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System Tray Icons - Minimize Your Application to the SysTray

, 6 Nov 2000 CPOL
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Minimize your application to system tray instead of the taskbar
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This article illustrates the use of Shell_NotifyIcon to create and manage System Tray icons. The article explains the basics of this operation and assists you in creating your own 'Minimize To Tray' applications. The source code provided with this article is designed to work with dialog-based applications, but it can easily be modified to work with a CFrameWnd or CWnd based application.

Creating and Using Tray Icons

To create a Tray Icon, you need to call the following shell function: -

BOOL Shell_NotifyIcon( DWORD dwMessage, PNOTIFYICONDATA pnid );

The dwMessage parameter specifies the action to be taken - NIM_ADD, NIM_DELETE, NIM_MODIFY adds, deletes and modifies tray icons respectively.

The pnid parameter is used to customize, create, delete and obtain data from the Tray Icon. (See the MSDN Library for more details about this structure.)

Creating The Application

1. Create a new VC++ dialog based project. For this example, I will call this project MyTray which will contain the CMyTrayApp and CMyTrayDlg classes.

2. Download and extract the DialogTray source code to the root of the project folder

3. From the Project->Add To Project menu, select Files and then select TrayDialog.h and TrayDialog.cpp. This will add a new class to your project named CTrayDialog.

4. Replace the CMyTrayDlg base class with CTrayDialog.

class CMyTrayDlg : public CDialog


#include "TrayDialog.h"

class CMyTrayDlg : public CTrayDialog

5. Replace the other occurrences of CDialog in the MyTrayDlg.cpp file as follows :-

CMyTrayDlg::CMyTrayDlg(CWnd* pParent /*=NULL*/)
  : CDialog(CMyTrayDlg::IDD, pParent)


CMyTrayDlg::CMyTrayDlg(CWnd* pParent /*=NULL*/)	
    : CTrayDialog(CMyTrayDlg::IDD, pParent)

6. Create a menu resource and name it IDR_MENU1

7. In the InitDialog member function, enter the following:

TraySetToolTip("ToolTip for tray icon");

8. Modify the IDD_MYTRAY _DIALOG resource to have a minimize box.

9. Build and run the application

NB : To add tray menu item handlers use the class wizard.

Displaying the tray icon all the time

Simply add a TrayShow() statement to InitDialog() in CMyTrayDlg.cpp, and call TraySetMinimizeToTray(FALSE) to disable minimizing to the tray.

The events that occur in the tray are captured through the following functions:

virtual void OnTrayLButtonDown(CPoint pt);
virtual void OnTrayLButtonDblClk(CPoint pt);

virtual void OnTrayRButtonDown(CPoint pt);
virtual void OnTrayRButtonDblClk(CPoint pt);

virtual void OnTrayMouseMove(CPoint pt);

Feel free to add more events or to improve on these ones.


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


About the Author

Daniel Zilcsak
Software Developer
United States United States
No Biography provided

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Comments and Discussions

GeneralSystem get slow... Pin
Member 385006728-Feb-08 21:52
memberMember 385006728-Feb-08 21:52 
Generalsmall but useful demo Pin
lilesh10-Oct-07 22:33
memberlilesh10-Oct-07 22:33 
QuestionHow can I get my app on the tray at the very beginning? Pin
pjvv126-Sep-07 7:31
memberpjvv126-Sep-07 7:31 
AnswerSolution Pin
lilesh10-Oct-07 23:01
memberlilesh10-Oct-07 23:01 
i looked into in but i didn't get reason why SW_HIDE doesn't work OnInit
May be the reason is that window hasn't yet created ..(i don't know the exact reason)
but, i have another solution , you can create your own message handler and postmessage to it, i have written code here just go through it.

#define MY_MESSAGE WM_USER+123

in oninit write,
BOOL CTempDlg::OnInitDialog()

return TRUE; // return TRUE unless you set the focus to a control

in message map ON_MESSAGE(MY_MESSAGE, functohidewindow)

and lastly

void CTempDlg::functohidewindow()

may be this is not the best approch

Questionsystray without window Pin
chergui3-Apr-07 1:36
memberchergui3-Apr-07 1:36 
GeneralIn VC++ 2003, there's error Pin
tlbf10-Jan-07 2:46
membertlbf10-Jan-07 2:46 
GeneralRe: In VC++ 2003, there's error Pin
child00728-Jan-08 17:32
memberchild00728-Jan-08 17:32 
GeneralRe: In VC++ 2003, there's error Pin
Jerry Peterson14-May-09 3:15
memberJerry Peterson14-May-09 3:15 
Generaltray disappear after mouse over Pin
geoPsyc4-Dec-06 13:05
membergeoPsyc4-Dec-06 13:05 
GeneralRe: tray disappear after mouse over Pin
geoPsyc4-Dec-06 13:24
membergeoPsyc4-Dec-06 13:24 
GeneralRe: tray disappear after mouse over Pin
lilesh10-Oct-07 23:16
memberlilesh10-Oct-07 23:16 
QuestionRe: tray disappear after mouse over Pin
Ambiguities23-Oct-07 17:53
memberAmbiguities23-Oct-07 17:53 
GeneralRe: tray disappear after mouse over Pin
Dau Le Trung4-Apr-12 17:29
memberDau Le Trung4-Apr-12 17:29 
Questioncan you help me? about tray icon Pin
David121519-Jun-06 17:08
memberDavid121519-Jun-06 17:08 
GeneralCompiling on VIsual C++ 7.0 Pin
Sychad19-Apr-06 7:34
memberSychad19-Apr-06 7:34 
GeneralRe: Compiling on VIsual C++ 7.0 Pin
child00728-Jan-08 17:31
memberchild00728-Jan-08 17:31 
GeneralDisplaying the menu in the icon tray problem Pin
chris17514-Mar-06 8:01
memberchris17514-Mar-06 8:01 
GeneralRe: Displaying the menu in the icon tray problem Pin
Dean Michaud24-Mar-06 4:30
memberDean Michaud24-Mar-06 4:30 
QuestionItem1=ShowWindow? Pin
Am0k30-Jan-06 4:12
memberAm0k30-Jan-06 4:12 
GeneralIssue With CE Pin
oilos16-Aug-05 1:23
memberoilos16-Aug-05 1:23 
GeneralProblem Pin
harpreetsbamrah23-Jun-05 20:24
memberharpreetsbamrah23-Jun-05 20:24 
GeneralRe: Problem PinPopular
harpreetsbamrah23-Jun-05 20:44
memberharpreetsbamrah23-Jun-05 20:44 
Generalsorry Pin
sicks18-Jun-05 6:42
membersicks18-Jun-05 6:42 
Generalproblem Pin
sicks18-Jun-05 6:29
membersicks18-Jun-05 6:29 
GeneralRe: problem Pin
AleJ15-Jun-06 5:36
memberAleJ15-Jun-06 5:36 

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