- Series: Developer Reference
- Hardcover: 1100 pages
- Publisher: Microsoft Press; 5th edition (December 2, 1998)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 157231995X
- ISBN-13: 978-1572319950
- Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 2.8 x 9.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.3 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 121 customer reviews
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#433,582 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #84 in Books > Computers & Technology > Networking & Cloud Computing > Data in the Enterprise > Client-Server Systems
- #168 in Books > Computers & Technology > Programming > Microsoft Programming > C & C++ Windows Programming
- #219 in Books > Computers & Technology > Operating Systems > Windows > Windows Desktop
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Programming Windows®, Fifth Edition (Developer Reference) 5th Edition
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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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When I examined how these things are done in other platforms, I was surprised to find that they are sometimes done the same way. If you are using something like .NET, Windows Runtime, or Java Swing, you might not ever encounter these things. However, if your software is defined in a native implementation language, perhaps for the purposes of incorporating DirectX or OpenGL at a native level, you might see such things more often. A book like this make a huge difference in successfully grasping the concepts you need to apply in order to better use such things.
This book explains Windows application programming using simple C programming (and it's still working for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 Desktop app using free Visual Studio Express 2013. I heard you could still use it for Metro programming as well). The code examples are built up gradually from simple to difficult. The explanation is brief but to the point (I can always get the exact details from MSDN). It's enjoyable book to read (specially who likes to read source code, rather than long detail explanation on how each API works). Jargon free, plain English book, perfect for beginners after passing their C programming =)
In term of comparison, I couldn't even find other book that explains WIN32 from the bottom layer. Most books focus in middle layer functionality (.NET, XAML, etc).
As always it's important to know what a book is NOT. This book is not a tutorial for writing windows applications, nor does it discuss MFC or most of the common methods used today for rapidly producing computer programs. This is not REALLY a reference book on win32 either.
Instead it provides a tutorial-style documentation for the monstrous win32 API at its most fundamental levels. This book sets the standard for all other code written for any modern version of windows. It addresses real world issues and real world solutions to those problems (such as the chapter dedicated to making unicode friendly programs), as well as some historical issues (the difference between wParam and lParam).
No manual is without its flaws. This book is a bit too braod spectrum in the detail levels. There are places in the book where he will delve into details that you could care less about, and there are points that he will put in two or three sentences and assume you understand, although you may not.
Despite this, this book is essential to everyone writing code for Microsoft Windows (ANY version). You needn't read it cover to cover, but readiny section I (about 1/3 of the book) is essential. My one wish is that this book came in three volumes, if you haul it between home and school/office it gets to be buronsome. That's about all I can really complain about with this book.
If you want to make a simple Windows app, or port a basic app from Linux or Mac to Windows, this book is a key component to doing it quickly, with a minimum of fuss. If you want to make a Windows app using Dev C++ or another open source development kit for Windows, this book is a must have!