Book: Visual C++ Windows Shell Programming
Publisher: Wrox Press
The Windows shell provides much of the look and feel of the Windows 98/Windows NT 4 desktop, and it offers many new possibilities for writing better programs. Visual C++ 6 Windows Shell Programming provides an excellent guide to understanding and programming the Windows shell, in a book filled with expert tips and useful code.
The book begins with the basics of the Windows desktop and taskbar and gives an overview of programming techniques. Besides the simpler shell C API, there are COM objects for manipulating the shell. Next the book covers file programming, such as finding and copying files, before moving on to explain how to modify shortcuts. The author presents multiple techniques for opening new programs and documents and shows how to modify the system icon tray.
Later, the book turns to Windows shell COM objects and looks at working with folders and other desktop objects. Material on the Windows Scripting Host (for batch processing) is also very useful. The author creates a sample Windows metafile (.WMF) viewer as a fuller example. The book closes with some notable material on the new Web View feature in Windows 98.
Even if you don’t plan on programming extensively with the Windows shell, the material in this book can demystify what the shell is and how it operates. Reading Visual C++ 6 Windows Shell Programming can help you understand how Windows 98 and the Active Desktop really work while teaching you to be a skilled C++ Windows shell developer. –Richard DraganWindows 98 is the culmination of many improvements to what is now a fully-fledged, 32-bit, COM-based operating system. With suitable instruction, you can push the Windows shell to performing complex actions, and customize it using C++/ATL programs. Until now, the documentation for Windows shell programming has been poor. This book is about telling you exactly how to use the tools available, and when each tool is appropriate. There’s coverage of the Windows API, the Windows Scripting Host, and shell and namespace extensions that use ATL and the shell’s COM object model. Information on these topics at this level has been scarce, but the author brings them all together in this volume.