Upgrade VB6 to Visual Basic.Net
Many companies have difficulties in supporting obsolete Visual Basic 6 administration Applications – "just a simple change" to a Application is a major undertaking. When support is difficult and maintenance costs mount, upgrading to VB.Net is the best option.
The upgrade Wizard converting VB6 code to VB.Net 2010 is no longer available – and was not of much value anyway. VB6 does not readily convert to VB.Net. VB.Net, an object-oriented computer programming language, is very, very different.
The whole of the VB6 Application will need to be rewritten from the ground up.
Upgrading VB6 to VB.Net
The conversion to Visual Basic.Net can be done whilst still maintaining the old VB6 Application:
The conversion Process
- The Access Back-End Database will remain unchanged – besides any optimisations.
- The Business logic rules will be extracted and converted into VB.Net code.
- The old grid software will be upgraded to the VB.Net alternative.
- Microsoft Access Reporting will be maintained.
- A Tabbed or Multiple Document Interface (MDI) Framework can be used.
- Converting the data access Networking technology to ADO.Net is straight forward.
- Library procedures will help speed up the conversion effort and reduce cost.
- Consistent VB.Net Coding standards and SQL Server Naming Standards will be used.
- All ActiveX controls like MSFlexGrid, MSComctlLib, MSComDlg, Stdole, TabDlg, MSDataGridLib, MSDataListLib, MSADODC, Chart, etc – will be converted to native VB.Net controls.
- Crystal Reports will need to be converted to Access reporting.
Converting a legacy application to a fully supported VB.Net platform, will allow a multitude of new features to be used – like bulk Emailing or viewing records from the Web.
The Application will be fast, efficient and user-friendly – maintenance costs will be reduced.
Example of a Conversion to VB.Net
A Microsoft Access accounting Application needed enhancing – rather than patching and improving the existing Application, I decided to convert the Access Forms to use Visual Basic – whilst still maintaining the Access Back-End Database.
The results were particularly pleasing.
The accounting Application consisted of an Access Database Front-end and an Access Database Back-end. The Back-End was untouched, while the Forms and VBA logic in the Front-End were converted to Visual Basic.
Upgrading Access Forms to Visual Basic
- The new application was based on a multiple document interface – where the different child Forms are placed in a parent Form.
- A linkage between Parent and the Child nodes allowed common Status Bar and Command Buttons to be used.
- The Visual Basic code system turned out to be much less complex than the VBA coding required for the Access Database environment.
- A Library of well tested procedures dramatically reduced development times.
- A TreeView control replaced the Access menu system and proved more flexible and efficient.
- ADO.Net was used to update the Microsoft Access Database.
- The DataGridView control was used to display the Master/Child relationships of the Access Tables.
- All Access Reports worked as before.
- Microsoft Word was invoked to merge Access data with a Document template, to produce attractive customer Invoices.
The conversion from Microsoft Access to VB.Net was fast
All in all the conversion took much less time than anticipated – comparable, if not faster than the development time of a VBA Access solution. The new VB.Net Application is user friendly and performance impressively fast.
This type of solution is ideal for Company administration Applications, where volumes, maintenance and performance are an issue.