hi all.

my team leader ask me to develope a small winform application.

this app should let the user select some files(from whereever he wants), set few other fields, and click "send files".

the file types are limited and some validation must be done before continuing.

my app should copy these files to the network, where a manager will look at them, and then it will copy them to a diffrent location.

NOW - the big question is:

should i develop a .net interface (a form...) for this task, in which i can limit the file types, run my own validation etc.. OR should i use ms outlook for this task, because (as my team leader sais..) the users know already.

please enlight me with reasons, why it's best to develop a .net interface.

security... rich client.... etc.

Re: Visual C# General a design question


It has nothing to do with security or ease of use. The question boils down to whether you want your functionality to integrate into Outlook. If the answer is yes then write an Outlook add-in that uses .NET to perform the functionality you desired. You'll have access to the Outlook object model while still having fully flexibility to use .NET. I'm not sure about the Outlook interface so you'll need to determine if you can generate the UI that you want. Undoubtedly Outlook allows you to create your own UI for validation but it might require a certain type of addin. Use MSDN and the VSTO documentation to figure this out.

If you don't want Outlook integration then creating a simple WinForms app will work just fine. I doubt that is the approach you'll want to take though as it sounds like Outlook is a requirement.

Michael Taylor - 10/21/07

Re: Visual C# General a design question

Peter Ritchie

To me, integrating into Outlook doesn't make any sense based on what you've described of the functionality you need to implement. If you need to send email messages as a file, that would make sense. But, if the files really don't have anything to do with Outlook, the fact that users know how to use Outlook is irrelevant because you're adding unrelated functionality that they would still have to learn how to use.

I would go the WinForms route...

Re: Visual C# General a design question


this is exactly what i'm thinking,but to convnice my team leader, i must come up with real objective reasons.

Re: Visual C# General a design question


It sounds like you don't want Outlook integration but rather just want to e-mail files to some users. In that case a simple WinForm app would do. The WinForm app would build up the e-mail with the attachments using System.Net.Mail and send it through whatever mail server (SMTP, Exchange, whatever) was on the network. The config file for the app would contain the necessary information to talk to the server. The only gotcha would be the From/To entries. Unless you hook into Outlook (through interop) to retrieve the information you'd have to just allow the user to free-form type the e-mail addresses. This still wouldn't require you to write an Outlook addin but rather just use the Outlook object model to retrieve the necessary information.

Michael Taylor - 10/22/07

Re: Visual C# General a design question

Derek Smyth


Using Outlook for this doesn't seem like the best approach. From what I gathered from your explaination the application should move files from one network directory to another. This isn't Outlooks purpose, it's about emails, and scheduling meetings, although I think exchange has some options for sharing files but this depends on Sharepoint.

A windows application is needed here.

But your team leader has a point, your users are familar with using Outlook. Use this to design the interface to the application. Use the paper clip to attach files, have a sent button (copies to network share), a favorites folder section, a list of the number of files in each folder, do everything you can to make your application look and feel like Outlook.

Hope that helps.