Language - C Sharp Windows Visual Studio

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Language - C#

Windows with Visual Studio

Welcome to using Phidgets with C#! By using C#, you will have access to the complete Phidget22 API, including events.

Visual Studio is an IDE provided by Microsoft that can be used to develop code in a wide variety of programming languages, including C#.

Install Phidget Drivers for Windows

Before getting started with the guides below, ensure you have the following components installed on your machine:

  1. You will need the Phidgets Windows Drivers


The Phidget22.NET library is now available on here. Nuget is the recommended way to install and use the .NET library in Visual Studio. The nuget package bundles the C library on Windows, so there are no other prerequisites that need to be installed. The nuget package adds targets for .NET Core and .NET Standard, so it should be usable from almost any .NET environment which also supports the C library.

Use Our Examples

One of the best ways to start programming with Phidgets is to use our example code as a guide. In order to run the examples, you will need to download and install Microsoft Visual Studio.

Now that you have Microsoft Visual Studio installed, select an example that will work with your Phidget:

Open the example project and start the example by pressing the Start button:

Csharp visualstudio run.png

The application will open the Phidget, list basic information about the Phidget, and demonstrate the Phidget's functionality. Here is an example of a Digital Output channel on a RFID Phidget:

Csharp visualstudio rfid.PNG

You should now have the example up and running for your device. Your next step is to look at the Editing the Examples section below for information about the example and important concepts for programming Phidgets. This would be a good time to play around with the device and experiment with some of its functionality.

Editing the Examples

The C# examples are what comprise the Windows Phidget Control Panel, so you'll need to modify a few things to adapt them for your own purposes. To begin with, you can remove the following line:

commandLineData phidgetParameters = open.parseCmdLine(); //get command line parameters

Then, you can modify any line that mentions phidgetParameters by setting it to the desired value instead of using PhidgetParameters object.

For instance:

{ //set all the values grabbed from command line.  these values have defaults that are set in ExampleUtils.cs, you can check there to see them.
    digout.Channel = phidgetParameters.Channel; //selects the channel on the device to open
    digout.DeviceSerialNumber = phidgetParameters.SerialNumber; //selects the device or hub to open
    digout.HubPort = phidgetParameters.HubPort; //selects the port on the hub to open
    digout.IsHubPortDevice = phidgetParameters.isHubPortDevice; //is the device a port on a VINT hub?

    if (phidgetParameters.isRemote) //are we trying to open a remote device?
        digout.IsRemote = true;
        Net.EnableServerDiscovery(ServerType.Device); //turn on network scan
        if (phidgetParameters.Password != null && phidgetParameters.ServerName != null)
            Net.SetServerPassword(phidgetParameters.ServerName, phidgetParameters.Password); //set the password if there is one
        digout.IsLocal = true;

    digout.Open(); //open the device specified by the above parameters
catch (PhidgetException ex) { errorBox.addMessage("Error opening device: " + ex.Message); }

Might become:

    digout.Channel = 0;
    digout.DeviceSerialNumber = 370097;
    digout.HubPort = 0; 
    digout.IsHubPortDevice = true;
    digout.IsRemote = false;    
catch (PhidgetException ex) { errorBox.addMessage("Error opening device: " + ex.Message); }

You can then manipulate the rest of the code as your application requires. A more in-depth description of programming with Phidgets will be covered in the next section.

Setting up a New Project

When you are building a project from scratch, or adding Phidget functionality to an existing project, you'll need to configure your development environment to properly link the Phidget .NET library. To begin:

Create a new project (a Windows Forms Application will be created for this example):

CSharp VS2017 New Project.png

CSharp VS2015 New Project.png

Next, right-click to add a reference to the Phidget .NET library:

CSharp VS2015 Add Reference.png

On the following screen, click Browse... and navigate to the location of Phidget22.NET.dll:

  • C:\Program Files\Phidgets\Phidget22\Phidget22.NET.dll

CSharp VS2015 Add Reference 2.png

Finally, to include the Phidget .NET library, add the following lines to main window class file:

using Phidget22;
using Phidget22.Events;

Success! The project now has access to Phidgets.

What's Next?

Now that you have set up Phidgets to work with your programming environment, we recommend you read our guide on Phidget Programming Basics to learn the fundamentals of programming with Phidgets.Next Arrow.png