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VB Tech Tip: Better Base Addresses for In-Process Components

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Developers can improve the performance of their in-process COM components by assigning appropriate DLL base addresses. Scott Loban describes a strategy for Visual Basic 6.0 developers.
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In-process COM components such as dynamic link libraries and ActiveX controls are an important part of most Microsoft Windows-based applications. Visual Basic 6.0 (VB) provides a number of compiler options that can be used to improve the performance and scalability of these components. One of these options—and the one that is probably the least widely understood—is the DLL base address. This option can be accessed from the Compile tab of the Project Properties dialog box (see Figure 1).

Figure 1 The Compile tab of the Project Properties dialog box.

Base Addresses

On 32-bit Windows systems, each process runs in its own virtual memory address space to help ensure that programs don't conflict with one other, with one application potentially modifying memory that another application depends on. This address space contains the running binary code and the data used by the application. In addition, the system loads any in-process components that are used by each application into this same address space.

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