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CShellFileOp - Wrapper for SHFileOperation

, 26 Nov 1999
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An easy-to-use wrapper for the Win32 SHFileOperation function
  • Download demo project - 23 Kb
  • Download source files - 9 Kb <!-- Article Starts -->

    The CShellFileOp class is designed to be an easy-to-use wrapper for the Win32 SHFileOperation() API. This function is powerful, but using it requires lots of bookkeeping.

    CShellFileOp hides the complex details of the API, and instead lets the programmer use familiar C++ constructs. It also does extensive error-checking of the parameters you use. This decreases headaches, reduces the amount of time the programmer loses wading through the docs, and in general makes everyone happy.

    CShellFileOp was written with MSVC 5.0 and tested with 6.0. The sample project is now in 6.0 format. I have also tested it in Unicode on NT 4.

    Example - Using CShellFileOp to copy files

    Below is example code showing the way CShellFileOp covers SHFileOperation(). I have included complete documentation for the class in each of the zip files accompanying this article. The docs are in the file CShellFileOp_docs.html.

    void CSomeDlg::CopySomeFiles()
    CShellFileOp sfo;
    BOOL         bAPICalled;
    int          nAPIReturnVal;
        // This example copies a few files to the A: drive.
        // Pass the full paths to the files to be copied.
        sfo.AddSourceFile ( _T("c:\\windows\\command\\") );
        sfo.AddSourceFile ( _T("c:\\windows\\command\\fdisk.exe") );
        sfo.AddSourceFile ( _T("c:\\*.com") );
        // Pass the destination directory
        sfo.AddDestFile ( _T("A:\\") );
        // Set up a few flags that control the operation.
        ( FO_COPY,         // the operation type (copy in this case)
          AfxGetMainWnd(), // pointer to parent window
          FALSE,           // flag - silent mode?
          FALSE,           // flag - allow undo?
          FALSE,           // flag - should wild cards affect files only?
          TRUE,            // flag - suppress confirmation messages?
          TRUE,            // flag - suppress confirmation messages 
                           // when making directories?
          FALSE,           // flag - rename files when name collisions occur?
          FALSE );         // flag - simple progress dialog?
        // Start the operation.
        if ( sfo.Go ( &bAPICalled, &nAPIReturnVal ) )
            // The operation succeeded!
            if ( !bAPICalled )
                // SHFileOperation() wasn't called - check the info you passed
                // in to the CShellFileOp object.  The DEBUG version will
                // throw ASSERTs and/or show TRACE messages to help you out.
                // SHFileOperation() returned nonzero (failure).  That return
                // value is now in nAPIReturnVal.

    Revision History

    October 11, 1998: Version 1.0. First release.
    February 27, 2000: Version 1.1. Fixed a bug in CShellFileOp::Go() that allocated too much memory in Unicode builds.

    You can get the latest updates to this and my other articles at

  • License

    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.

    A list of licenses authors might use can be found here


    About the Author

    Michael Dunn
    Software Developer (Senior) VMware
    United States United States
    Michael lives in sunny Mountain View, California. He started programming with an Apple //e in 4th grade, graduated from UCLA with a math degree in 1994, and immediately landed a job as a QA engineer at Symantec, working on the Norton AntiVirus team. He pretty much taught himself Windows and MFC programming, and in 1999 he designed and coded a new interface for Norton AntiVirus 2000.
    Mike has been a a developer at Napster and at his own lil' startup, Zabersoft, a development company he co-founded with offices in Los Angeles and Odense, Denmark. Mike is now a senior engineer at VMware.

    He also enjoys his hobbies of playing pinball, bike riding, photography, and Domion on Friday nights (current favorite combo: Village + double Pirate Ship). He would get his own snooker table too if they weren't so darn big! He is also sad that he's forgotten the languages he's studied: French, Mandarin Chinese, and Japanese.
    Mike was a VC MVP from 2005 to 2009.

    Comments and Discussions

    GeneralOnly copying done not replacing !!! Pinmember"_$h@nky_"29-Jul-08 1:02 
    QuestionRe: Only copying done not replacing !!! PinmvpDavidCrow29-Apr-10 11:29 
    GeneralUsing SHFileOperation real return values Pinmembererangi3-Oct-06 3:13 
    GeneralGood work PinmemberFranc Morales7-May-06 20:44 
    QuestionCustom Error message? PinmemberBernhard8-Jan-06 21:27 
    AnswerRe: Custom Error message? PinsitebuilderMichael Dunn8-Jan-06 21:55 
    GeneralRe: Custom Error message? PinmemberBernhard8-Jan-06 22:25 
    GeneralPosition of window PinmemberFred_12322-Oct-04 3:45 
    GeneralRe: Position of window PinsitebuilderMichael Dunn27-Oct-04 14:52 
    GeneralRe: Position of window PinmemberKenGuru27-Sep-05 4:01 
    GeneralLittle improvement Pinmemberpeterchen11-Aug-04 15:42 
    GeneralNotifications PinmembermailMonty16-Jun-04 0:36 
    GeneralProgress Dialog Pinmembertyounsi11-May-04 17:18 
    GeneralErrors compiling with Visual Studio 2003 Pinmemberkimmov28-Feb-04 2:27 
    GeneralRe: Errors compiling with Visual Studio 2003 PinsitebuilderMichael Dunn28-Feb-04 7:11 
    GeneralFilenames missing Pinmemberlufutusi17-Nov-03 22:18 
    GeneralThe source of my files to copy is a network drive PinmemberIHR18-Dec-02 13:14 
    GeneralRe: The source of my files to copy is a network drive PinmemberIHR13-Aug-03 5:32 
    GeneralRe: The source of my files to copy is a network drive Pinmemberveraart24-Feb-06 1:57 
    GeneralConstant Created date PinsussNaju9-Sep-02 1:25 
    GeneralRe: Constant Created date PinmemberBlake Miller26-Nov-02 6:12 
    GeneralSHFileOperation Error Codes PinmemberAnonymous7-Jul-02 14:58 
    GeneralRe: SHFileOperation Error Codes Pinmembernoirs213-Apr-05 6:00 
    GeneralRe: SHFileOperation Error Codes PinmemberBartosz Bien5-Sep-05 2:13 
    AnswerRe: SHFileOperation Error Codes PinmemberIAteTheWholeThing220-Sep-06 23:27 

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