February 25, 2021
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Windows API Tutorial - Part One

  • By Karl Moore
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Hello and welcome to this groovy Windows API tutorial, hosted exclusively here on VB-World.net.

In this two part series, I'll be giving you enough ammo to start using and exploring that thing they call the Windows API. Yessiree, by this time next week you too could be an API guru!

I personally remember my first encounter with the Windows API. I was in a programming class and asked lecturer Mark Jones his thoughts on the curious acronym.

"The API?", laughed that huge mound of blubber. "Hah, you don't want to use that. There are already enough ways to crash your program without using the API!".

As his huge belly wobbled off a final chuckle, the first impressions of Windows API started to slowly set in my mind. Even though I wasn't entirely sure exactly what it was, I knew it was bad. It was evil. It held more crash potential than the F1 Grand Prix track on a snowy day.

A couple of years later, I stumbled across a problem that one book suggested I overcome using the Windows API. So I did. And it worked.

At last, my lifelong fear had vanished. And by the end of today, I hope you too will feel a lot more comfortable with this technology. In fact, I guarantee it*.

* The VB-World network cannot be held responsible for Karl's flatulent use of the word 'guarantee'. After all, readers of the last tutorial were never sent the promised three-year old Mars Bar. Please... please don't sue us. It's not our fault. Blame Karl. We're good people, really.

But enough blabber -- let's ask ourselves a fairly elementary question. What exactly is this API thing?

Note: This tutorial is designed for those using Visual Basic 5/6. The calls represented herein may not work with other versions

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This article was originally published on November 20, 2002

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