During the past year, we received many suggestions for new features and bug fixes for RadGridView for WinForms. After analyzing them we realized that we should do a major refactoring of both the data layer and the UI of our grid control. Then we set an ambitious goal -- to refactor the control and implement the most wanted features. This is obviously a massive task and the new grid control will not be part of Q1, but it is coming up afterwards as beta, and will be officially available for Q2 2010. This will give us enough time to test all the new features and to make a really stable product.
Since we are working on vNEXT, there will be no new feature added to the current Q1 2010 release of the grid. Still, we are working on both versions in parallel to address the issues reported by our customers during the previous quarter.
I want to tell you about the new features that will be available in Q2 2010:
First of all, we refactored the data layer to be independent from RadGridView. It will be used in other data bound controls, and will bring additional functionality to some of the other controls such as RadComboBox. The new data layer will consume substantially less memory and will be faster in various scenarios than the ongoing one. It will be fully customizable in terms of grouping, sorting, and filtering. The most significant change is in the hierarchy support. The current version supports only relational hierarchy, whereas the new one will support self-referencing hierarchy, object-relational mapping, and load on demand. To make the list complete, our new data layer will be compatible with LINQ and Telerik OpenAccess ORM.
There is a dramatic change in the UI too. The connection between data layer and UI has been fully re-engineered. Now the new UI uses general virtualization panel to virtualize rows and cells. In this way we can support spreadsheet scenarios, and a large number of columns will not slow down the grid. The same virtualization will be used in other controls as well. The new grid supports multiple views that can be re-arranged in a dock panel. It will be also easy to define your own view.
Despite all changed, we tried to keep the breaking changes to a minimum.
Let me concentrate on some of the upcoming features in more detail:
- Virtualized columns. With the new scrolling and virtualization in RadGridView, the number of columns is irrelevant. In combination with the virtual mode, you can use the grid as a spreadsheet:
- Split grid, both horizontally or vertically. Notice the details panel at the bottom -- this is a custom view which is updated automatically:
- Row/Column pin position, which will allow you to pin every row at top/bottom, and every column to left/right.
- Self-referencing hierarchy. One much requested feature was to present tree-like data in RadGridView. This would be possible with the self-referencing hierarchy.
We hope you will find the new features handy, and will have some available time to test the beta once it is out. If you have any ideas about the development of RadGridView, or you have faced issues using the control, please feel free to share them with us.
UPDATE: More information on the next version of RadGridView can be found in the following blogs: