2a Visual Basic 2010 – Working With Toolbars – Making Toolbar Buttons Larger

Toolbars are made relatively easy with VB.Net.  They are just another control you add to the form. The normal place for a tool bar is just under the menu bars. Once you add the toolbar you can click on it and you will see a generic button appear. Once you give it a name or other property it becomes permanent.

Typically a toolbar is full of easily recognizable buttons that are easy to recognize and make working with the program quicker to use. You can do a web search for free icons and find a ton of them. Some are free for any use, some are free for non-commercial use, and some are paid.

Here is a sample Wordpad like project to create a simple word processor in a program perhaps to edit and dress up reports generated by the program:


I have added some icons to the buttons but if you can see them they don’t come out very well, and they are hard to see, especially if you are getting up in years.

The solution is to make the icons bigger. Look at this:


The above illustrations are smaller than actual size. Here’s a before and after, actual size comparison:

FirstFiveButtonsBefore FirstFiveButtonsAfter

If you are young you may prefer the smaller icons.  I can hardly make them out without moving my head closer to the screen.  The larger ones work better for me and a lot of older people.

There are four steps in accomplishing this upgrade after you have added the appropriate buttons and named them.

  1. Change Autosize property to False
  2. Resize the image file for the icon in a paint so that it is just a little smaller than the size of the button. I have 44 x 44 pixel buttons so I made 40 x 40 pixel images. Then import that image using the Image property.
  3. Change ImageScaling property to None
  4. Change the Size property of the button to 44, 44

Lastly, I have also shown in the illustration below that you should change the text to some simple help tip appropriate for the button because this becomes the tool tip.

Properties1 Properties2

Happy programming.


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