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Screen Capture to the Clipboard

, 5 Apr 2001
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How do you capture the bitmap of a window? This little download shows how, and places the bitmap on the clipboard.


One of the common questions that I find on the microsoft.public forums is "How do I get a bitmap of a window on the screen?" Well, here's a little subroutine I used extensively in writing Win32 Programming, because I realized that for the number of illustrations I wanted for the book, there was no hope of doing screen captures and then hand-editing just the control I wanted to show. So all my Explorers have a little button somewhere that performs a screen capture of the example window and drops it into the clipboard. I could then paste it into the document, or paste it into an editor and save it as a TIFF or JPEG as well.


void toClipboard(CWnd * wnd, BOOL FullWnd);


#include "stdafx.h"
#include "toclip.h" 
*                                 toClipboard
* Inputs:
*       CWnd * wnd: Window whose contents are to be sent 
*                   to the clipboard
*       BOOL FullWnd: TRUE for entire window, 
*                     FALSE for client area
* Result: void
* Effect: 
*       Copies the contents of the client area or the window
*       to the clipboard in CF_BITMAP format.

void toClipboard(CWnd * wnd, BOOL FullWnd)
     CDC dc;
        { /* full window */
         HDC hdc = ::GetWindowDC(wnd->m_hWnd);
        } /* full window */
        { /* client area only */
         HDC hdc = ::GetDC(wnd->m_hWnd);
        } /* client area only */

     CDC memDC;

     CBitmap bm;
     CRect r;

     CString s;
     CSize sz(r.Width(), r.Height());
     CBitmap * oldbm = memDC.SelectObject(&bm);
     memDC.BitBlt(0, 0,,, &dc, 0, 0, SRCCOPY);

     ::SetClipboardData(CF_BITMAP, bm.m_hObject);

     bm.Detach();  // make sure bitmap not deleted with CBitmap object

The views expressed in these essays are those of the author, and in no way represent, nor are they endorsed by, Microsoft.

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Copyright © 1999 All Rights Reserved


This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

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About the Author

Joseph M. Newcomer
United States United States
PhD, Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University, 1975
Certificate in Forensic Science and the Law, Duquesne University, 2008

Co-Author, [i]Win32 Programming[/i]

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Comments and Discussions

GeneralOther bitmap formats Pin
NeWi13-Oct-05 8:14
memberNeWi13-Oct-05 8:14 
GeneralRe: Other bitmap formats Pin
NeWi13-Oct-05 8:35
memberNeWi13-Oct-05 8:35 
GeneralRe: Other bitmap formats Pin
Joseph M. Newcomer18-Oct-05 8:46
memberJoseph M. Newcomer18-Oct-05 8:46 

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