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Programming Microsoft® Windows® with C# (Developer Reference)

4.1 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0735613706
ISBN-10: 0735613702
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Aimed at aspiring C# programmers of all levels, legendary Windows expert Charles Petzold's Programming Windows with C# provides an extremely in-depth and intelligent tutorial to the APIs underpinning Microsoft's .NET Framework.

For a generation of programmers, Petzold's Programming Windows: The Definitive Guide to the Win32 API provided a virtual bible on how to get started with Windows development. This massive, handsomely bound hardcover edition attempts the same breadth of coverage for Microsoft's new C# language and the new .NET. With several examples clearly inspired by the earlier C title, this book demonstrates the author's keen eye for showing off and explaining the capabilities of low-level APIs to good effect.

The book first outlines basic "Hello World" examples for both a console and Windows Forms. Next, there's coverage of basic support classes (like points and rectangles) before turning toward using these structures in extensive sections on graphics programming. Petzold's traditional strengths as a computer author are in ample evidence here, with many short examples that exercise the capabilities of the new .NET APIs.

Veteran readers will recognize the basic shape of the early Win32 title in the organization of this (completely rewritten) C# version in the flow of topics from graphics, keyboard, mouse and timers, and the like. (One production note here is that the order of later chapters does jump around somewhat, circling back to graphics topics several times instead of presenting related APIs in order.)

The sections on graphics transforms and how to manipulate images are worthy of note. There's excellent coverage of the possibilities of working with text and fonts output in .NET. Nifty working samples for several types of clocks and shape-drawing demos will let you explore graphical APIs in detail.

Several chapters cover basic Windows Forms control programming with buttons, labels, and edit controls and then splitters, ListView, and TreeView controls. This volume closes out with references to files and streams, and math and string APIs. For any developer who wants to create state-of-the-art, "traditional" client-side software, this book is sure to be required reading for its in-depth look at graphics and other leading-edge .NET features. It proves once again that learning low-level APIs in detail is still a good way to learn Windows programming. --Richard Dragan

Topics covered: Overview of C# and .NET Windows programming fundamentals; a "Hello World" console application; C# language and object basics; a simple Windows Forms application (creating a main window and handling the paint events); basic .NET structures (including rectangles, points, and colors); text output and scrolling; exploring .NET system information; in-depth tutorial for GDI+ programming: pens, lines, rectangles, and polygons; keyboard processing (plus a custom class for caret processing); graphics transformations (including scaling, linear transforms with matrices); mouse processing (plus processing the mouse wheel); text and fonts (TrueType and OpenType fonts, antialiasing, measuring text); using timers; date and time APIs; a sample code for clocks; drawing and transforming images (displaying JPG and BMP files); simple animation; basic control programming (buttons, labels, scroll bars, and track bars); exploring Bezier curves and splines; menus (basic and custom); graphics paths and regions; clipping techniques; basic dialog box programming (modal and modeless forms); edit, list, and spin controls; font transforms and special effects, using toolbars and status bars, printing techniques (including print dialogs), splitter, TreeView, and ListView controls; programming with the clipboard, drag-and-drop support, reference sections on APIs for programming with files and streams, math functions, and strings.

About the Author

Charles Petzold has been writing about programming for Windows-based operating systems for 24 years. A Microsoft MVP for Client Application Development and a Windows Pioneer Award winner, Petzold is author of the classic Programming Windows, currently in its fifth edition and one of the best-known programming books of all time; the widely acclaimed Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software; and more than a dozen other books.


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Product Details

  • Series: Developer Reference
  • Paperback: 1328 pages
  • Publisher: Microsoft Press (January 18, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0735613702
  • ISBN-13: 978-0735613706
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 2.4 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,469,898 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Ming Chen on January 11, 2002
Format: Paperback
This book is for neither .NET/C# programming language nor Windows Operating System. It focuses on Windows GUI programming.
It only spends about 40 pages on C# language basics, and also, it never mentions COM/COM+, which are very important features for Windows platform.
This is the best reference book for windows forms and .Net GDI+ programming. It spends 1200+ pages to introduce all those Graphic and UI stuff in a C# way. If you are a UI programmer, this book is nothing but a must buy! It includes everything you need to know about .NET/C# GUI programming.
But, if what you are looking for is some C# language reference, please refer to C# Primer: A Practical Approach by Stanley B. Lippman or Progamming C#. If what you want is a detail look into .NET platform/CLR, refer to Compiling for the .NET Common Language Runtime.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of the most carefully constructed books on programming that I've ever read. The book builds a doggedly focused exposition of .NET Windows Forms from the ground up, and within that subject, there is very little missing here. Further, any diversions are relegated to three superbly organized appendices on Files and Streams, math functions, and string handling, three areas which rich client windows programmers have to have good mastery of anyhow. When I say that Petzold builds his subject from the ground up, I mean that the book can and should be read like "War and Peace, " from beginning to end without skipping anything. Even if you think you understand the basics, I'd be very surprised if you didn't gain important insights you might have missed before, even from the early and elementary chapters. Virtually nothing is presupposed and your knowledge is build up, block by block. After studying this book, you will understand exactly what is happening in a .NET Windows Forms application. Other books take a shotgun approach, throwing stuff at you that may work, but without providing the background to understand what is happening beneath the sheets. Petzold does not let Visual C# generate code automatically. Visual Studio provides a lot of visual tools and wizards for quickly designing dialog box layouts and generating code frameworks, but Petzold wants you to understand what is really going on, so everything is hand-coded in this book. This can either be a warning to you, or an invitation to those who want a deep understanding of how a Windows Form is really put together.Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
Programming Microsoft Windows with C#: A Core Reference
As expected, book is an excellent work but title is misleading. I've read the entire book and this is what I found:
1. Excellent book for beginners to write Windows programming with simple Windows controls including brushes, pens, text and fonts, keyboard and mouse events, times, scroll bars, menus, dialog boxes, toolbars and status bars, tree view, list view and printing.
2. Book is well written in a tutorail way, easy to understand.
3. Not much for an advanced developer. If you're looking for some advanced stuff, you may be disappointed.
Overall a must have for .NET beginners and intermediate developers.
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By A Customer on July 20, 2002
Format: Paperback
Sometimes you win, sometimes you loose.
I bought Petzold, "Programming Windows with C#" and Pappas & Murray, "C# for Windows Programming" at roughly the same time. Petzold's book is long and thorough. It took me about 6 days of working through the book, but when I was done (in April), I had what I needed to write a small (~10000 lines, 1/2 of it GUI code out of the Visual Studio .NET GUI editor) commercial application that just hit the shelves two weeks ago (in July). In addition to a thorough introduction to Windows Forms programming, the book introduced readers to a variety of other .NET framework classes that I actually ended up using. Information was accurate (with a few exceptions due to changes between the betas and the final .NET code) and well organized. Petzold was careful to warn readers about techniques that might look appealing but would cause trouble later, and explained why they might cause trouble.
So now that I can breath again, I thought I'd work through the Pappas & Murray book. What a joke. These guys must have been working under an unrealistic deadline, because I've never seen a book padded with so much fluff and so little usable content. At least two of the examples won't work as published, the descriptions of the event handlers are 23 pages of repetitive cut and paste that could have been cut down to 5 pages with a little thought, enumeration values for three or four MessageBox parameters were munged together in one table so that you couldn't tell which values to use with which parameters, and so on and so on. Code was sloppy - techniques they used that worked for their small examples would be dangerous if used generally in larger programs. This book is worse than just "beginner", it will lead beginners wrong.
I won with Petzold's book, and lost with Pappas & Murry's. Fortunately I read Petzold's when it counted.
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