nCurColor]); 47:             try 48:             { 49: // Add the new line to the object array 50:                 m_oaLines.Add(pLine); 51:             } 52:             // Did we run into a memory exception? 53:             catch (CMemoryException* perr) 54:             { 55:                 // Display a message for the user, giving him the 56:                 // bad news 57:                 AfxMessageBox("Out of memory", MB_ICONSTOP | MB_OK); 58:                 // Did we create a line object? 59:                 if (pLine) 60:                 { 61:                     // Delete it 62:                     delete pLine; 63:                     pLine = NULL; 64:                 } 65:                 // Delete the exception object 66:                 perr->Delete(); 67:             } 68:             // Set the starting point to the end point 69:             pFrom = pTo; 70:         } 71:     } 72: } 

After making these changes to the drawing class, you are ready to compile your DLL. Once you compile the DLL, switch over to the file explorer, find the DLL in the debug subdirectory under the project directory, and copy the DLL to the debug directory in the test application project directory.

Adapting the Test Application

To adapt the test application to use the DLL, open the test application project that you created yesterday. You are going to delete the library module that you created yesterday and add the LIB file that was created with the DLL. You are also going to change the header file that is included for the drawing class. After making these two changes, your test application will be ready to use with the DLL.

To delete the library module from the project, open the File View in the workspace pane. Select the LIB file from the list of project files and press the Delete key. Once you delete the library file from the project, select Project | Add To Project | Files from the main menu. Specify the Library Files (.lib) file type, and then navigate to the debug directory of the DLL project. Select the LIB file that was created with your DLL, in this case, ModArtDll.lib. Click OK to add the file to the project.

Once you add the DLL's LIB file, edit the source-code files for the document, view, and application classes, changing the include of the drawing class to point to the project directory of the DLL, as in line 7 in Listing 17.3.

LISTING 17.3. THE CTestAppDoc INCLUDES.

1: // TestAppDoc.cpp : implementation of the CTestAppDoc class 2: // 3: 4: #include "stdafx.h" 5: #include "TestApp.h" 6: 7: #include "..\ModArtDll\ModArt.h" 8: #include "TestAppDoc.h" 

After making this change to all three source-code files, you are ready to compile and run your test application. You should find your test application running just like it did yesterday, only generating shorter squiggles and using only the eight colors in the color table.

Changing the DLL

Now that you have the test application running with the DLL, you'll make the same changes to the DLL that you made to the library module yesterday. You'll increase the number of squiggles that can be included in a drawing, increase the possible length of each squiggle, and generate any number of colors for use in the squiggles.

To make these changes, switch back to the DLL project. Increase the number of lines that may be generated in the NewDrawing member function of the drawing class. Increase the possible length of the squiggles in the NewLine member function, and add the random colors back in, as in Listing 17.4.

LISTING 17.4. THE MODIFIED CModArt NewLine FUNCTION.

1:  void CModArt::NewLine() 2:  { 3:      int lNumLines; 4:      int lCurLine; 5:  //  int nCurColor; 6:      UINT nCurWidth; 7:      CPoint pTo; 8:      CPoint pFrom; 9:      int cRed; 10:     int cBlue; 11:     int cGreen; 12: 13:     // Normalize the rectangle before determining the width and height 14:     m_rDrawArea.NormalizeRect(); 15:     // get the area width and height 16:     int lWidth = m_rDrawArea.Width(); 17:     int lHeight = m_rDrawArea.Height(); 18: 19: //    COLORREF crColors[8] = { 20: //    RGB(   0,   0,   0),    // Black 21: //    RGB(   0,   0, 255),    // Blue 22: //    RGB(   0, 255,   0),    // Green 23: //    RGB(   0, 255, 255),    // Cyan 24: //    RGB( 255,   0,   0),    // Red 25: //    RGB( 255,   0, 255),    // Magenta 26: //    RGB( 255, 255,   0),    // Yellow 27: //    RGB( 255, 255, 255)     // White 28: //    }; 29: 30:     // Determine the number of parts to this squiggle 31:     lNumLines = rand() % 200; 32:     // Are there any parts to this squiggle? 33:     if (lNumLines > 0) 34:     { 35:         // Determine the color 36: //      nCurColor = rand() % 8; 37:         cRed = rand() % 256; 38:         cBlue = rand() % 256; 39:         cGreen = rand() % 256; 40:         // Determine the pen width 41:         nCurWidth = (rand() % 8) + 1; 42:         // Determine the starting point for the squiggle 43:         pFrom.x = (rand() % lWidth) + m_rDrawArea.left; 44:         pFrom.y = (rand() % lHeight) + m_rDrawArea.top; 45:         // Loop through the number of segments 46:         for (lCurLine = 0; lCurLine < lNumLines; lCurLine++) 47:         { 48:             // Determine the end point of the segment 49:             pTo.x = ((rand() % 20) - 10) + pFrom.x; 50:             pTo.y = ((rand() % 20) - 10) + pFrom.y; 51:             // Create a new CLine object 52:             CLine *pLine = new CLine(pFrom, pTo, nCurWidth,                          ÂRGB(cRed, cGreen, cBlue)); 53:             try 54:             { 55:                 // Add the new line to the object array 56:                 m_oaLines.Add(pLine); 57:             } 58:             // Did we run into a memory exception? 59:             catch (CMemoryException* perr) 60:             { 61:                 // Display a message for the user, giving him the 62:                 // bad news 63:                 AfxMessageBox("Out of memory", MB_ICONSTOP | MB_OK); 64:                 // Did we create a line object? 65:                 if (pLine) 66:                 { 67:                     // Delete it 68:                     delete pLine; 69:                     pLine = NULL; 70:                 } 71:                 // Delete the exception object 72:                 perr->Delete(); 73:             } 74:             // Set the starting point to the end point 75:             pFrom = pTo; 76:         } 77:     } 78: } 

After making these changes, compile the DLL again. Once you compile the DLL, switch to the file explorer and copy the DLL into the debug directory of the test application again. Once you copy the DLL, run the test application from the Start | Run Taskbar, as in Figure 17.3. You should find that the application has been updated, and it is now including more squiggles and using many different colors.

FIGURE 17.3. Starting the sample application.

Creating and Using a Regular DLL

You might think that you broke the rules about using variables that are not owned by the application in a DLL when you created and used the MFC extension DLL. Well, you didn't. The instance of the drawing class was a member of the document class in the test application. It was created and maintained by the application, not the DLL. Now that you are turning your attention to implementing the same functionality as a regular DLL, this will become clearer.

To convert the MFC extension DLL into a regular DLL, you'll have to convert the drawing class into a series of regular function calls. In the course of making this conversion, the object array must become a member variable of the application document class and must be passed as an argument to every exported function in the DLL.

Creating the Regular DLL

To convert the MFC extension DLL into a regular DLL, you have to start a new project. Visual C++ has to build a project that tells the compiler what type of file it's creating. You can create this new project using the same steps you used to create the MFC extension DLL project, but specify on the DLL Wizard that you are creating a regular DLL. (You can leave the wizard at the default settings.) Once you create the project, you can copy the line and drawing class source code and header files into the project directory and add these files to the project. Once you add these files to the project, you need to begin the process of converting the drawing class into a series of straight function calls.

Altering the Header File

To start with, you need to radically alter the header file for the drawing class so that it will work for a regular DLL. You have to eliminate every trace of the actual class from the header file, leaving only the function calls. All of these functions must be passed in any objects that they need to work with. (Every function will need to be passed the object array as one of its arguments.) Next, you need to slightly modify all the function names so that the compiler does not get mixed up and call a member function of any class by mistake (such as the Serialize function). Finally, each of the public functions must be declared as an exportable function. Making these changes to the header file, you end up replacing the entire class declaration with the function prototypes in Listing 17.5.

LISTING 17.5. THE MODIFIED ModArt HEADER FILE.

1: extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtNewDrawing(CRect pRect,          ÂCObArray *poaLines); 2: extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtSerialize(CArchive &ar,          ÂCObArray *poaLines); 3: extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtDraw(CDC *pDC, CObArray *poaLines); 4: extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtClearDrawing(CObArray *poaLines); 5: void NewLine(CRect pRect, CObArray *poaLines);  


NOTE: Notice that the object array is always passed as a pointer to each of these functions. Because these functions are adding and removing objects from the array, they need to work with the actual array and not a copy of it.

Adapting the Drawing Generation Functions

Moving to the source-code file, you need to make numerous small yet significant changes to these functions. Starting with the NewDrawing function, you need to pass in the CRect object to get the drawing area. You dropped the function for setting the drawing area because you have no local variables in which you can hold this object. As a result, you are better off passing it to the drawing generation functions. The other change is where you pass in the object array as another argument to the function. You aren't doing anything with either of these arguments in this function, just passing them along to the squiggle generating function. The other alteration in this function is the addition of the AFX_MANAGE_STATE macro as the first line in the body of the function. After making these changes, the NewDrawing function will look like the one in Listing 17.6.

LISTING 17.6. THE ModArtNewDrawing FUNCTION.

1:  extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtNewDrawing(CRect pRect,          ÂCObArray *poaLines) 2:  { 3:      AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState()); 4:      // normal function body here 5:      int lNumLines; 6:      int lCurLine; 7: 8:      // Initialize the random number generator 9:      srand((unsigned)time(NULL)); 10:     // Determine how many lines to create 11:     lNumLines = rand() % 50; 12:     // Are there any lines to create? 13:     if (lNumLines > 0) 14:     { 15:         // Loop through the number of lines 16:         for (lCurLine = 0; lCurLine < lNumLines; lCurLine++) 17:         { 18:             // Create the new line 19:             NewLine(pRect, poaLines); 20:         } 21:     } 22: } 

Another change that is required in the NewDrawing function is the addition of the random number generator seeding on line 9. Because there is no class constructor any more, you cannot seed the random number generator in it. Therefore, the next logical place to add this is in the NewDrawing function before any random numbers are generated.

On the NewLine function, the changes are more extensive. First, the CRect object and the object array are passed in as arguments. Second, because this is not an exported function, you do not need to add the AFX_MANAGE_STATE macro. Third, all the places where the CRect member variable is used must be changed to use the CRect that is passed as an argument to the function. Finally, when adding objects to the object array, you need to change this to use the object array pointer that was passed as an argument. Making these changes leaves you with the code in Listing 17.7.

LISTING 17.7. THE NewLine FUNCTION.

 1:   void NewLine(CRect pRect, CObArray *poaLines)  2:   {  3:       int lNumLines;  4:       int lCurLine;  5:   //  int nCurColor;  6:       UINT nCurWidth;  7:       CPoint pTo;  8:       CPoint pFrom;  9:       int cRed; 10:      int cBlue; 11:      int cGreen; 12:  13:      // Normalize the rectangle before determining the width and          Âheight 14:      pRect.NormalizeRect(); 15:      // get the area width and height 16:      int lWidth = pRect.Width(); 17:      int lHeight = pRect.Height(); 18:  19:  //    COLORREF crColors[8] = { 20:  //    RGB(   0,   0,   0),    // Black 21:  //    RGB(   0,   0, 255),    // Blue 22:  //    RGB(   0, 255,   0),    // Green 23:  //    RGB(   0, 255, 255),    // Cyan 24:  //    RGB( 255,   0,   0),    // Red 25:  //    RGB( 255,   0, 255),    // Magenta 26:  //    RGB( 255, 255,   0),    // Yellow 27:  //    RGB( 255, 255, 255)     // White 28:  //    }; 29:  30:      // Determine the number of parts to this squiggle 31:      lNumLines = rand() % 200; 32:      // Are there any parts to this squiggle? 33:      if (lNumLines > 0) 34:      { 35:          // Determine the color 36:  //      nCurColor = rand() % 8; 37:          cRed = rand() % 256; 38:          cBlue = rand() % 256; 39:          cGreen = rand() % 256; 40:          // Determine the pen width 41:          nCurWidth = (rand() % 8) + 1; 42:          // Determine the starting point for the squiggle 43:          pFrom.x = (rand() % lWidth) + pRect.left; 44:          pFrom.y = (rand() % lHeight) + pRect.top; 45:          // Loop through the number of segments 46:          for (lCurLine = 0; lCurLine < lNumLines; lCurLine++) 47:          { 48:              // Determine the end point of the segment 49:              pTo.x = ((rand() % 20) - 10) + pFrom.x; 50:              pTo.y = ((rand() % 20) - 10) + pFrom.y; 51:              // Create a new CLine object 52:              CLine *pLine = new CLine(pFrom, pTo, nCurWidth,                           ÂRGB(cRed, cGreen, cBlue)); 53:              try 54:              { 55:                  // Add the new line to the object array 56:                  poaLines->Add(pLine); 57:              } 58:              // Did we run into a memory exception? 59:              catch (CMemoryException* perr) 60:              { 61:                  // Display a message for the user, giving him the 62:                  // bad news 63:                  AfxMessageBox("Out of memory", MB_ICONSTOP | MB_OK); 64:                  // Did we create a line object? 65:                  if (pLine) 66:                  { 67:                      // Delete it 68:                      delete pLine; 69:                      pLine = NULL; 70:                  } 71:                  // Delete the exception object 72:                  perr->Delete(); 73:              } 74:              // Set the starting point to the end point 75:              pFrom = pTo; 76:          } 77:      } 78:  } 

Adapting the Other Functions

Making the necessary changes to the other functions is less involved than the changes to the drawing generation functions. With the rest of the functions, you must add a pointer to the object array as a function argument and then alter the uses of the array to use the pointer instead of the no longer existing member variable. You also need to add the AFX_MANAGE_STATE macro as the first line in each of the remaining functions. This leaves you with the functions shown in Listings 17.8, 17.9, and 17.10.

LISTING 17.8. THE ModArtDraw FUNCTION.

1:  extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtDraw(CDC *pDC, CObArray *poaLines) 2:  { 3:      AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState()); 4:      // normal function body here 5:      // Get the number of lines in the object array 6:      int liCount = poaLines.GetSize(); 7:      int liPos; 8: 9:      // Are there any objects in the array? 10:     if (liCount) 11:     { 12:         // Loop through the array, drawing each object 13:         for (liPos = 0; liPos < liCount; liPos++) 14:             ((CLine*)poaLines[liPos])->Draw(pDC); 15:     } 16: } 

LISTING 17.9. THE ModArtSerialize FUNCTION.

1: extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtSerialize(CArchive &ar,          ÂCObArray *poaLines) 2: { 3:     AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState()); 4:     // normal function body here 5:     // Pass the archive object on to the array 6:     poaLines.Serialize(ar); 7: } 

Listing 17.10. The MODARTCLEARDRAWING function.

1:  extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtClearDrawing(CObArray *poaLines) 2:  { 3:      AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState()); 4:      // Normal function body here 5:      // Get the number of lines in the object array 6:      int liCount = poaLines.GetSize(); 7:      int liPos; 8: 9:      // Are there any objects in the array? 10:     if (liCount) 11:     { 12:         // Loop through the array, deleting each object 13:         for (liPos = 0; liPos < liCount; liPos++) 14:             delete poaLines[liPos]; 15:         // Reset the array 16:         poaLines.RemoveAll(); 17:     } 18: } 

Once you make the changes to these functions, the only thing remaining is to remove all code for the class constructor and destructor, along with the code for the SetRect function.

Building the Module Definition File

Before you compile the DLL, you need to add all the function names to the module definition file. You can find this file in the list of source-code files in the File View of the workspace pane. When you open this file, you'll find that it briefly describes the module that you are building in generic terms. You'll see a place at the bottom of the file where you can add the exports for the DLL. Edit this file, adding the exportable function names, as in Listing 17.11.

LISTING 17.11. THE DLL MODULE DEFINITION FILE.

1:  ; ModArtRDll.def : Declares the module parameters for the DLL 2: 3:  LIBRARY        "ModArtRDll" 4:  DESCRIPTION    `ModArtRDll Windows Dynamic Link Library' 5: 6:  EXPORTS 7:       ; Explicit exports can go here 8:       ModArtNewDrawing 9:       ModArtSerialize 10:      ModArtDraw 11:      ModArtClearDrawing 

You are now ready to compile your regular DLL. Once you compile the DLL, copy it into the debug directory of the test application.

Adapting the Test Application

To adapt the test application to use the new DLL that you have just created, you need to make a number of changes. First, you need to change the member variable of the document class from an instance of the drawing class to the object array. Next, you need to change the include in the document and view source code to include the header from the new DLL instead of the header from the old DLL. (You can completely remove the include in the application source-code file.) Drop the DLL LIB file and add the LIB file for the new DLL to the project. Change all of the drawing class function calls to call functions in the new DLL instead. Finally, change the GetDrawing function in the document class so that it returns a pointer to the object array, instead of the drawing object.

You can start making these changes by deleting the LIB file from the test application project. Once you delete the file, add the LIB file for the new DLL to the project by selecting Project | Add To Project | Files from the main menu.

Once you switch the LIB files in the project, edit the source code for the document and view classes to change the include statement, changing the project directory to the new DLL project directory. You can edit the application class source-code file and remove the include from this file. Because you are not creating any instances of the drawing class, the application file doesn't need to know about anything in the DLL.

Once you make all those changes, open the header file for the document class. Edit the document class declaration: Change the function type of the GetDrawing function to return a pointer to an object array, remove the drawing class variable, and add an object array variable, as in Listing 17.12. Make only these three changes; do not change anything else in the class declaration.

LISTING 17.12. THE CTestAppDoc CLASS DECLARATION.

1:  class CTestAppDoc : public CDocument 2:  { 3:  protected: // create from serialization only 4:      CTestAppDoc(); 5:      DECLARE_DYNCREATE(CTestAppDoc) 6:  . 7:  . 8:  . 9:  // Implementation 10: public: 11:     CObArray* GetDrawing(); 12:     virtual ~CTestAppDoc(); 13: . 14: . 15: . 16: private: 17:     CObArray m_oaLines; 18: }; 
Modifying the Document Functions

Now that you've made the general changes to the test application, it's time to start making the functionality changes. All the calls to a class method of the drawing object must be changed to the appropriate function call in the new DLL.

The changes necessary in the OnNewDocument function consist of dropping the function call to pass the CRect to the drawing object and replacing the NewDocument function call with the new DLL function--in this instance, ModArtNewDrawing, as shown in line 19 in Listing 17.13.

LISTING 17.13. THE CTestAppDoc OnNewDocument FUNCTION.

1:  BOOL CTestAppDoc::OnNewDocument() 2:  { 3:      if (!CDocument::OnNewDocument()) 4:          return FALSE; 5: 6:      // TODO: add reinitialization code here 7:      // (SDI documents will reuse this document) 8: 9:      // Get the position of the view 10:     POSITION pos = GetFirstViewPosition(); 11:     // Did we get a valid position? 12:     if (pos != NULL) 13:     { 14:         // Get a pointer to the view 15:         CView* pView = GetNextView(pos); 16:         RECT lWndRect; 17:         // Get the display area rectangle 18:         pView->GetClientRect(&lWndRect); 19:         // Create a new drawing 20:         ModArtNewDrawing(lWndRect, &m_oaLines); 21:     } 22: 23:     return TRUE; 24: } 

In the Serialize function, change the drawing object Serialize function call to the new DLL serialization function--in this case, ModArtSerialize, as in Listing 17.14.

LISTING 17.14. THE CTestAppDoc Serialize FUNCTION.

1: void CTestAppDoc::Serialize(CArchive& ar) 2: { 3:     // Serialize the drawing 4:     ModArtSerialize(ar, &m_oaLines); 5: } 

For the DeleteContents function, you need to change the call to the ClearDrawing function to the new DLL function, ModArtClearDrawing, as in line 5 of Listing 17.15.

LISTING 17.15. THE CTestAppDoc DeleteContents FUNCTION.

1: void CTestAppDoc::DeleteContents() 2: { 3:     // TODO: Add your specialized code here and/or call the base class 4:     // Delete the drawing 5:     ModArtClearDrawing(&m_oaLines); 6: 7:     CDocument::DeleteContents(); 8: } 

Finally, for the GetDrawing function, you need to change the function declaration to designate that it's returning a pointer to an object array, just as you did in the header file. Next, you need to change the variable that is being returned to the object array variable that you added to the header file, as in Listing 17.16.

LISTING 17.16. THE CTestAppDoc GetDrawing FUNCTION.

1: CObArray* CTestAppDoc::GetDrawing() 2: { 3:     // Return the drawing object 4:     return &m_oaLines; 5: } 

Modifying the View Functions

Switching to the view class, there's only one simple change to make to the OnDraw function. In this function, you need to change the type of pointer retrieved from the GetDrawing function from a drawing object to an object array object, as in line 9 of Listing 17.17. Next, call the DLL function, ModArtDraw, to perform the drawing on the window, as shown in line 11.

LISTING 17.17. THE CTestAppView OnDraw FUNCTION.

1:  void CTestAppView::OnDraw(CDC* pDC) 2:  { 3:      CModTestAppDoc* pDoc = GetDocument(); 4:      ASSERT_VALID(pDoc); 5: 6:      // TODO: add draw code for native data here 7: 8:      // Get the drawing object 9:      CObArray* m_oaLines = pDoc->GetDrawing(); 10:     // Draw the drawing 11:     ModArtDraw(pDC, m_oaLines); 12: } 

After making all these changes to the test application, you are ready to compile and test it. You should find that the application is working just as it did with the previous DLL. You can also play around with it, going back and changing the DLL, copying the new DLL into the debug directory for the test application, and seeing how the changes are reflected in the behavior of the test application.


CAUTION: The particular example of a regular DLL that you developed in this exercise is still not usable by other programming languages. The reason is that you are passing MFC classes as the arguments for each of the DLL's functions. This still limits the usage to other applications that are built using MFC. To make this DLL truly portable, you need to pass the bare-bones structures instead of the classes (such as the RECT structure instead of the CRect class) and then convert the structures to the classes inside the DLL.

Summary

Today you learned about two more ways that you can package your functionality for other programmers. You learned how you can easily package your classes as an MFC extension DLL and how easily it can be used by a Visual C++ application. You saw how you can make changes to the DLL without having to recompile the applications that use it. You also learned what's involved in creating a regular DLL that can be used with other, non-Visual C++ applications. You saw how you needed to convert the exported classes from the DLL into standard C-style functions and what's involved in adapting an application to use this style of DLL.

Q&A

Q How can I convert the regular DLL so that it can be used by non-Visual C++ applications?

A First, you have to make all the arguments to the functions use the bare-bones structures, instead of the MFC classes. For instance, to convert the ModArtNewDrawing function, change it to receive the RECT structure instead of the CRect class and also to receive a generic pointer instead of a pointer to an object array. You have to make the conversions to the appropriate classes in the DLL, as in lines 4 through 9 in Listing 17.18.

LISTING 17.18. THE ModArtNewDrawing FUNCTION.

1:  extern "C" void PASCAL EXPORT ModArtNewDrawing(RECT spRect,          ÂLPVOID lpoaLines) 2:  { 3:      AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState()); 4:      CRect pRect; 5:      pRect.top = spRect.top; 6:      pRect.left = spRect.left; 7:      pRect.right = spRect.right; 8:      pRect.bottom = spRect.bottom; 9:      CObArray* poaLines = (CObArray*)lpoaLines; 10:     // Normal function body here 11:     int m_lNumLines; 12:     int m_lCurLine; 13: 14:     // Initialize the random number generator 15:     srand((unsigned)time(NULL)); 16:     // Determine how many lines to create 17:     m_lNumLines = rand() % 50; 18:     // Are there any lines to create? 19:     if (m_lNumLines > 0) 20:     { 21:         // Loop through the number of lines 22:         for (m_lCurLine = 0; m_lCurLine < m_lNumLines; m_lCurLine++) 23:         { 24:             // Create the new line 25:             NewLine(pRect, poaLines); 26:         } 27:     } 28: } 
You also have to add functions to create and destroy the object array, with the application storing the object array as a generic pointer as in Listing 17.19.

LISTING 17.19. THE ModArtInit FUNCTION.

1: extern "C" LPVOID PASCAL EXPORT ModArtInit() 2: { 3:     AFX_MANAGE_STATE(AfxGetStaticModuleState()); 4:     // Create the object array 5:     return (LPVOID)new CObArray; 6: } 
Q When do I need to recompile the applications that use my DLLs?

A Whenever you change any of the exported function calls. Changing, adding, or removing arguments to any of these functions would mean recompiling the applications that use the DLL. If you are working with an MFC extension DLL, the applications that use the DLL need to be recompiled if the public interface for the exported classes change or a new function or variable is added or removed. It doesn't matter if the application isn't using any of the functions that were changed; it's still good practice to recompile the applications, just to be sure.

Workshop

The Workshop provides quiz questions to help you solidify your understanding of the material covered and exercises to provide you with experience in using what you've learned. The answers to the quiz questions and exercises are provided in Appendix B, "Answers."

Quiz

1. What kind of DLL do you have to create to make classes in the DLL available to applications?

2. What do you have to add to the class to export it from a DLL?

3. What kind of DLL can be used with other programming languages?

4. If you make changes in a DLL, do you have to recompile the applications that use the DLL?

5. What function does the LIB file provide for a DLL?

Exercises

1. Separate the line class into its own MFC extension DLL and use it with the second (regular) DLL.

2. Alter the line class DLL so that it uses a consistent line width for all lines.




© Copyright, Macmillan Computer Publishing. All rights reserved.



Sams teach yourself Visual C++ 6 in 21 days
Sams Teach Yourself C in 21 Days (6th Edition)
ISBN: 0672324482
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 1998
Pages: 31

Similar book on Amazon

flylib.com © 2008-2017.
If you may any questions please contact us: flylib@qtcs.net