When disabling a container, while its children will appear to be disabled, they are not disabled in the manner that they would be if you set the enabled property to false on them directly. When a container is disabled, it will no longer respond to input from the mouse or keyboard and will apply an alpha to itself and all of its contents. However, the children of the container will not in fact be disabled and so they can still be changed programmatically. For example, if a Panel contains a NumericStepper, and outside of the Panel a Button increments and decrements the NumericStepper’s value, disabling the Panel will not prevent the Button outside of the Panel from changing the value of the NumericStepper. Disabling a container is only intended to prevent direct user interaction with the container (and its children) and to modify the appearance in order to indicate that the container is in fact disabled.
By Jacob Goldstein
May 21, 2009