NITPICK - a viewer and checker for Windows dialog templates

In this ordinary-looking dialog

one finds, among other problems,

misaligned items, (Click Here for larger image)

inconsistent row spacing, (Click Here for larger image)

and unaesthetic tab order. (Click Here for larger image)

Nitpick is a tool that helps to find such problems.

Environment: Stand-alone tool for use with Visual Studio resource files

Nitpick is a viewer for Windows dialog templates. It reads the dialog templates in a Windows resource (.rc) file and displays item outlines and item attributes. It can search the resource file for page names, item names, and item text. It can navigate from a displayed item to its defining entry in the resource file, and back. Nitpick can also perform a number of inspections intended to find common layout errors and problems.


NITPICK is contributed AS IS, with no warranties of any kind, including warranties of MERCHANTABILITY and FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. It is distributed only as an executable. Source code is not available.


The Nitpick executable includes a Help window with program documentation that may be copied to a text editor or word processor for printing.


Nitpick updated September 19th to address issues raised by three early users:

  • Nitpick now accepts and displays generic CONTROLs, which is what the Visual Studio dialog editor creates for Active-X controls.
  • Nitpick now accepts and displays COMBOBOXEX controls.
  • If a file path is specified on Nitpick's invocation command line, Nitpick loads and displays the file when it starts.


Download executable - 45 Kb


  • NITPICK - a viewer and checker for Windows dialog templates

    Posted by Legacy on 10/11/2001 12:00am

    Originally posted by: Rick Jones

    Great idea. I tried your program, but it doesn't like CHECKBOX.

    This seems like a standard control, and all my apps use it, so this program can't help me until this is fixed.

    Good luck.

  • Good idea but not at the right place

    Posted by Legacy on 09/18/2001 12:00am

    Originally posted by: yawar

    I like the idea, but the implementation is buggy and above all this is not a platform where you come and show off your work and not share the code.

  • No Source Code

    Posted by Legacy on 09/17/2001 12:00am

    Originally posted by: Jim Musson

    I thought the purpose of this web site was to share source code.

  • Problem with CComboBoxEx

    Posted by Legacy on 09/14/2001 12:00am

    Originally posted by: Michael A. Dice

    I get an incorect token error.

  • What about ActiveX controls?

    Posted by Legacy on 09/13/2001 12:00am

    Originally posted by: Holger Strauss

    Brilliant. I'd really like to see MS integrating this tool into their developer studio.
    However, one major drawback is that nitpick does not seem to like ActiveX controls in the dialog (syntax error, incorrect token).

  • Problem with conditional resources

    Posted by Legacy on 09/13/2001 12:00am

    Originally posted by: Victor Vogelpoel

    I'd love to check my resource file with this tool, but it fails on conditional dialogs that I have.

    My app can be compiled for three resolutions and thus a dialog is present three times with three conditions:
    IDD_ABOUTBOX, condition S240X320,
    IDD_ABOUTBOX, condition S640X240,
    IDD_ABOUTBOX, condition S640X480

    But the tool can't handle this, unfortunately. It fails on the '#else' part, below:

    #if defined(APSTUDIO_INVOKED) || defined(S240X320)
    #if defined(APSTUDIO_INVOKED)
    IDD_ABOUTBOX$(S240X320) DIALOGEX 0, 0, 158, 165
    IDD_ABOUTBOX DIALOGEX 0, 0, 158, 165
    CAPTION "About"
    FONT 8, "MS Sans Serif", 0, 0, 0x1

    Any chance of an update?


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