The History of FlexGrid

A brief history of the famous FlexGrid Control

Project Milestone


Control: VSFlexGrid 1.0
Platform: VBX
Operating System: Windows 95

This was our very first grid, a VBX add-in for Visual Basic.

The VSFlexGrid 1.0 supported cell merging and displayed hierarchical data.

Project Milestone


Control: VSFlexGrid 7.0
Platform: VB6 (Active X)
Operating System: Windows 98

By this time, the FlexGrid had evolved to support in-cell editing, complex data-binding, and Excel import/export.

Microsoft licensed it and included it with VB6 as the MSFlexGrid and MSHFlexGrid.

The VSFlexGrid 8.0 is still sold and supported by GrapeCity.

Project Milestone


Control: C1FlexGrid
Platform: WinForms
Operating System: Windows XP

Microsoft released the .NET platform in 2001, and we ported the FlexGrid to WinForms.

It immediately became one of our most popular products, and it still is. The performance and flexibility of the ActiveX version were preserved, and we added a host of new features in response to user requests.

Project Milestone


Control: C1FlexGrid
Platform: .NET Compact Edition
Operating System: Windows Mobile

Microsoft released their .NET Compact Framework to allow .NET development in "Compact Devices" late in 2002. We soon started getting requests from users who wanted a CF version of the FlexGrid, and in 2003 we delivered it.

Project Milestone


Control: C1FlexGrid
Platform: Silverlight/WPF
Operating System: Any (Desktop)

Microsoft released the first version of WPF in 2006, and Silverlight 2 in 2008.

We spent a significant amount of time researching these brand new platforms, and released the WPF/Silverlight versions of the C1FlexGrid in 2010.

This was really exciting for us because we now had versions of the grid that could be used in desktop and web applications, and they both shared a single code base. Many users started porting their WinForms applications to the Web using Silverlight, and the FlexGrid made this effort easier.

Since then, we have released additional XAML-based versions of the grid, including Windows Phone, WinRT, and LightSwitch.

Project Milestone


Control: C1FlexGrid
Platform: Windows Phone
Operating System: Windows Phone

Microsoft decided to release its own Smart Phone to compete with iPhone and Android phones.

We were able to use a lot of our knowledge and code from WPF and Silverlight to create a FlexGrid for Windows Phone.

FlexGrid for Windows Phone was the first FlexGrid to support touch gestures like scrolling and zooming.

Project Milestone


Control: C1FlexGrid
Platform: WinRT
Operating System: Windows 8

Microsoft made a big bet on XAML when they introduced Windows 8. All of the Windows 8 apps had to be built using XAML (or JavaScript) in a new environment called WinRT.

WinRT is different from .NET and we had to do some work to migrate our XAML FlexGrid. Now, the Windows Phone and WinRT FlexGrid share the same code base.

Project Milestone


Control: FlexGrid
Platform: HTML5
Operating System: Any

In 2011, Microsoft released IE9, with support for ECMAScript 5. Almost at the same time, Google released their AngularJS application framework, and a lot of other significant developments happened in the HTML5/JavaScript world.

HTML5 and JavaScript started to become a practical alternative to create business applications.

In 2014 we introduced Wijmo, a suite of controls for HTML/JavaScript that includes a version of the FlexGrid that is virtually 100% code-compatible with the XAML versions of the grid, and provides all the performance, features, and flexibility FlexGrid users expect.

Seeing the FlexGrid running on iPads and Android tablets for the first time was really exciting for some of us that have worked on this product for over 20 years...

We are happy to provide our XAML and WinForms users with a great upgrade path to the new world of HTML5 and JavaScript applications.

And also to provide experienced JavaScript developers with a new generation of controls unlike anything they've seen so far.

This version of the FlexGrid has also been extended into ASP.NET MVC.

Who knows what platform you will see FlexGrid on next...