Generic printing class (and how to print a list control content)

Tuesday Oct 1st 2002 by Iuri Apollonio

Generic printing class (and how to print a list control content)

A Generic Printer class - and how to print a list control content (or how to print from anywhere without too many troubles).

The CPrinterJob class is a base class for implementing print process aside from the view architecture; it comes along with a CPrintStatus (a CDialog derived) which shows the printing progress process. You will need to derive a class from this and override the virtual functions as you need; the function are exactly the same as the CView ones (OnPreparePrinting, OnBeginPrinting, OnPrint and so on ..) and you can threat them in the same way; then you can call the OnFilePrint function that will start the printing process. If you want to call a "Page Setup" dialog for customizing the printing you can do this in the OnPreparePrinting function and eventually return false to break the process.

As an example, I've written a class to print the content of a CListCtrl (CListCtrlPrint) with a CListPrintSetup class to manage header, footer, fonts types and sizes and margins.

The CListPrintSetup uses three things that can be used for other purposes:

  1. A CCoolButton class, which is an ownerdraw button with a cool look (main code borrowed from another codeguru .. :)
  2. A CFontCombo class, which is a combobox for choosing a font; borrowed from Girish Bharadwaj code with only a small modify to avoid symbols font
  3. Some macros (you will find them in the CListPrintSetup header file) to manage tab pages. I use here this way for tab sheet: I write the main dialog which contains the tab control and the button which are common (ex. Ok, Cancel), and then the tab pages as child dialogs without borders and title; then with the macros you can easily connect them to the tab control.

The CPrinterJob class

This class is designed to be a base class for your evil pourpose; it works exactly as a CView (except for printing preview, sorry!). It has some virtual functions you can override as you would normally do inside a CView class:
virtual bool OnPreparePrinting(CPrintInfo* pInfo, bool bPrintPreview = false);
- the only difference from the CView's one is the bPrintPreview members - I use it for my pourpose, if you aren't using it from inside a CView you can safely ignore it. You should call the base class function from this one (ex. return CPrinterJob::OnPreparePrinting(pInfo, bPrintPreview));
virtual void OnBeginPrinting(CDC* pDC, CPrintInfo* pInfo);
virtual void OnPrint(CDC* pDC, CPrintInfo* pInfo);
virtual void OnEndPrinting(CDC* pDC, CPrintInfo* pInfo);
- those three functions work exactly as the CView ones and do nothing in the base class is up to your derived one to do something (almost in the OnPrint - or you will print white pages ..)

Supposing you have properly derived your class and do something in the OnPrint()
(ex. CMyPJob::OnPrint(CDC* pDC, CPrintInfo* pInfo) { pDC->TextOut(100,100,"Hello World!"); })
all you need to do the printing process is this:

CMyPJob pJob;

To include this class in your project you will need to do this:

  • add the CPrinterJob class
  • add the CPrintStatus class (is a dialog, add it with its resoruce)
  • add the avi files you will use in the CPrintStatus class (in this sample, it is borrowed from Windows - it's called IDR_PRINT and it's an "AVI" resource To see a working implementation of the above, look below to the CListCtrlPrint class.

    The CListCtrlPrint class

    This is a class derived from the CPrinterJob. It permits to print the content of a CListCtrl; it also implements a option dialog for setting the header and footer and the fonts type and size.

    The use of this class is very simple, as you can see in the sample application: in the OnOK() function of the sample dialog, we find:

    	CListCtrlPrint cJob;
    	cJob.csPageHead = "This is the header of the file\r\nMultiline!\r\n";
    	cJob.csPageFooter = "Just a test for the footers\r\neventually multiline too ..";
    	cJob.csPage = "Page %d of %d";
    	cJob.pList = &wndList

    If it meets your needs, all you need is to include the following things in your project:

    • the classes for CPrinterJob as stated above;
    • classes CCoolButton and CFontCombo for controls (CCoolbutton needs the cursor resource IDC_HANDCUR)
    • classes CListPrintPage1, CListPrintPage2 and CListPrintSetup for the option dialog (you'll need the dialogs resources and the bitmap resource IDB_PAGE)
    • and finally, the CListCtrlPrint which implements the CPrinterJob derived class and actually do all the work.

    You can peer through the CListCtrlPrint code to see how to implement a CPrinterJob derived.

    Download source 94K.

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