property Ribbon.ToString as String
Loads or saves the Items collection using string representation (shortcut of Items.ToString property).

 TypeDescription 
   String A String expression that specifies the items to be added. The list of items is separated by , (comma) character, while sub-menus are include between () parenthesis. The [] brackets indicates the options to be applied on the item  
The ToString property of the control is equivalent with the ToString property of the Items object.

The ToString syntax in BNF notation:

<ToString> ::= <ITEMS>
<ITEMS> ::= <ITEM>["("<ITEMS>")"][","<ITEMS>]
<ITEM> ::= <CAPTION>[<OPTIONS>]
<OPTIONS> ::= "["<OPTION>"]"["["<OPTIONS>"]"]
<OPTION> ::= <PROPERTY>["="<VALUE>]
<PROPERTY> ::= "img" | "himg" | "sep" | "id" | "typ" | "group" | "chk" | "button" | "align" | "spchk" | "show" | "rad" | "dis" | "showdis" | "bld" | "itl" | "stk" | "und" | "bg" | "fg" | "edittype" | "edit" | "mask" | "border" | "editwidth" | "captionwidth" | "height" | "grp" | "tfi" | "ttp" | "min" | "max" | "tick" | "freq" | "ticklabel" | "small" | "large" | "spin" | "ettp" | "float" | "close" | "local" | "popupapp" | "itemspad" | "itemsbg" | "itemsbghot" | "itemsbgext" | "visible" | "tab" | "pad" | "bghot" | "bgsel" | "bgselhot" | "arrow" | "popupalign" | "popupoffset" | "popupat"

where the <CAPTION> is the HTML caption to be shown on the context menu item. The <VALUE> indicates the value of giving property.

 

Masking, (mask option)

For instance, the following input-mask ( ext-phone )

!(999) 000 0000;1;;select=1,empty,overtype,warning=invalid character,invalid=The value you entered isn't appropriate for the input mask <b>'<%mask%>'</b> specified for this field."

indicates the following:

The four parts of an input mask, or the Mask property supports up to four parts, separated by a semicolon (;). For instance, "`Time: `00:00:00;;0;overtype,warning=<fgcolor FF0000>invalid character,beep", indicates the pattern "00:00" with the prefix Time:, the masking character being the 0, instead _, the field enters in over-type mode, insert-type mode is not allowed, and the field beeps and displays a tooltip in red with the message invalid character when the user enters an invalid character. 

Input masks are made up one mandatory part and three optional parts, and each part is separated by a semicolon (;). If a part should use the semicolon (;) it must uses the \; instead

The purpose of each part is as follows:

  1. The first part (pattern) is mandatory. It includes the mask characters or string (series of characters) along with placeholders and literal data such as, parentheses, periods, and hyphens. 

    The following table lists the placeholder and literal characters for an input mask and explains how it controls data entry: 

     

    • #, a digit, +, - or space (entry not required).
    • 0, a digit (0 through 9, entry required; plus [+] and minus [-] signs not allowed).
    • 9, a digit or space (entry not required; plus and minus signs not allowed).
    • x, a lower case hexa character, [0-9],[a-f] ( entry required )
    • X, an upper case hexa character, [0-9],[A-F] ( entry required )
    • A, any letter, digit (entry required).
    • a, any letter, digit or space (entry optional).
    • L, any letter (entry require).
    • ?, any letter or space (entry optional).
    • &, any character or a space (entry required).
    • C, any character or a space (entry optional).
    • >, any letter, converted to uppercase (entry required).
    • <, any letter, converted to lowercase (entry required).
    • *, any characters combinations
    • { min,max } (Range), indicates a number range. The syntax {min,max} (Range), masks a number in the giving range. The min and max values should be positive integers. For instance the mask {0,255} masks any number between 0 and 255.
    • [...] (Alternative), masks any characters that are contained in the [] brackets. For instance, the [abcdA-D] mask any character: a,b,c,d,A,B,C,D
    • \, indicates the escape character
    • , ( ALT + 175 ) causes the characters that follow to be converted to uppercase, until ( ALT + 174 ) is found.
    • , ( ALT + 174 ) causes the characters that follow to be converted to lowercase, until ( ALT + 175 ) is found.
    • !, causes the input mask to fill from right to left instead of from left to right.

    Characters enclosed in double quotation ("" or ``) marks will be displayed literally. If this part should display/use the semicolon (;) character is should be included between double quotation ("" or ``) characters or as \; ( escape ).

     

  2. The second part is optional and refers to the embedded mask characters and how they are stored within the field. If the second part is set to 0 ( default, exClipModeLiteralsNone ), all characters are stored with the data, and if it is set to 1 (exClipModeLiteralsInclude), the literals are stored, not including the masking/placeholder characters, if 2 (exClipModeLiteralsExclude), just typed characters are stored, if 3(exClipModeLiteralsEscape), optional, required, editable and escaped entities are included. No double quoted text is included.
  3. The third part of the input mask is also optional and indicates a single character or space that is used as a placeholder. By default, the field uses the underscore (_). If you want to use another character, enter it in the third part of your mask. Only the first character is considered. If this part should display/use the semicolon (;) character is should be \; ( escape )
  4. The forth part of the input, indicates a list of options that can be applied to input mask, separated by comma(,) character. 

    The known options for the forth part are:

     

    • float, indicates that the field is edited as a decimal number, integer. The first part of the input mask specifies the pattern to be used for grouping and decimal separators, and - if negative numbers are supported. If the first part is empty, the float is formatted as indicated by current regional settings. For instance, "##;;;float" specifies a 2 digit number in float format. The grouping, decimal, negative and digits options are valid if the float option is present.

    • grouping=value, Character used to separate groups of digits to the left of the decimal. Valid only if float is present. For instance ";;;float,grouping=" indicates that no grouping is applied to the decimal number (LOCALE_STHOUSAND)
    • decimal=value, Character used for the decimal separator. Valid only if float is present. For instance ";;;float,grouping= ,decimal=\," indicates that the decimal number uses the space for grouping digits to the left, while for decimal separator the comma character is used (LOCALE_SDECIMAL)
    • negative=value, indicates whether the decimal number supports negative numbers. The value should be 0 or 1. 1 means negative numbers are allowed. Else 0 or missing, the negative numbers are not accepted. Valid only if float is present. 
    • digits=value, indicates the max number of fractional digits placed after the decimal separator. Valid only if float is present. For instance, ";;;float,digits=4" indicates a max 4 digits after decimal separator (LOCALE_IDIGITS)
    • password[=value], displays a black circle for any shown character. For instance, ";;;password", specifies that the field to be displayed as a password. If the value parameter is present, the first character in the value indicates the password character to be used. By default, the * password character is used for non-TrueType fonts, else the black circle character is used. For instance, ";;;password=*", specifies that the field to be displayed as a password, and use the * for password character. If the value parameter is missing, the default password character is used. 
    • right, aligns the characters to the right. For instance, "(999) 999-9999;;;right" displays and masks a telephone number aligned to the right. readonly, the editor is locked, user can not update the content, the caret is available, so user can copy the text, excepts the password fields. 
    • inserttype, indicates that the field enters in insert-type mode, if this is the first option found. If the forth part includes also the overtype option, it indicates that the user can toggle the insert/over-type mode using the Insert key. For instance, the "##:##;;0;inserttype,overtype", indicates that the field enter in insert-type mode, and over-type mode is allowed. The "##:##;;0;inserttype", indicates that the field enter in insert-type mode, and over-type mode is not allowed. 
    • overtype, indicates that the field enters in over-type mode, if this is the first option found. If the forth part includes also the inserttype option, it indicates that the user can toggle the insert/over-type mode using the Insert key. For instance, the "##:##;;0;overtype,inserttype", indicates that the field enter in over-type mode, and insert-type mode is allowed. The "##:##;;0;overtype", indicates that the field enter in over-type mode, and insert-type mode is not allowed.
    • nocontext, indicates that the field provides no context menu when user right clicks the field. For instance, ";;;password,nocontext" displays a password field, where the user can not invoke the default context menu, usually when a right click occurs.
    • beep, indicates whether a beep is played once the user enters an invalid character. For instance, "00:00;;;beep" plays a beep once the user types in invalid character, in this case any character that's not a digit.
    • warning=value, indicates the html message to be shown when the user enters an invalid character. For instance, "00:00:00;;;warning=invalid character" displays a "invalid character" tooltip once the user types in invalid character, in this case any character that's not a digit. The <%mask%> keyword in value, substitute the current mask of the field, while the <%value%> keyword substitutes the current value ( including the literals ). If this option should display/use the semicolon (;) character is should be \; ( escape )
    • invalid=value, indicates the html message to be displayed when the user enters an inappropriate value for the field. If the value is missing or empty, the option has no effect, so no validation is performed. If the value is a not-empty value, the validation is performed. If the value is single space, no message is displayed and the field is keep opened while the value is inappropriate. For instance, "!(999) 000 0000;;;invalid=The value you entered isn't appropriate for the input mask <b>'<%mask%>'</b> specified for this field." displays the "The value you entered isn't appropriate for the input mask '...' specified for this field." tooltip once the user leaves the field and it is not-valid ( for instance, the field includes entities required and uncompleted ). The <%mask%> keyword in value, substitute the current mask of the field, while the <%value%> keyword substitutes the current value ( including the literals ). If this option should display/use the semicolon (;) character is should be \; ( escape ). This option can be combined with empty, validateas. 
    • validateas=value, specifies the additional validation is done for the current field. If value is missing or 0 (exValidateAsNone), the option has no effect. The validateas option has effect only if the invalid option specifies a not-empty value. Currently, the value can be 1 (exValidateAsDate), which indicates that the field is validated as a date. For instance, having the mask "!00/00/0000;;0;empty,validateas=1,invalid=Invalid date!,warning=Invalid character!,select=4,overtype", indicates that the field is validate as date ( validateas=1 ). 
    • empty, indicates whether the field supports empty values. This option can be used with invalid flag, which indicates that the user can leave the field if it is empty. If empty flag is present, the field displays nothing if no entity is completed ( empty ). Once the user starts typing characters the current mask is displayed. For instance, having the mask "!(999) 000 0000;;;empty,select=4,overtype,invalid=invalid phone number,beep", it specifies an empty or valid phone to be entered.
    • select=value, indicates what to select from the field when it got the focus. The value could be 0 ( nothing, exSelectNoGotFocus ), 1 ( select all, exSelectAllGotFocus ), 2 ( select the first empty and editable entity of the field, exSelectEditableGotFocus ), 3 ( moves the cursor to the beginning of the first empty and editable entity of the field, exMoveEditableGotFocus ), 4 ( select the first empty, required and editable entity of the field, exSelectRequiredEditableGotFocus ), 5 ( moves the cursor to the beginning of the first empty, required and editable entity of the field, exMoveRequiredEditableGotFocus ). For modes 2 and 4 the entire field is selected if no matching entity is found. For instance, "`Time:`XX:XX;;;select=1" indicates that the entire field ( including the Time: prefix ) is selected once it get the focus. The "`Time:`XX:XX;;;select=3", moves the cursor to first X, if empty, the second if empty, and so on

Experimental:
multiline, specifies that the field supports multiple lines.
rich, specifies that the field displays a rich type editor. By default, the standard edit field is shown
disabled, shows as disabled the field.

Masking-Float, (mask, float option)

The [mask=<VALUE>] property may indicate the followings, if the [float=-1] is present

If the <VALUE> property is empty, the control takes the settings for the regional options like: Decimal Symbol , No. of digits after decimal, Digit grouping symbol.

Here are few samples:

The <VALUE>"-###.###.##0,00" filter floating point numbers a number for German settings ( "," is the decimal sign, "." is the thousands separator ). This format displays leading-zeros.

The <VALUE>"-###.###.###,##" filter floating point numbers a number for German settings ( "," is the decimal sign, "." is the thousands separator )

The <VALUE>"-###,###,###.##" filter floating point numbers a number for English settings ( "." is the decimal sign, "," is the thousands separator )

The <VALUE>"####" indicates a max-4 digit number ( positive ) without a decimal symbol and without digit grouping

The <VALUE>"-##.#" filters a floating point number from the -99.9 to 99.9 ( "." is the decimal sign,  no thousands separator )

The <VALUE>"#,###.##" filters a floating point number from the 0 to 9,999.99 with digit grouping ( "." is the decimal sign, "," is the thousands separator ).

Tick Label Expression, (ticklabel option)

For instance:

The The <VALUE> of [ticklabel] option is a formatted expression which result may include the HTML tags.

The The <VALUE> of [ticklabel] option indicates a formatting expression that may use the following predefined keywords:

The supported binary arithmetic operators are:

The supported unary boolean operators are:

The supported binary boolean operators are:

The supported binary boolean operators, all these with the same priority 0, are :

The supported ternary operators, all these with the same priority 0, are :

"expression ? true_part : false_part"

, while it executes and returns the true_part if the expression is true, else it executes and returns the false_part. For instance, the "%0 = 1 ? 'One' : (%0 = 2 ? 'Two' : 'not found')" returns 'One' if the value is 1, 'Two' if the value is 2, and 'not found' for any other value. A n-ary equivalent operation is the case() statement, which is available in newer versions of the component.

The supported n-ary operators are (with priority 5):

"expression array (c1,c2,c3,...cn)"

, where the c1, c2, ... are constant elements. The constant elements could be numeric, date or string expressions. For instance the "month(value)-1 array ('J','F','M','A','M','Jun','J','A','S','O','N','D')" is equivalent with "month(value)-1 case (default:''; 0:'J';1:'F';2:'M';3:'A';4:'M';5:'Jun';6:'J';7:'A';8:'S';9:'O';10:'N';11:'D')"

"expression in (c1,c2,c3,...cn)"

, where the c1, c2, ... are constant elements. The constant elements could be numeric, date or string expressions. For instance the "value in (11,22,33,44,13)" is equivalent with "(expression = 11) or (expression = 22) or (expression = 33) or (expression = 44) or (expression = 13)". The in operator is not a time consuming as the equivalent or version is, so when you have large number of constant elements it is recommended using the in operator. Shortly, if the collection of elements has 1000 elements the in operator could take up to 8 operations in order to find if an element fits the set, else if the or statement is used, it could take up to 1000 operations to check, so by far, the in operator could save time on finding elements within a collection.

"expression switch (default,c1,c2,c3,...,cn)"

, where the c1, c2, ... are constant elements, and the default is a constant element being returned when the element is not found in the collection. The constant elements could be numeric, date or string expressions.  The equivalent syntax is "%0 = c 1 ? c 1 : ( %0 = c 2 ? c 2 : ( ... ? . : default) )". The switch operator is very similar with the in operator excepts that the first element in the switch is always returned by the statement if the element is not found,  while the returned value is the value itself instead -1. For instance, the "%0 switch ('not found',1,4,7,9,11)" gets 1, 4, 7, 9 or 11, or 'not found' for any other value. As the in operator the switch operator uses binary searches for fitting the element, so it is quicker that iif (immediate if operator) alterative.

"expression case ([default : default_expression ; ] c1 : expression1 ; c2 : expression2 ; c3 : expression3 ;....)"

If the default part is missing, the case() operator returns the value of the expression if it is not found in the collection of cases ( c1, c2, ...). For instance, if the value of expression is not any of c1, c2, .... the default_expression is executed and returned. If the value of the expression is c1, then the case() operator executes and returns the expression1. The default, c1, c2, c3, ... must be constant elements as numbers, dates or strings. For instance, the "date(shortdate(value)) case (default:0 ; #1/1/2002#:1 ; #2/1/2002#:1; #4/1/2002#:1; #5/1/2002#:1)" indicates that only #1/1/2002#, #2/1/2002#,  #4/1/2002# and  #5/1/2002# dates returns 1, since the others returns 0. For instance the following sample specifies the hour being non-working for specified dates: "date(shortdate(value)) case(default:0;#4/1/2009# : hour(value) >= 6 and hour(value) <= 12 ; #4/5/2009# : hour(value) >= 7 and hour(value) <= 10 or hour(value) in(15,16,18,22); #5/1/2009# : hour(value) <= 8)" statement indicates the working hours for dates as follows:

The in, switch and case() use binary search to look for elements so they are faster then using iif and or expressions.

Obviously, the priority of the operations inside the expression is determined by ( ) parenthesis and the priority for each operator. 

The supported conversion unary operators are:

Other known operators for numbers are:

Other known operators for strings are:

Other known operators for dates are:

The The <VALUE> of [ticklabel] option can display labels using the following built-in HTML tags:

EBN String Format, (itemsbgext option)

The EBN String Format syntax in BNF notation is defined like follows:

<EBN> ::= <elements> | <root> "(" [<elements>] ")"
<elements> ::= <element> [ "," <elements> ]
<root> ::= "root" [ <attributes> ] | [ <attributes> ]
<element> ::= <anchor> [ <attributes> ] [ "(" [<elements>] ")" ]
<anchor> ::= "none" | "left" | "right" | "client" | "top" | "bottom"
<attributes> ::= "[" [<client> ","] <attribute> [ "," <attributes> ] "]"
<client> ::= <expression> | <expression> "," <expression> "," <expression> "," <expression>
<expression> ::= <number> | <number> "%"
<attribute> ::= <backcolor> | <text> | <wordwrap> | <align> | <pattern> | <patterncolor> | <frame> | <framethick> | <data> | <others>
<equal> ::= "="
<digit> ::= 0 | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9
<decimal> ::= <digit><decimal>
<hexadigit> ::= <digit> | "A" | "B"  "C" | "D" | "E"  "F"
<hexa> ::= <hexadigit><hexa>
<number> ::= <decimal> | "0x" <hexa>
<color> ::= <rgbcolor> | number
<rgbcolor> ::= "RGB" "(" <number> "," <number> "," <number> ")"
<string> ::= "`" <characters> "`" | "'" <characters> "'" | " <characters> "
<characters> ::= <char>|<characters>
<char> ::= <any_character_excepts_null>
<backcolor> ::= "back" <equal> <color>
<text> ::= "text" <equal> <string>
<align> ::= "align" <equal> <number>
<pattern> ::= "pattern" <equal> <number>
<patterncolor> ::= "patterncolor" <equal> <color>
<frame> ::= "frame" <equal> <color>
<data> ::= "data" <equal> <number> | <string>
<framethick> ::= "framethick"
<wordwrap> ::= "wordwrap"

Others like: pic, stretch, hstretch, vstretch, transparent, from, to are reserved for future use only.

Here's a few easy samples:


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