The weekly comp.lang.pascal.delphi.misc MiniFAQ (abbreviated)


Welcome Delphi newbies!  This FAQ has been put together by Delphi experts who
frequent this group, and is posted weekly by a Delphi non-expert (me!), in the
hopes of making this group a nicer place to be for all concerned by answering
the most frequently-asked questions even before you've asked them!

So now you don't have to admit that you don't know the answers to these
questions; just read on, and learn the answers in the "privacy of your own home"
(or wherever you happen to be)!  Meanwhile, our resident Delphi experts are busy
answering all manner of new and exciting questions!

To save costs for those readers with pay-per-megabyte charges, this FAQ is
posted in abbreviated form three weeks out of four.  The entire FAQ can be
found at the following location:

The full FAQ ends with a list of links to useful sites.  There, you'll find
advice, components to download and use in your own programs, tutorials, tips
and tricks, and many other useful things for Delphi programmers.  The Delphi
community is LARGE...make the most of it!

Esther Michaels

2001-Apr-04: Initial version (kindly contributed by Bruce Roberts).
2001-Apr-25: Formatted to 80 characters per line, added preamble, made html
2001-Apr-26: Added reference to FindCmdLineSwitch and CmdLine in Q10.
2001-Oct-30: Updated Links section.
2001-Nov-11: Added Q12 (with thanks to John Stockton).
2001-Nov-22: Added Q13 (with thanks to Daniel Rutten).
2002-Jan-13: Added Q14 and Q15 (with thanks to Bruce Roberts), and updated
             introduction to fit with abbreviated-posting policy.
1. How do I start another program from my program?
2. How to stop a second instance of my program from executing? (Also: HPrevInst
doesn't seem to work, why?)
3. I'm getting strange decimal values when I manipulate real numbers (i.e.
single, real48, double, extended), what gives?
4. Is there a limit on the number of characters allowed in a tMemo?
5. Why do I get an "abstract error" when I try to use a tStrings variable?
6. How do I access a component/property/field of Form1 from Form2?
7. How do I change the background, font, general appearance of an entry in a
tListView, tTreeView, tListBox, tCombobox list, tStringGrid, etc.?
8. How do I change the formatting of a line/word/character in a tMemo?
9. Why does the de{*word*81} show my For loop variable counting down, not up?
10. How do I get the path of my executable? And, how do I retrieve the command
line parameters?
11. When my program is in a loop it doesn't respond to user input or update its
display. Can I change this?
12. How do I access the compilation date in my program?
13. How do I access the VersionInfo tab's data at runtime?
14. Does Delphi have an equivalent to the VB Split function?
15. I create a label/edit/some other control at run-time but it doesn't
appear on the form. Why?

(For answers, go to