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Component Owl codes Better ListView control all night so you don't have to.

Better Thumbnail Browser Component Released


We have released a whole new WinForms component called Better Thumbnail Browser. This control is useful for anyone developing photo management software or any kind of image database:

Better Thumbnail Browser Overview

Better Thumbnail Browser Overview

The control is capable of loading image thumbnails on background and does all the dirty job of threading and synchronization for you.

My motivation to make such component as lead developer at ComponentOwl.com was to have something that can smoothly integrate in my photo management software.

Since we already have Better ListView component, which is quite mature (three major releases over two years of development), I decided to build upon it and finally make control for image thumbnails that is both extensible and powerful and have native look and feel.

Better Thumbnail Browser inherits most of its functionality from Better ListView (multi column sorting, custom paddings and spacings, multi-line text and groups to name a few). It adds image loading logic on top of it, which can handle various scenarios:

  • Load images from a folder, database or custom source automatically
  • Load thumbnails with arbitrary sizes on background while progressively displaying them
  • Handle zooming thumbnails on the fly
  • Loading thumbnail items in multiple passes (e.g. load meta-data, then low quality image, then high quality image)
  • Loading thumbnails in custom order
  • Loading visible thumbnails first, then all other (and do this even though the user is scrolling the view)
  • Manage updating individual thumbnails or their count on the fly
  • Support showing loading progress

The component is fully customizable and by default inherits native Windows theme. We tested it on Windows 8 with success:

Better Thumbnail Browser with Windows 8 Theme

Better Thumbnail Browser with Windows 8 Theme


Better Thumbnail Browser contains default implementation for loading thumbnail images from disk. If you want to gather all images from a given folder (say “c:\images”), display them in Better Thumbnail Browser and load them on background, the code is particularly simple:

thumbnailBrowser.Path = "c:\\images";

And that’s it!

Better Thumbnail Browser will be our third component which is used in end-user consumer-level software package. This ensures future development, improvements and support.



One Response to “Better Thumbnail Browser Component Released”

  1. this is one useful for the example and overviews.in my website i m not used this type of functionality but this is something good component.

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