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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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About the Author

Joseph M. Newcomer

United States United States
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Comments and Discussions

GeneralRe: How capture a DirectX or OpenGL window? PinmemberNeWi13-Oct-05 8:29 
Questionhow to save clipboard to file?? PinsussAnonymous1-Jan-04 21:41 
AnswerRe: how to save clipboard to file?? PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer1-Jan-04 21:55 
AnswerRe: how to save clipboard to file?? PinsussAnonymous14-Jan-04 9:08 
GeneralRe: how to save clipboard to file?? PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer14-Jan-04 9:58 
AnswerRe: how to save clipboard to file?? PinmemberNeWi13-Oct-05 8:18 
QuestionHow to convert to non-mfc? PinmemberTommy2k9-Dec-03 12:22 
AnswerRe: How to convert to non-mfc? PinmemberNeWi13-Oct-05 8:25 
It definitely can be easily done as that method uses very little MFC and all of the MFC commands used in there directly map to standard windows API calls. Just look at their help and it wil tell you what the MFC does.
Maybe you should try not writing hybrid MFC/windows code in your example and rip out all of the MFC you still have in there. I.e. no CBitMap, ClientDC or CDC.
QuestionHow can i detect a global screen capture? PinmemberMiguel Lopes27-Oct-03 14:38 
AnswerRe: How can i detect a global screen capture? PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer2-Nov-03 14:29 
QuestionHow can I print it? PinmemberAlex Evans30-Sep-03 15:32 
GeneralCapturing the whole window PinsussArne Diegenbach25-Sep-03 12:35 
GeneralI rate 5 for this article! Pinmemberxxxyyyzzz12-Feb-03 11:17 
Generalsomething that you don't need PinsussAnonymous10-Oct-02 4:44 
GeneralRe: something that you don't need PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer10-Oct-02 16:23 
Generalthere's a bug Pinsusspangtao17-Jul-02 18:45 
GeneralPossible Resource Leakage PinmemberLim Bio Liong7-Jan-02 23:27 
GeneralRe: Possible Resource Leakage PinmemberDoug Hagerman1-Mar-02 16:49 
GeneralRe: Possible Resource Leakage PinmemberLim Bio Liong1-Mar-02 18:19 
GeneralRe: Possible Resource Leakage PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer1-Mar-02 21:10 
GeneralRe: Possible Resource Leakage PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer1-Mar-02 21:03 
GeneralRe: Possible Resource Leakage PinmemberLim Bio Liong3-Mar-02 0:39 
QuestionAn easier way? PinmemberLrdElder6-Jan-02 10:25 
QuestionHow To Capture Mouse Pointer Image Also PinmemberSujeet1-Nov-01 22:41 
AnswerRe: How To Capture Mouse Pointer Image Also PinmemberJoseph M. Newcomer4-Nov-01 7:12 

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