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Visual Basic is a third-generation event-driven programming language first released by Microsoft in 1991. It evolved from the earlier DOS version called BASIC. BASIC means Beginners' All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code. Since then Microsoft has released many versions of Visual Basic, from Visual Basic 1.0 to the final version Visual Basic 6.0. Visual Basic is a user-friendly programming language designed for beginners, and it enables anyone to develop GUI window applications easily.
In 2002, Microsoft released Visual Basic.NET(VB.NET) to replace Visual Basic 6. Thereafter, Microsoft declared VB6 a legacy programming language in 2008. Fortunately, Microsoft still provides some form of support for VB6. VB.NET is a fully object-oriented programming language implemented in the .NET Framework. It was created to cater for the development of the web as well as mobile applications. However, many developers still favor Visual Basic 6.0 over its successor Visual Basic.NET.
In VB 6, the possibilities for program creation are virtually limitless. Whether you're a math teacher interested in coding programs like geometric progression, quadratic equation solver, simultaneous equation solver, prime number tester, factors finder, or a quadratic function graph Plotter—the scope is expansive. For science educators, the potential extends to simulation programs covering projectile, simple harmonic motion, star war, and beyond. Businesses can leverage VB 6 to develop applications like inventory management systems, Amortization Calculators, investments calculators, point-of-sale systems, payroll systems, accounting programs, and more, streamlining operations and boosting productivity. Gaming enthusiasts can delve into the world of VB 6 to create engaging programs such as slot machines, reversi, tic-tac-toe, and others. Moreover, the realm of multimedia is at your fingertips with the ability to craft Smart Audio Players, Multimedia Players, and a variety of other applications. For inspiration, explore our collection of VB sample codes.
Before you can write programs in VB 6, you need to install Visual Basic 6 compiler on your computer. You can purchase a copy of Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 Learning Edition or Microsoft Visual Basic Professional Edition from Amazon.com, both are vb6 compilers. Besides, you can also buy it from eBay at Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 6 Professional PRO MSDN Library Manual Service Pack. If you have already installed Microsoft Office in your PC or laptop, you can also use the built-in Visual Basic Application in Excel to start creating Visual Basic programs without having to spend extra cash to buy the VB6 compiler.
You can also install VB6 on Windows 10 but you need to follow certain steps otherwise the installation will fail. First, you need to run setup as administrator. Next, you need to use custom installation. Clear the checkbox for Data Access. If you don't, set up will hang at the end of the installation. Finally, click next and wait for the installation to complete. For complete instructions, please follow this link Install VB6 on Windows 10
After installing the vb6 compiler, the icon will appear on your desktop or in your programs menu. Click on the icon to launch the VB6 compiler. On start up, Visual Basic 6.0 will display the following dialog box as shown in Figure 1.1.
You can choose to either start a new project, open an existing project or select a list of recently opened programs. A project is a collection of files that make up your application. There are various types of applications that we could create, however, we shall concentrate on creating Standard EXE programs (EXE means executable). Before you begin, you must think of an application that preferably have commercial ,educational or recreational value. Next, click on the Standard EXE icon to go into the actual Visual Basic 6 programming environment.
When you start a new Visual Basic 6 Standard EXE project, you will be presented with the Visual Basic 6 Integrated Development Environment (IDE). The Visual Basic 6 Integrated Programming Environment is shown in Figure 1.2. It consists of the toolbox, the form, the project explorer and the properties window.
The Form is the primary building block of a Visual Basic 6 application. A Visual Basic 6 application can actually comprise many forms, but we shall focus on developing an application with one form first. We will learn how to develop applications with multiple forms later. Before you proceed to build the application, it is a good practice to save the project first. You can save the project by selecting Save Project from the File menu, assign a name to your project and save it in a certain folder. You shall now proceed to learn Visual Basic programming from the next lesson onwards.