It may be useful to manipulate a window associated with a console
application. The Win32 API provides no direct method for obtaining the
window handle associated with a console application. However, you can
obtain the window handle by calling FindWindow(). This function retrieves a
window handle based on a class name or window name.
Call GetConsoleTitle() to determine the current console title. Then supply
the current console title to FindWindow().
Because multiple windows may have the same title, you should change the
current console window title to a unique title. This will help prevent the
wrong window handle from being returned. Use SetConsoleTitle() to change
the current console window title. Here is the process:
- Call GetConsoleTitle() to save the current console window title.
- Call SetConsoleTitle() to change the console title to a unique title.
- Call Sleep(40) to ensure the window title was updated.
- Call FindWindow(NULL, uniquetitle), to obtain the HWND
this call returns the HWND -- or NULL if the operation failed.
- Call SetConsoleTitle() with the value retrieved from step 1, to
restore the original window title.
You should test the resulting HWND. For example, you can test to see if the
returned HWND corresponds with the current process by calling
GetWindowText() on the HWND and comparing the result with
The resulting HWND is not guaranteed to be suitable for all window handle
The following function retrieves the current console application window
handle (HWND). If the function succeeds, the return value is the handle of
the console window. If the function fails, the return value is NULL. Some
error checking is omitted, for brevity.
#define MY_BUFSIZE 1024 // Buffer size for console window titles.
HWND hwndFound; // This is what is returned to the caller.
char pszNewWindowTitle[MY_BUFSIZE]; // Contains fabricated
char pszOldWindowTitle[MY_BUFSIZE]; // Contains original
// Fetch current window title.
// Format a "unique" NewWindowTitle.
// Change current window title.
// Ensure window title has been updated.
// Look for NewWindowTitle.
// Restore original window title.
Article ID: 124103 - Last Review: July 11, 2005 - Revision: 1.3
- Microsoft Platform Software Development Kit-January 2000 Edition