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  • Ali BaderEddin 6:18 pm on March 3, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    How To Get All Site Urls Without Creating an SPSite object? 

    Let’s say you are trying to create a SharePoint admin tool that shows all site collections in the farm, then allows the user to interact with only the site collections of interest to him.

    To get all the site collection Urls in the farm, you’d usually go with the following approach:

    foreach (SPWebApplication webApp in SPWebService.ContentService.WebApplications)
        foreach (SPSite site in webApp.Sites)
            string fullSiteUrl = site.Url;

    The disadvantage in using such an approach is that we have to create an SPSite object for every site collection in the farm, then close it. That’ll mean a lot of work allocating and deallocating memory. Luckily, there is a better approach to do this, shown below:

    foreach (SPWebApplication webApp in SPWebService.ContentService.WebApplications)
        string webAppUrl = webApp.GetResponseUri(SPUrlZone.Default).AbsoluteUri; 
        foreach (string siteUrl in webApp.Sites.Names)
            string fullSiteUrl = webAppUrl + siteUrl;

    This way, we don’t have to create any of the expensive SPSite objects then close them. On a small farm, that’ll help your application load faster, but on a large farm with hundreds of site collections, this approach is necessary.

    You can find the full source for the SPSite ListView here. This was created as a Visual Studio 2008 project on top of SharePoint 2010 Beta, but you can easily remove the reference and add a reference to the 2007 Microsoft.SharePoint.dll.

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  • Ali BaderEddin 2:48 am on February 24, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: AbsoluteUri, GetResponseUri, , SPUrlZone, SPWebApplication, Url   

    SPWebApplication Url 

    I was trying to get the url of a SharePoint web application, but I couldn’t find a Url property for that class. Trying out several properties, I finally found an easy way to get the Url:

    string webUrl = webApp.GetResponseUri(SPUrlZone.Default).AbsoluteUri;

    where webApp is a reference to an object of type SPWebApplication. For example, here is a sample code that displays all web urls in the Farm (except for Central Admin WebApp).

    foreach (SPWebApplication webApp in SPWebService.ContentService.WebApplications)
        string webUrl = webApp.GetResponseUri(SPUrlZone.Default).AbsoluteUri;
    • Girish Kumar Meena 4:36 am on June 25, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      good one. I found your article after I found the solution myself, nevertheless its a nice read.

    • royaline 8:59 am on September 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for this post. I’ve spent a lot of time trying to get the SPContext of a timer job. Referencing the AbsouteUri was far from thought. This solved my problem. :)


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      Glad it helped..

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  • Ali BaderEddin 4:50 am on February 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    C# Windows Form is Busy 

    There are two very common ways of telling the user that your application is busy. One is to show a progress bar that gets updated based on the progress getting done, and another is to show the “Waiting” cursor while the application is doing work.

    Waiting Cursor

    To show the user the Waiting cursor while your program is busy, all you have to do is to set the current cursor to the Waiting cursor before your code runs, then set it back to an arrow after your code completes.

    Cursor.Current = Cursors.WaitCursor;
    //  Your Code
    Cursor.Current = Cursors.Default;

    Progress Bar

    The progress bar is a more user-friendly solution, but in most cases showing the waiting cursor does the job. Here is the simplest way to use a progress bar:

    int totalSteps = 10;
    for (int i = 1; i <= totalSteps; i++)
        //  One chunk of your code
        int progress = i * 100 / totalSteps;
        blocksProgressBar.Value = progress;
    blocksProgressBar.Value = 0;

    Yes, it’s that easy to implement a progress bar that gets updated based on the work done by your app. However, while progress is shown, the user can’t interact with the UI or do any other operation (the UI thread is the single thread doing the work here). To get the multi-threaded behavior, the easiest way is to use a background worker process, as shown below:

    So instead of putting your code in the event handler method, you will replace it with a call to start the worker process then move the code to the worker process events.

    private void doButton_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)

    The worker process will do its work in the DoWork event. To show progress, the code needs to be split into segments and the background worker ReportProgress method needs to be called whenever a segment of code is executed.

    private void backgroundWorker_DoWork(object sender, DoWorkEventArgs e)
        int totalSteps = 10;
        for (int i = 1; i <= totalSteps; i++)
            //  One chunk of your code
            int progress = i * 100 / totalSteps;

    Whenever progress changes, we need to update the value of the progress bar.

    private void backgroundWorker_ProgressChanged(object sender, ProgressChangedEventArgs e)
        blocksProgressBar.Value = e.ProgressPercentage;

    When the worker process is done (progress = 100%), we reset the progress bar.

    private void backgroundWorker_Completed(object sender, RunWorkerCompletedEventArgs e)
        blocksProgressBar.Value = 0;

    Below is a Windows Form application that lets you try the concepts explained above, and also shows you how the Marquee progress bar works, which is shockingly harder than the more realistic single-threaded progress bar we’ve discussed above.

    Download source and exe from here.

    • Paul 9:09 am on May 11, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Thank You! That is exactly what I was looking for.

    • Mike 10:45 am on October 4, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      How do you tie a progress bar to sql query, returning data into a datagridview? It doesn’t have to be totally accurate, just doing something while the data is loading, then stopping once it has loaded…

    • Rudi Larno 8:49 am on December 8, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Seems like the Marquee style does its work using the UI thread. So then it is logical that your options using System.Threading.Thread.Sleep(milliSecondsToWait); do not work, as you are blocking the UI Thread, not allowing your UI to get updated.

      Nice write up however.

    • yogesh makwana 8:58 pm on January 18, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      i want to know how to use marque in windowform…??????

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      Really helpful post. Thanks

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    • Khursheed Fateh 10:17 pm on May 12, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      See the modifivations I made to ylour program. Now Timer base progressbar is working.

      private Stopwatch s = new Stopwatch(); // Stopwatch
      private void progressButton2_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
      showProgress = true;
      timer.Enabled = true;

      s.Start(); // start stopwatch in this method

      marqueeProgressBar.Style = ProgressBarStyle.Marquee; // set progressbar style in this method

      private void timer_Tick(object sender, EventArgs e)
      if ( s.Elapsed < TimeSpan.FromSeconds((double)secondsToWaitSpinner2.Value))
      // as long as elapsed time is less then the delay time
      // keep going
      toolStripStatusLabel1.Text = s.Elapsed.ToString(); // show elapsed time
      marqueeProgressBar.Style = ProgressBarStyle.Blocks;
      s.Stop(); // stop stop-watch here
      s.Reset(); // reset stop watch so that when you click again
      // it starts from begining and
      // not from where it stoped last time
      timer.Enabled = false;
      toolStripStatusLabel1.Text = "";

    • Khursheed Fateh 10:32 pm on May 12, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      “Before and after” part of your code is not working because it is freezing/stoping UI/Form for specified time. Because for the duration marquee is set Form remain froozen/unresponsive progressbar fails to show. You can see this by commenting last statement of method like this. Now you will see progressbar marquee was started but was unable to update itself because form was not responding during that time.

      private void progressButton_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
      marqueeProgressBar.Style = ProgressBarStyle.Marquee;

      int milliSecondsToWait = (int)secondsToWaitSpinner.Value * 1000;

      // marqueeProgressBar.Style = ProgressBarStyle.Blocks;

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  • Ali BaderEddin 11:41 pm on January 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    Sortable ListView 

    The Windows Forms ListView control doesn’t provide column sorting functionality. So if you click on a column in a ListView Details view, don’t expect the items to be sorted by the clicked column. To get this functionality, we’ll need to sort the items by the clicked column in the ListView ColumnClick event. I searched online for “Sortable ListView” and I found three MSDN articles talking about this: Sort ListView Column in Visual C#, Sorting ListView Items by Column Using Windows Forms, and How to: Sort ListView Items. None of those implementations takes into consideration the type of the column being sorted. That is, they all do string sorting. If you have dates and numbers in your list, then they’ll not be sorted properly. For example, number 2 will be considered greater than 11. Date time 9/9/1400 will be considered greater than 11/11/2020. Below is an implementation that takes into consideration string, DateTime, int and double types. It can be easily extended to handle more types.

    • Add the SortableListView control to your Windows Form
    • When adding columns to the SortableListView, set the Tag attribute to the type of the column.
    sortableListView.Columns.Add("String Field").Tag = typeof(string);
    sortableListView.Columns.Add("DateTime Field").Tag = typeof(DateTime);
    sortableListView.Columns.Add("Int Field").Tag = typeof(int);
    sortableListView.Columns.Add("Double Field").Tag = typeof(double);
    • Now, you can add the items as usual.

    For example, the below list is sorted by the DateTime field.

    Sortable ListView

    Sortable ListView

     Click on the above image to download the SortableListView control.

    • Mayank Raichura 9:21 am on October 6, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Great article and a really nice control. Just one question…. why didn’t you add a new Property of, say, ColumnType? I mean this could let the tag property to be used for other purposes….

      Anyways….thank you very much for the control….its really really awesome…

  • Ali BaderEddin 9:53 pm on January 12, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: collection, collection editor, CollectionEditor, event, FormClosed, FormClosedEventHandler, propertygrid, propertyvaluechanged, PropertyValueChangedEventHandler   

    PropertGrid Collection Events 

    You are using the PropertyGrid control to allow the user to edit the properties of an object at run-time from the UI. This works great and is in fact very reliable since this is the same control used by Visual Studio to display the properties of controls. Now that you are letting the user update the object directly, you’d like to get a PropertyValueChanged event whenever the user changes a property, so you can respond to the user’s action. You’ll be able to do that by adding a PropertValueChanged event to the PropertyGrid, which will get triggered every time a property is changed, unless the property is a collection. So if you have a collection inside the property grid selected object and you’d like to be notified when a property changes in that collection or when an item is added\removed, there is no way to do so with the OOB Microsoft PropertyGrid control. Clearly, the reason why the PropertyValueChanged event is not triggered when a collection is changed is because the reference to the collection object is still the same.

    In order to be notified when a property changes inside a collection, follow instructions on this blog. You’ll find this very helpful. However, this solution can’t help you if you’d like to be notified when an item is removed from the collection or when it is added without any of its properties changed. A more generic solution I found was to get a notification when the collection form is closed. This way, I wouldn’t have to worry too much about the steps the user is taking in the collection editor. When the collection form is closed, I get notified and act on the collection object based on its current state.


    First, add a reference to System.Design dll in your Visual Studio project. Create the following class, which represents a collection editor that triggers a MyFormClosed event when the collection editor form is closed.

    using System;
    using System.ComponentModel.Design;
    using System.Windows.Forms;
    public class MyCollectionEditor : CollectionEditor
        public delegate void MyFormClosedEventHandler(object sender,
                                            FormClosedEventArgs e);
        public static event MyFormClosedEventHandler MyFormClosed;
        public MyCollectionEditor(Type type) : base(type) { }
        protected override CollectionForm CreateCollectionForm()
            CollectionForm collectionForm = base.CreateCollectionForm();
            collectionForm.FormClosed += new FormClosedEventHandler(collection_FormClosed);
            return collectionForm;
        void collection_FormClosed(object sender, FormClosedEventArgs e)
            if (MyFormClosed != null)
                MyFormClosed(this, e);

    To use the above collection editor for the property grid, you can simply add the following attribute above the collection Property of the object which you set to propertGrid.SelectedObject.

    [Editor(typeof(MyCollectionEditor), typeof(UITypeEditor))]

    The final part is to create our custom FormClosed event handler and bind it to our custom collection editor as follows:

    public MyForm()
        //  Make the property grid listen to collection properties changes
        MyCollectionEditor.MyFormClosed += new MyCollectionEditor.MyFormClosedEventHandler
    private void propertyGrid_CollectionFormClosed(object s, FormClosedEventArgs e)
        //  Code to run when collection form is closed
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