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A TTreeView ttreeview.png is a graphical control element that presents a hierarchical view of information. Each item can have a number of subitems.

An item can be expanded to reveal subitems, if any exist, and collapsed to hide subitems.

A Short example of using TTreeview

Here is a simple example:

  • Create a new application.
  • Add an empty treeview to the form, a button1 with caption "Add Child" and a button2 with caption "Delete"
  • Assign the following code to the buttons' OnClick events. Compile and run.
procedure TForm1.Button1Click(Sender: TObject);
  n: integer;
  s: string;
  // If there are no nodes, create a root node with a parent of nil
  if TreeView1.Items.Count = 0 then
    Treeview1.Items.Add(nil,'Root Node');
  // Set up a simple text for each new node - "Node1", "Node2" etc
  n := Treeview1.Items.Count;
  s := 'Node ' + IntToStr(n);

  // Add a new node to the currently selected node
  if TreeView1.Selected <> nil then
    Treeview1.Items.AddChild(Treeview1.Selected, s);
procedure TForm1.Button2Click(Sender: TObject);

  // A procedure to recursively delete nodes
  procedure DeleteNode(ANode: TTreeNode);
    while ANode.HasChildren do 
  if TreeView1.Selected = nil then 
  // If the selected node has child nodes, first ask for confirmation
  if Treeview1.Selected.HasChildren then
    if MessageDlg('Delete node and all children?', mtConfirmation, [mbYes,mbNo], 0 ) <> mrYes then 

When running, the treeview is empty. If you click "Add Child", a root node is created. After that a child will be added to any selected node by clicking "Add Child" again.

The "Delete" button will delete the currently selected node. If it doesn't have children, it will delete it immediately, but if it has children, it will first ask.

Adding a new item in code

To add a sibling node to pre-existing node, use TTreeView.ITems.Add.

TreeView1.Items.Add(ATreeNode, 'Added node');

To add the first node, it becomes:

TreeView1.Items.Add(nil, 'First node');

Use TTreeView.Items.AddChild or AddChildObject to add child node.

TreeView1.Items.AddChild(ATreeNode, 'Child node');

Creating a TreeView which loads items only when expanding

To add the expansion symbol to a node without subitems use:

MyNode.HasChildren := True;

And then set an event handler for the OnExpanding event. In this even you should return if the expansion can actually be made or not and when yes, you should add subitems to the node. If the expansion cannot be done, the expansion symbol will be automatically removed even if you have previously set HasChildren to true.

How to move a node in TTreeview

Assuming you have UP and Down buttons to move the selected node in the TTreeview, these procedures will achieve moving the selected node.

procedure TForm1.UpBtnClick(Sender: TObject);
  // Ensure a node is selected 
  if(Treeview1.Selected <> nil) then
    // Ensure there is a previous sibling node
    if Treeview1.Selected.GetPrevSibling <> nil then
      // If we have made it this far, move it UP
      Treeview1.Selected.MoveTo(Treeview1.Selected.GetPrevSibling, naInsert);

procedure TForm1.DownBtnClick(Sender: TObject);
  // Ensure a node is selected 
  if(Treeview1.Selected <> nil) then
    // Ensure there is a next sibling node
    if Treeview1.Selected.GetNextSibling <> nil then
      // If we have made it this far, move it DOWN
      Treeview1.Selected.MoveTo(Treeview1.Selected.GetNextSibling, naInsertBehind);

Note: These procedures will only move nodes which are at the same level in the TTreeview.

Table of attachment mode of Nodes
Mode Effect
naAdd add as last sibling of target node
naAddFirst add as first sibling of target node
naAddChild add as last child of target node
naAddChildFirst add as first child of target node
naInsert insert in front of target node
naInsertBehind insert behind target node

Example of using Multiple Node Selection for Multiple User Selections

If you select your TTreeview component, go to the object inspector and in the options sections set 'tvoAllowMultiSelect' to true. Then, to iterate over the selected nodes and obtain the paths of the chosen folders or files, the following example will populate the text paths of those selected nodes to a memo field :


procedure TForm1.Button1Click(Sender: TObject);
  i: Integer;
  if TreeView1.SelectionCount=0 then
  for i:=0 to TreeView1.SelectionCount-1 do

Freeing TreeNode Data

Use the TreeView's OnDeletion event to free your object.

procedure TForm1.TreeView1Deletion(Sender: TObject; Node: TTreeNode);
  Node.Data := nil;

Using Drag and Drop in a TreeView

If you want to allow a drag and drop function in your treeview, you need to :

  1. Set to DmAutomatic, the property "Drag Mode" of your treeview
  2. Create events for onDragDrop and OnDragOver:

  Node: TTreeNode;


procedure TForm1.TreeView1DragDrop(Sender, Source: TObject; X, Y: Integer);
  Treeview1 := TTreeView(Sender);    { Sender is TreeView where the data is being dropped  }
  Node := Treeview1.GetNodeAt(x,y);  { x,y are drop coordinates (relative to the Sender)   }
                                     {   since Sender is TreeView we can evaluate          }
                                     {   a tree at the X,Y coordinates                     }
  if Source = Sender then            { drop is happening within a TreeView   }
      if Assigned(Treeview1.Selected) and     {  check if any node has been selected  }
        (Node <> Treeview1.Selected) then     {   and we're dropping to another node  }
            if Node <> nil then
              Treeview1.Selected.MoveTo(Node, naAddChild) { complete drop, by moving selected node }
              Treeview1.Selected.MoveTo(Node, naAdd);     { complete drop, by moving selected node in root }

procedure TForm1.TreeView1DragOver(Sender, Source: TObject; X, Y: Integer; State: TDragState; var Accept: Boolean);
  Accept := true;

Comments on Events

Event handlers are convenient places for developing LCL applications. There are some peculiar events for TTreeview.

When selected node is changed

OnChange, OnChanging - These events are called when selected node is shifted from one to another. OnChanging occur before the shift is done, and OnChange after actual shift. The headers of procedures are as follows. To prevent the shift, one may set AllowChange variable of OnChanging event handler to false.

procedure TForm1.TreeView1Change(Sender: TObject; Node: TTreeNode);
procedure TForm1.TreeView1Changing(Sender: TObject; Node: TTreeNode; var AllowChange: Boolean);

Care must be taken, as the node variable of both procedures points to a "new" node, which is to move to. In Delphi, the node variable of the OnChanging event handler points to the node that selection is about to leave.

When a node is inserted

When a new node is inserted, related events occur in the following order.

      1) OnNodeChanged
      2) (OnChanging): This is called if there was a previously selected node.
      3) OnSelectionChanged
      4) OnChange

When deleting a node

When the selected node is deleted, the following events occur.

     1) OnDelete
     2) OnChanging
     3) SelectionChanged
     4) OnChange :  This is called because when you delete a node, another node is selected. 

If an unselected node is deleted, e.g. programmatically, then only the OnDelete event handler is called.

When Form is Closed

OnChanging event occurs, as the selected node is "de"selected. But OnChanging eventhander is executed AFTER the form is closed. This means that you cannot access the form's other data (other controls, other variables, etc.) within the OnChanging event handler procedure.

When Drag&Drop is done

When you drag a node to another node and drop, the following events occur.

     1) OnSelectionChanged
     2) OnNodeChanged
     3) OnChange

See also

LCL Components
Component Tab Components
Standard TMainMenu • TPopupMenu • TButton • TLabel • TEdit • TMemo • TToggleBox • TCheckBox • TRadioButton • TListBox • TComboBox • TScrollBar • TGroupBox • TRadioGroup • TCheckGroup • TPanel • TFrame • TActionList
Additional TBitBtn • TSpeedButton • TStaticText • TImage • TShape • TBevel • TPaintBox • TNotebook • TLabeledEdit • TSplitter • TTrayIcon • TControlBar • TFlowPanel • TMaskEdit • TCheckListBox • TScrollBox • TApplicationProperties • TStringGrid • TDrawGrid • TPairSplitter • TColorBox • TColorListBox • TValueListEditor
Common Controls TTrackBar • TProgressBar • TTreeView • TListView • TStatusBar • TToolBar • TCoolBar • TUpDown • TPageControl • TTabControl • THeaderControl • TImageList • TPopupNotifier • TDateTimePicker
Dialogs TOpenDialog • TSaveDialog • TSelectDirectoryDialog • TColorDialog • TFontDialog • TFindDialog • TReplaceDialog • TTaskDialog • TOpenPictureDialog • TSavePictureDialog • TCalendarDialog • TCalculatorDialog • TPrinterSetupDialog • TPrintDialog • TPageSetupDialog
Data Controls TDBNavigator • TDBText • TDBEdit • TDBMemo • TDBImage • TDBListBox • TDBLookupListBox • TDBComboBox • TDBLookupComboBox • TDBCheckBox • TDBRadioGroup • TDBCalendar • TDBGroupBox • TDBGrid • TDBDateTimePicker
Data Access TDataSource • TCSVDataSet • TSdfDataSet • TBufDataset • TFixedFormatDataSet • TDbf • TMemDataset
System TTimer • TIdleTimer • TLazComponentQueue • THTMLHelpDatabase • THTMLBrowserHelpViewer • TAsyncProcess • TProcessUTF8 • TProcess • TSimpleIPCClient • TSimpleIPCServer • TXMLConfig • TEventLog • TServiceManager • TCHMHelpDatabase • TLHelpConnector
Misc TColorButton • TSpinEdit • TFloatSpinEdit • TArrow • TCalendar • TEditButton • TFileNameEdit • TDirectoryEdit • TDateEdit • TTimeEdit • TCalcEdit • TFileListBox • TFilterComboBox • TComboBoxEx • TCheckComboBox • TButtonPanel • TShellTreeView • TShellListView • TXMLPropStorage • TINIPropStorage • TJSONPropStorage • TIDEDialogLayoutStorage • TMRUManager • TStrHolder
LazControls TCheckBoxThemed • TDividerBevel • TExtendedNotebook • TListFilterEdit • TListViewFilterEdit • TLvlGraphControl • TShortPathEdit • TSpinEditEx • TFloatSpinEditEx • TTreeFilterEdit • TExtendedTabControl •
RTTI TTIEdit • TTIComboBox • TTIButton • TTICheckBox • TTILabel • TTIGroupBox • TTIRadioGroup • TTICheckGroup • TTICheckListBox • TTIListBox • TTIMemo • TTICalendar • TTIImage • TTIFloatSpinEdit • TTISpinEdit • TTITrackBar • TTIProgressBar • TTIMaskEdit • TTIColorButton • TMultiPropertyLink • TTIPropertyGrid • TTIGrid
SQLdb TSQLQuery • TSQLTransaction • TSQLScript • TSQLConnector • TMSSQLConnection • TSybaseConnection • TPQConnection • TPQTEventMonitor • TOracleConnection • TODBCConnection • TMySQL40Connection • TMySQL41Connection • TMySQL50Connection • TMySQL51Connection • TMySQL55Connection • TMySQL56Connection • TMySQL57Connection • TSQLite3Connection • TIBConnection • TFBAdmin • TFBEventMonitor • TSQLDBLibraryLoader
Pascal Script TPSScript • TPSScriptDebugger • TPSDllPlugin • TPSImport_Classes • TPSImport_DateUtils • TPSImport_ComObj • TPSImport_DB • TPSImport_Forms • TPSImport_Controls • TPSImport_StdCtrls • TPSCustomPlugin
SynEdit TSynEdit • TSynCompletion • TSynAutoComplete • TSynMacroRecorder • TSynExporterHTML • TSynPluginSyncroEdit • TSynPasSyn • TSynFreePascalSyn • TSynCppSyn • TSynJavaSyn • TSynPerlSyn • TSynHTMLSyn • TSynXMLSyn • TSynLFMSyn • TSynDiffSyn • TSynUNIXShellScriptSyn • TSynCssSyn • TSynPHPSyn • TSynTeXSyn • TSynSQLSyn • TSynPythonSyn • TSynVBSyn • TSynAnySyn • TSynMultiSyn • TSynBatSyn • TSynIniSyn • TSynPoSyn
Chart TChart • TListChartSource • TRandomChartSource • TUserDefinedChartSource • TCalculatedChartSource • TDbChartSource • TChartToolset • TChartAxisTransformations • TChartStyles • TChartLegendPanel • TChartNavScrollBar • TChartNavPanel • TIntervalChartSource • TDateTimeIntervalChartSource • TChartListBox • TChartExtentLink • TChartImageList
IPro TIpFileDataProvider • TIpHtmlDataProvider • TIpHttpDataProvider • TIpHtmlPanel
Virtual Controls TVirtualDrawTree • TVirtualStringTree • TVTHeaderPopupMenu