Win32 API Tutorials, Tips, and FAQs

C/C++ Tutorials

Win API programming is not an entry level task. If you are not reasonable competent in C or C++, you really need to have a basic mastery of the language. Coronado offers tutorials for both C and C++, among other languages. A good grasp of the material covered in them will get you through API programming with no problem.

Henrik Sorensen's brief C tutorial is a good place for the complete newbie to begin. It is quite informal and offers a fast overview. Then, go get the Coranado tutorial.

Bruce Eckel has made the electronic versions of his books Thinking in Java and Thinking in C++ available. His home site also has the books, and some other material.

Win API Tutorials

Reliable Software also has a good tutorial to get you started with Win32 API programming. It covers the basic boilerplate needed for any Windows app, explains the messaging architecture central to Window programs, and continues on to explain how to use controls, GDI objects, and more.

The Horse's Mouth. The is a somewhat dated Microsoft resource, but there are some valuable details on common controls and other UI topics.

For a more academic approach, try these class notes. Just ignore the Developer Studio specific material.


Chris has some basic tutorials, but also several short articles on more complex topics.

SGI has a tutorial for OpenGL programming in Win32.


Steve Loughran maintains a FAQ. Bring your specific questions here.

And, now for the MetaFAQ. This is regularly posted on newsgroups like You will want to read this family of newsgroups.

Archive-name: ms-windows/
Last-modified: 1999-03-28
Last-FAQ-Update: Mar 24 1994

This is a regularly scheduled weekly posting, which explains how you can
obtain a copy of the various Windows FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

The Windows [3.x]FAQ and Windows [3.1] Programmer FAQ (which unfortunately
have not been updated since 1994) are available from:

The Win32 Programmer FAQ, by Steve Loughran, is located:

Zafir Anjum's excellent MFC Programmer's SourceBook is another essential
resource for an MFC developer.  It is available as:

DevCentral's Win32, C++ and Java programming tutorials can be found at:

Randy Morin maintains a programmer knowledge base for Windows developers at:

The device driver development FAQs (by Tom Divine, Stephen Lewin-Berlin, Jamie
Harnahan and David Castells i Rufas) are available as:
    Windows 3.x/95: (SL-B)
    Windows 95: (TD)
    Windows NT: (JH)

Intec has a collection of Windows NT DDK resources available at:

Guido Wischrop also has a web site for Windows NT driver development, but
in German:

There is also an extensive list of Internet resources for Windows developers:

The Winsock Programmer's FAQ, by Warren Young and Mark Towfiq, is at:

The Windows 95/NT NDIS programming FAQ is at:

The Windows 95/NT TDI development FAQ is at:

The Windows 95 IFS FAQ is at:

The WinHelp FAQ is maintained by Charlie Munroe:

The Cetus Team maintains an extensive set of object-oriented design and
development links at their web site:

The best resource for InstallShield, the de facto standard for Windows-
based installations, is InstallSite, as managed by Stefan Krueger:

The Windows NT FAQ, by John Savill, can be found at:
    Primary site -- UK
    North American mirror site -- Canada

There are also two specialized Windows NT FAQs:
    Windows NT Admin FAQ
     Windows NT Fax FAQ

Finally, it is frequently worthwhile to check Microsoft's knowledge base
for the questions as well.  You can access this through the Internet at

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