|If you are just getting started with the PFC, I strongly recommend using this PFC CD (plus 200+ page resource manual) to learn PFC.|
To get started with the PFC, first get familiar with "What is the PFC?" at:
Then, peruse through the Potpourri of "PFC Services" that are available to the PFC programmer at:
There are some helpful PFC slides (for Newbies to Experts alike) from Powersoft Conference '98/ '97 at:
'98 - PM602 - Beginning with the PFC: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM602.exe
'97 - PM 76 - PowerBuilder Foundation Class Library - by PFC Dev Team Mbr Brian Grimm, & Jackie Green, PS Tech Support: http://www.sybase.com/Events/psuc97/cdrom/pm076.zip
'97 - PM 41 - Techniques and Design Strategies to Use on the PFC Library - by Howard Block, administrator of pfcsig: http://www.sybase.com/Events/psuc97/cdrom/pm041.zip
'97 - PM 40 - New Features in the PFC Library (PFC 6.0) - by PFC Development Teamsters - Mark Overbey and Claudio Quant: http://www.sybase.com/Events/psuc97/cdrom/pm040.zip
'97 - PM 77 - Customizing the PFC Library - by Earl Clark, Powersoft: http://www.sybase.com/Events/psuc97/cdrom/pm077.zip
'98 - PM603 - Rearchitecting a "Legacy" PowerBuilder Application to Use the PFC: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM603.exe
'98 - PM320 - Using the PFC 6.0 LUW Service: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM320.exe
'98 - PM321 - Using the PFC 6.0 TreeView Control: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM321.exe
'98 - PM322 - Increasing Distributed PowerBuilder Speed with ORB-Type PFC Services: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM322.exe
'98 - PM605 - Case Study: Extending the PFC Security Module: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM605.exe
'98 - PM606 - Stored Procedures, Databases, and the PFC: http://www.sybase.com/events/psuc98/presentations/PM606.exe
'99 - AD262 - Programming with the PowerBuilder Foundation Class (PFC)
http://www.sybase.com/events/techwave99/presentations/Ad262.zip (logon ID and password protected)
Next, it is helpful to read through the PFC User's Guide Book that comes with PowerBuilder. (They come on the CD. Or, you can order hardcopies, an entire set for only $95. Or, you may access them via the web.) There you will find a PFC Overview, a Tutorial (with step-by-step instructions to guide you through the basics of creating a new PFC app), and some very detailed descriptions of the services and concepts.
PFC User's Guide
PFC Object Reference
The PFC also comes with a few Example PFC Applications that you can play with and look through. In PowerBuilder 6.0, there are lots of examples, something for every service. Also, be sure to look at the "Quick Start" PFC application.
The PFC Online Help is very good... Do not underestimate the power of the PFC Online Help... So whenever you are in the script and you are wondering about a particular PFC function/event, all you have to do is position your cursor on the function name/event and press shift-F1 and voila! the PFC Help will describe it. Get familiar with using the PFC Help... You will use it a lot!
A checklist of the "Steps to create a new PFC application" is at:
Interested in a product to jumpstart your PFC project? HOW and Object Composer are products worth considering.
After you have learned about all that the PFC has to offer, but before you dive right into coding your application, decide whether or not your project needs or would benefit from buying a 3rd party class library product to extend the PFC. There are several out there, for example...
In addition, there are also some PFC class libraries designed for distributed and web (EA Server) applications. For example...
For more information, please see "PFC Class Libraries" at the "Top Tools" CheatSheet.
Also, the PFC Guide web site answers the question "I would like to learn PFC. Where Do I start?"[Borrowed from Boris] at:
Notes: At the above site, Boris Gasin will tell you about white paper to read on Service Based Architecture by Bill Green... It is very deep though, so don't worry, just make it through the first Chapter or so to begin with... (You know how smart them Team Powersoft gurus are.) ... Also, so that you know what to concentrate on, Boris will tell you which PFC topics to get real familiar with first off... Also notice that there are links to some of his listed key topics in the PFC Guide's FAQ.
Hey, bookmark >> http://www.pfcguide.com <<right away......Or simply memorize "pfcguide"!
The PFC Guide has everything and anything you'll ever need to know about the PFC right there, all organized and at your fingertips! ... For instance, get to know the PFC services (what do they do, common questions about each) at:
And breeze through all the Powersoft PFC-related Faxbacks at:
And, Yes! There are some fantastic PFC books... This first book is a great way to learn PFC, tutorial style...
And these two are "Must Haves" for any PFCer...
PowerBuilder Foundation Class Library Professional Reference
(Team Powersoft Series)
To order: http://www.amazon.com
Authors: Howard Block, Millard Brown, Boris Gasin, William Green, Andy Tauber
Contributions by: Steve Benfield, Kent Marsh and William Rompala
PFC Programmer's Reference Manual
To order: http://www.amazon.com
Author: Richard Brooks
Appendices by: Sharon Weinstrom Buntz, Jason Cohen, Glenn G. Dmello, Ken Howe, Greg Schultz, Brian Suter
And be sure to check out the excellent PFC articles in PB magazines such as PowerTimes, PowerBuilder Developers Journal and back issues of PowerBuilder Advisor. Many are also available online, and they contain current, practical, helpful and yes interesting PFC info... Don't miss Boris Gasin's "PFC Place" in the International electronic magazine called PowerTimes. Also, don't miss John Olson at the "PFC Corner" in the PowerBuilder Developers Journal.
Also, it is really worth it to go to a PFC training class. The Sybase ones are very good (http://slc.sybase.com/guide/index.html ), and there are some excellent advanced PFC classes available as well... For example, inspiring seminars and CDs by Steve Benfield... See:
Last but not least, don't be afraid to look at the PFC code itself! All of the source code is right there at your fingertips. Plus, the PFC code is a fine example of how to code, written by the finest programming minds to be found... And so getting to know it helps your programming skills as well. Also, the more you know about what's under the covers, the deeper your understanding will grow.
And, don't worry, if you have any questions along the way...
...the PFC mail lists and newsgroups are just a search...
...or an e-mail...
Sharon Weinstrom Buntz
8-) ~~ Special thanks to Sean Henriques for his inspiration for this little write-up... And thanks to Yannick Lockhead and Brian Grimm for their inspiration to keep it fresh and updated.