If you've ever researched methods for creating a splash screen in LabVIEW, you have probably found that most methods for creating a splash screen in LabVIEW have some shortcomings or limitations -- especially when you want to turn your VI into an executable. This has been frustrating for many LabVIEW users (myself included), so I decided to see if I could develop a method for creating a splash screen effect in LabVIEW that would meet two primary criteria:
The Splash in Main distribution includes 6 fully-documented and functional example VIs that demonstrate how to use the Splash in Main_BRAT VI:
* LabVIEW 2015 version only.
Run the included example VIs to see the behaviors that can be achieved.
Complete Exercise 1 to learn how you can add a splash screen effect to ANY VI in just two steps!
If you're tired of creating boring, rectangular splash screens in LabVIEW, download this code now!
The examples to the right show what can be achieved.
The images to the right show two of the images that you'll see when you run Example 5.
All you see is the foreground image and the Windows desktop.
Transparency of the image is maintained and the VI front panel is completely transparent as well.
Thanks to engineer27 who commented in 2009 about using a graphic with a transparent background. I could not readily duplicate the described behavior, but always wanted to find a way to make it work.
Also thanks to tst for a post pointing to the Transparent Window.llb code that I used to implement the transparent front panel effect.
Finally thanks to Steve Orth who wrote the original Transparent Window VIs.
Readme file for Splash in Main_BRAT VI
The Splash in Main_BRAT VI enables you to easily create a splash screen effect in your main application VI.
LabVIEW 2015 or higher
Description of Operation
The Splash in Main_BRAT VI produces a splash screen effect by scrolling the main VI's front panel. The size of the splash screen is defined by the area occupied by a target decoration (the front-most decoration) on the main VI's front panel.
When the Splash in Main_BRAT VI runs, the main VI's front panel is resized and then scrolled so that the splash screen area is displayed.
The splash screen will close based on the setting of the "Close splash screen on (Timer)" input: If set to "Timer" (default), the splash screen closes after the number of milliseconds specified by the "Splash delay (3000 ms)" input. If set to "Event", the splash screen remains open until a user-defined event occurs.
After the splash screen closes, the main VI's front panel is set back to its original size and scrolled to show the main VI's functional front panel area.
This screenshot shows an example top-level VI before the run button has been pressed.
This screenshot shows the example splash screen that appears when the run button in the main VI is pressed.
This screenshot shows the main VI running after the splash screen has closed.
Extracting the files
The Splash in Main_BRAT VI is supplied as a zip archive containing all required items.
Additional information related to the use and operation of the Splash in Main_BRAT VI may be accessed via:
11-28-2007Modified code to read and save the original property settings of the main application VI so that the main VI's panel can be restored to the settings originally assigned by the developer.Fixed typos throughout.Minor cosmetic changes.
11-29-2007Added the "Splash in Main - Restore Main VI Properties" VI to the package. When using the "Splash in Main" VI in Event mode, you must add this VI to your main application VI to restore the original property settings of the main application VI.Updated VI documentation as required to reflect the use of this new VI.Updated palette views to show this new VI.
11-31-2010 Updated code for LabVIEW 2010.
12-07-2011 Updated code for LabVIEW 2011, implemented panel fade effect as suggested by forum member Joji, implemented several ideas as suggested by forum member Vlad Tokarev, Added two new Usage Example VIs.
03-10-2012 Updated code to add note regarding user reports that the main window flashes for a few milliseconds before the splash screen appears. Noted that this can be corrected by setting the main VI to run transparently. To do this, go to VI Properties >> Window Appearance >> Customize. Ensure that "Window runs transparently" is checked and set the value to 100%.
04-16-2013 Added the transparent front panel effect and Example 5, which demonstrates it.
01-01-2016 Updated code for LabVIEW 2015. Added Example 6, which demonstrates how to display a splash screen that shows an animated, transparent graphic. Updated code to convert the Splash in Main VI into a BRAT VI to make it even easier to add a splash screen effect to any VI. Added an exercise that guides the user in how to add a splash screen effect to a shipping LabVIEW example VI in two steps.
NOTE: Download the LabVIEW 2015 version of the code to get all of the newest features and ease-of-use enhancements.