C++ Programming/Code/API/Win32/Wrappers

Win32 API Wrappers


Since the Win32 API is C based and also a moving target and since some alterations are done in each OS version some wrappers were created, in this section you will find some of the approaches available to facilitate the use of the API in a C++ setup and provide abstraction from the low level stuff with higher level implementations of common needed features, dealing with the GUI, complex controls even communications and database access.

Microsoft Foundation Classes (MFC);
a C++ library for developing Windows applications and UI components. Created by Microsoft for the C++ Windows programmer as an abstraction layer for the Win32 API, the use of the new STL enabled capabilities is scarce on the MFC. It's also compatible with Windows CE (the pocket PC version of the OS). MFC was designed to use the Document-View pattern a variant of the Model View Controller (MVC) pattern.
More info about MFC can be obtained on the Windows Programming Wikibook.
Windows Template Library (WTL);
a C++ library for developing Windows applications and UI components. It extends ATL (Active Template Library) and provides a set of classes for controls, dialogs, frame windows, GDI objects, and more. This library is not supported by Microsoft Services (but is used internally at MS and available for download at MSDN).
Win32 Foundation Classes (WFC);
(http://www.samblackburn.com/wfc/) a library of C++ classes that extend Microsoft Foundation Classes (MFC) to do NT specific things.
Borland Visual Component Library (VCL);
a Delphi/C++ library for developing Windows applications, UI components and different kinds of service applications. Created by Borland as an abstraction layer for the Win32 API, but also implementing many non-visual, and non windows-specific objects, like AnsiString class for example.

There are more generic wrapper that do not focus exclusively on the Windows API, like the Qt (framework) or WxWidgets these are covered on the Generic Wrappers Section of the book.