Lesson 1: Introduction to VB2013

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1.1 Introduction to VB2013

Visual Basic Express 2013 is the version of Visual Basic launched by Microsoft in 2013. Visual Basic Express 2013 has many new features compared to VB2012. Like Visual Basic Express 2012 , it is now integrated with other Microsoft Programming languages C# and C++ in a package known as Visual Studio 2013. Visual Studio Express 2013 now comes in five editions, they are:

  • Visual Studio Express 2013 for Web
  • Visual Studio Express 2013 for Windows
  • Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Desktop
  • Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Phone
  • Visual Studio Team Foundation Server Express 2013

However,  we shall focus on learning VB2013 Express for Windows Desktop , therefore you will need to download the free software from Microsoft site below: http://www.visualstudio.com/en-us/downloads3
Visual Basic Express 2013 is a full fledged Object-Oriented Programming(OOP) Language, just like other OOP languages such as C++, Java,C# and more.

1.2 Visual Studio 2013 Integrated Development Environment

The Integrated Development Environment when you launch Visual Studio 2013 Express is shown in the diagram below. vb2013_figure1.1
Figure 1.1: Visual Studio 2013 Start Page

1.3 Creating a New Project in Visual Studio 2013

The initial window is the Start Page tab. To start a new Visual Studio Express 2013 project, click on New Project under the Start section to launch the Visual Studio 2013 New Project page as shown in Figure 1.2 below. You can also choose to open a recent project:

Figure 1.2: Visual Studio 2013 Project Page

The New Project Page comprises three templates, Visual Basic, Visual C# and Visual C++. Since we are only learning Visual Basic 2013, we shall select Visual Basic. Visual Basic 2013 offers you four types of projects that you can create, they are Windows Forms Application, WPF Application, Console Application and Class Library. Since we only learn how to create windows applications, we shall select Windows Forms Application.At the bottom of this dialog box, you can change the default project name WindowsApplication1 to some other name you like, for example, MyFirstProgram. After you have renamed the project, click OK to continue. The following IDE Windows will appear, it is similar to Visual Basic 2012. The Toolbox is not shown until you click on the Toolbox tab.When you click on the Toolbox tab or use the  shortcut keys Ctrl+w+x, the common controls Toolbox will appear.

Figure 1.3: Visual Basic 2013 IDE

VB2013 IDE comprises a few windows, the Form window , the Solution Explorer window and the Properties window . It also consists of a toolbox which contains many useful controls that allows a programmer to develop his or her Visual Basic 2013 programs. The toolbox is shown in Figure 1.4.

Figure 1.4: Visual Basic 2013 Toolbox

Now, we shall proceed to show you how to create your first program. First, change the text of the form to My First Program in the properties window, it will appear as the title of the program. Next, insert a button and change its text to OK. The design interface is shown in Figure 1.5

Figure 1.5: The Design Interface

Now click on the OK button to bring up the code window and enter the following statement between Private Sub and End Sub procedure, as shown in Figure 1.6:

MsgBox(“My First Visual Basic 2013 Program”)

Figure 1.6: Vb2013 Code window

Now click on the Start on the toolbar or press F5 to run the program then click on the OK button, a dialog box that displays the “My First Visual Basic 2013 Program″ message will appear,as shown in Figure 1.7:


Figure 1.7:The Message Box

The function MsgBox is a built-in function of Visual Basic 2013 and it will display the text enclosed within the brackets.

Now you have created your first program, we shall learn more VB2013 programming techniques in coming lessons.

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