Click here to Skip to main content
Click here to Skip to main content

Easy to use class for ScreenCapture to printer

, 9 May 2004 CPOL
Rate this:
Please Sign up or sign in to vote.
A class for easily capturing screen and printing to default printer.


For a project, I'm actually working on, I needed a way to easily create screen shots of the foreground dialog and to print the image directly to the default printer. As I couldn't find the right solution ready for use, I wrote a quick 'n dirty own class, based on the many articles found at The Code Project.

The attached code builds a very easy to use screen capture function, which can be called in a button callback for example. It is possible to adjust the capture area and the print orientation. The desired area will be captured and printed.

Using the code

As said, one of the aims was, to make the class as easy to use as possible.

  1. Add the files PrntScreen.cpp and PrntScreen.h to your project.
  2. In your application (or dialog class etc.), add the following line:
    #include "PrntScreen.h"
  3. At the place, where you want to capture and print the screen, add the following lines to your code:

    Example 1:

    CPrntScreen * ScrCap;
    ScrCap = new CPrntScreen();  //create instance
    ScrCap->DoPrntScreen();  //execute capture function
    delete ScrCap;  //remove instance


    CPrntScreen * ScrCap;
    ScrCap = new CPrntScreen("Some error ocurred!!!","Message");
    delete ScrCap;

Example 1 uses just the default parameters, whereas the Example 2 uses available options.



The constructor of the class is defined as CPrntScreen(char* sErrTxt, char* sCaption), thus accepting two parameters. The idea was to permit customizing the error message box for your own needs/language.

Description of the parameters:

  • char* sErrTxt = pointer to characters pointing to a desired error message.
  • char* sCaption = pointer to characters pointing to a desired message box caption.
    if the parameters are omitted, the default text/caption will be shown in case of an error.


The class contains just one function, DoPrntScreen(int nArea, int nOrientation, bool bDialog).
Description of the parameters:

  • nArea determines the area of screen to be captured, with:
    • 0 = Whole screen
    • 1 = Foreground window
    • 2 = Foreground window - Client area
      If parameter is omitted, 0 (Whole Screen) will be used by default

  • nOrientation determines the print orientation, with:
    • 1 = Portrait (you may also use DMORIENT_PORTRAIT)
    • 2 = Landscape (you may also use DMORIENT_LANDSCAPE)
      This parameter is only used, if bDialog=false
      If parameter is omitted, 2 (Portrait) will be used by default

  • bDialog controls, if a printer dialog will be shown:
    • false = Use default printer without showing dialog
    • true = Show printer dialog
      If parameter is omitted, false (Default Printer) will be used by default


  • Version 1.0: First version
  • Version 1.1: Updated version.
    Following changes where done:
    • Defined default parameters for even easier use (see example 1 above).
    • Introduced a flag for enabling the use of the printer dialog.
    • Changed the stretching function. Now the captured area will be stretched to printer page in the relation, it has to the whole screen. Capturing of smaller dialogs will not anymore cause huge printouts Smile | :) Having done this, it is definitely best to set print orientation to landscape!
    • The above changes are compatible to the old version, thus no code change is needed when using the new version. Just drop in the new code. Only the printout may change proportions, due to the change of stretching Frown | :(
  • Version 1.1A: Bug fix, fixing an error which caused empty pages on some printers.
  • Version 1.2: Bug fix (hopefully) and new features. This new version includes:
    • The code suggested by Dieter Hammer, which should eliminate that nasty blank page problem
    • Correct printing of dialogs, which were partially pushed out of desktop area
    • Proportional correct printout, independent of paper orientation
    • Checking, if printer is actually capable of printing images
    • And I have added a demo project. The prj file is for VC7, sorry, I don't have VC6 anymore. Just look to the last callback handlers in "PrintDlg.cpp"


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Albert Hermann
Web Developer
Brazil Brazil
IT Programmer since 1987

Comments and Discussions

GeneralMy vote of 3 Pinmemberdiqiudiguo11-Sep-13 22:57 
QuestionLicensing Terms PinmemberScott Bartine8-Dec-11 6:44 
AnswerRe: Licensing Terms Pinmembera. hermann15-Dec-11 1:16 
AnswerRe: Licensing Terms PinmemberAlbert Hermann15-Dec-11 1:45 
GeneralNO MOVE DIALOG Pinmembercsanmartin220-Nov-06 6:51 
GeneralRe: NO MOVE DIALOG PinmemberAlbert Hermann20-Nov-06 9:10 
GeneralRe: NO MOVE DIALOG Pinmembercsanmartin220-Nov-06 22:32 
GeneralSome problems faced Pinmemberdacylet1-Mar-06 5:12 
GeneralDetected memory leaks! Pinmemberl00p1n626-Feb-06 3:40 
GeneralA bug? OS=Win98 PinmemberLemonx22-Feb-06 16:26 
GeneralGreat work & little question... PinmemberAlberto_Canabal11-Jan-06 3:59 
GeneralRe: Great work & little question... PinmemberAlbert Hermann11-Jan-06 7:57 
GeneralThank you so much! Pinmemberyeunri7-Sep-05 21:12 
Jokewow 2 - really easy to use PinmemberStephan Simson25-Aug-05 5:07 
GeneralA little problem, memory leak PinsussSaruth3-Jul-05 23:03 
GeneralRe: A little problem, memory leak PinmemberAlbert Hermann4-Jul-05 2:03 
GeneralIntercepting a print job PinmemberAlexEvans2-Jul-05 17:43 
GeneralRe: Intercepting a print job PinmemberAlbert Hermann4-Jul-05 2:09 
GeneralGreat Code PinmemberMacca187-Jun-05 5:42 
GeneralRe: Great Code PinmemberAlbert Hermann7-Jun-05 6:59 
GeneralAmazing job!!!! PinmemberDP TWO13-May-05 11:24 
GeneralRe: Amazing job!!!! PinmemberAlbert Hermann7-Jun-05 7:04 
GeneralGreat! One suggestion Pinmembera.damm28-Apr-05 21:00 
GeneralRe: Great! One suggestion PinmemberAlbert Hermann2-May-05 6:46 
Generalblurry text Pinmembermikeorama1234520-Oct-04 10:40 
GeneralI was going mad! but thanks to this article I am not anymore;) Pinmemberjoli746916-Oct-04 0:28 
GeneralWow~ Pinmemberrider7616-Sep-04 0:24 
Generalgetdevicecaps PinmemberAlex Evans14-Jul-04 21:13 
GeneralRe: getdevicecaps PinmemberAlbert Hermann15-Jul-04 3:29 
GeneralRe: getdevicecaps PinmemberAlex Evans19-Jul-04 17:30 
GeneralGreat job - thanks Pinmembermvno4-May-04 13:07 
My boss asked me to print the display (which includes a map of North America). Within minutes (using your code)... problem solved.
Thanks for the posting.
Just one thing. I'm printing from a dual screen setup which has a resolution of 1200x3200, so I had to modify the algorithm to print the correct size.
GeneralNow I need to print a dialog Pinmembermais768-Apr-04 0:16 
GeneralRe: Now I need to print a dialog PinmemberAlbert Hermann8-Apr-04 11:25 
GeneralRe: Now I need to print a dialog Pinmembermais769-Apr-04 0:37 
GeneralClient area and toolbar Pinmembercraigsmith00718-Feb-04 17:57 
GeneralRe: Client area and toolbar PinmemberAlbert Hermann2-Mar-04 5:09 
Generalthis works PinmemberDieter Hammer7-Jan-04 2:33 
GeneralRe: this works PinmemberAlbert Hermann20-Jan-04 9:33 
GeneralRe: this works Pinsussfauito5-May-04 6:06 
GeneralRe: this works Pinmembermvno5-May-04 10:13 
GeneralRe: this works PinmemberAlbert Hermann7-May-04 10:59 
QuestionCould you send me a demo project? PinmemberK@iser22-Nov-03 12:48 
AnswerRe: Could you send me a demo project? PinmemberAlbert Hermann24-Nov-03 3:55 
GeneralBig sorry for the mess PinmemberAlbert Hermann25-Sep-03 11:39 
GeneralSmall suggestion PinmemberJohn Noël25-Sep-03 2:18 
Generalprinting from time to time PinmemberMartin_Leh14-Aug-03 8:09 
GeneralNo luck printing :( Pinmemberoscar_r6-Aug-03 10:44 
Generalhmm... Pinmembereagertolearn3-Aug-03 7:03 
GeneralRe: hmm... PinmemberMessnerEW18-Feb-04 21:31 
Generalworks but prints blank pages PinmemberJBrady31-Jul-03 7:49 

General General    News News    Suggestion Suggestion    Question Question    Bug Bug    Answer Answer    Joke Joke    Rant Rant    Admin Admin   

Use Ctrl+Left/Right to switch messages, Ctrl+Up/Down to switch threads, Ctrl+Shift+Left/Right to switch pages.

| Advertise | Privacy | Terms of Use | Mobile
Web03 | 2.8.150327.1 | Last Updated 10 May 2004
Article Copyright 2003 by Albert Hermann
Everything else Copyright © CodeProject, 1999-2015
Layout: fixed | fluid