Windows Controls: The Group Box


Introduction to the Group Box




A group box is a static control used to set a visible or programmatic group of controls. A group box primarily draws a rectangular box where it is positioned. This creates an impression of controls that would be treated as a group. A group can then be used for its ability to show a limiting box that encompasses some controls on the dialog box or form but, as we will see when studying radio buttons, a group box can be used to create a group of controls where such controls should or must be treated as one entity.

Creating a Group Box

To visually create a group box, from the Toolbox, click the Group Box button Group Box and click the desired area of the dialog box. To programmatically create a group box, declare a pointer to CWnd, initialize it with the new operator, and call the Create() member function. Specify the class name as STATIC.

Characteristics of the Group Box


Group Boxes and Data Exchange

In most circumstances, you can use a group control without referring to it programmatically. If you had visually added the control to your application and you plan to refer to it in your code, you should change its identifier to something other than IDC_STATIC.

The Caption of a Group Box

As stated already, one of the most regular roles of a group box is to create a group of controls visibly delimited by a rectangular frame. To indicate what the group represents, the group box is equipped with a Caption property for which you supply a string.

By default, the text of the group box' caption is aligned to the left. Alternatively, you can position it to the center or the right by selecting the desired value in the Horizontal Alignment combo box of the Properties window:

Horizontal Alignment: Default
Horizontal Alignment: Left
Horizontal Alignment: Center Horizontal Alignment: Right
Group Box Group Box Group Box

To programmatically change the caption of the control, call the CWnd::SetWindowText() member function.

All other properties of a group box are those of a STATIC control.


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