SystemEvents SystemEvents SystemEvents SystemEvents Class

Definition

Provides access to system event notifications. This class cannot be inherited.

public ref class SystemEvents sealed
public sealed class SystemEvents
type SystemEvents = class
Public NotInheritable Class SystemEvents
Inheritance
SystemEventsSystemEventsSystemEventsSystemEvents

Examples

This section contains two examples. The first example shows how to use system events in an ordinary application, and the second example shows how to use system events in a Windows service.

Example 1

The following code example registers interest in some system events and then waits for any of those events to occur. The output shown occurs if the user changes the display resolution.

#using <System.dll>

using namespace System;
using namespace Microsoft::Win32;

// This method is called when a user preference changes.
void SystemEvents_UserPreferenceChanging(Object^ sender,
     UserPreferenceChangingEventArgs^ e)
 {
     Console::WriteLine("The user preference is changing. Category={0}",
         e->Category);
 }

// This method is called when the palette changes.
void SystemEvents_PaletteChanged(Object^ sender, EventArgs^ e)
{
    Console::WriteLine("The palette changed.");
}

// This method is called when the display settings change.
void SystemEvents_DisplaySettingsChanged(Object^ sender,
    EventArgs^ e)
{
    Console::WriteLine("The display settings changed.");
}

int main()
{
    // Set the SystemEvents class to receive event notification
    // when a user preference changes, the palette changes, or
    // when display settings change.
    SystemEvents::UserPreferenceChanging += gcnew
        UserPreferenceChangingEventHandler(
        SystemEvents_UserPreferenceChanging);
    SystemEvents::PaletteChanged += gcnew
        EventHandler(SystemEvents_PaletteChanged);
    SystemEvents::DisplaySettingsChanged += gcnew
        EventHandler(SystemEvents_DisplaySettingsChanged);

    // For demonstration purposes, this application sits idle
    // waiting for events.
    Console::WriteLine("This application is waiting for system events.");
    Console::WriteLine("Press <Enter> to terminate this application.");
    Console::ReadLine();
}

// This code produces the following output.
//
//  This app is waiting for system events.
//  Press <Enter> to terminate this application.
//  Display Settings changed.
//  User preference is changing. Category=General
using System;
using Microsoft.Win32;

public sealed class App 
{
    static void Main() 
    {         
        // Set the SystemEvents class to receive event notification when a user 
        // preference changes, the palette changes, or when display settings change.
        SystemEvents.UserPreferenceChanging += new 
            UserPreferenceChangingEventHandler(SystemEvents_UserPreferenceChanging);
        SystemEvents.PaletteChanged += new 
            EventHandler(SystemEvents_PaletteChanged);
        SystemEvents.DisplaySettingsChanged += new 
            EventHandler(SystemEvents_DisplaySettingsChanged);        

        // For demonstration purposes, this application sits idle waiting for events.
        Console.WriteLine("This application is waiting for system events.");
        Console.WriteLine("Press <Enter> to terminate this application.");
        Console.ReadLine();
    }

    // This method is called when a user preference changes.
    static void SystemEvents_UserPreferenceChanging(object sender, UserPreferenceChangingEventArgs e) 
    {
        Console.WriteLine("The user preference is changing. Category={0}", e.Category);
    }

    // This method is called when the palette changes.
    static void SystemEvents_PaletteChanged(object sender, EventArgs e)
    {
        Console.WriteLine("The palette changed.");
    }

    // This method is called when the display settings change.
    static void SystemEvents_DisplaySettingsChanged(object sender, EventArgs e)
    {
        Console.WriteLine("The display settings changed.");
    }
}

// This code produces the following output.
// 
//  This app is waiting for system events.
//  Press <Enter> to terminate this application.
//  Display Settings changed.
//  User preference is changing. Category=General
Imports System
Imports Microsoft.Win32
Imports System.Windows.Forms

Friend Class Form1
    Inherits System.Windows.Forms.Form


    Public Sub New()
        MyBase.New()

        'This call is required by the Windows Form Designer.
        InitializeComponent()

        'Set the SystemEvents class to receive event notification 
        'when a user preference changes, the palette changes, or 
        'when display settings change.
        AddHandler SystemEvents.UserPreferenceChanging, _
        AddressOf SystemEvents_UserPreferenceChanging

        AddHandler SystemEvents.PaletteChanged, _
        AddressOf SystemEvents_PaletteChanged

        AddHandler SystemEvents.DisplaySettingsChanged, _
        AddressOf SystemEvents_DisplaySettingsChanged

    End Sub

    'Form overrides dispose to clean up the component list.
    Protected Overloads Overrides Sub Dispose(ByVal disposing As Boolean)
        If disposing Then
            If (components IsNot Nothing) Then
                components.Dispose()
            End If
        End If
        MyBase.Dispose(disposing)
    End Sub


    Private components As System.ComponentModel.IContainer

    <System.Diagnostics.DebuggerStepThrough()> Private Sub InitializeComponent()

        Me.SuspendLayout()

        '
        'Form1
        '
        Me.ClientSize = New System.Drawing.Size(648, 398)
        Me.Name = "Form1"
        Me.Text = "Form1"
        Me.ResumeLayout(False)

    End Sub


    ' This method is called when a user preference changes.
    Private Sub SystemEvents_UserPreferenceChanging( _
    ByVal sender As Object, _
    ByVal e As UserPreferenceChangingEventArgs)

        MessageBox.Show("UserPreferenceChanging: " & _
        e.Category.ToString())
    End Sub


    ' This method is called when the palette changes.
    Private Sub SystemEvents_PaletteChanged( _
    ByVal sender As Object, _
    ByVal e As EventArgs)

        MessageBox.Show("PaletteChanged")

    End Sub


    ' This method is called when the display settings change.
    Private Sub SystemEvents_DisplaySettingsChanged( _
    ByVal sender As Object, _
    ByVal e As EventArgs)

        MessageBox.Show("The display settings changed.")

    End Sub

End Class

Example 2

The following code example demonstrates a very simple Windows service that handles the TimeChanged and UserPreferenceChanged events. The example includes a service named SimpleService, a form named HiddenForm, and an installer. The form provides the message loop that is required by system events.

Note

Services do not have message loops, unless they are allowed to interact with the desktop. If the message loop is not provided by a hidden form, as in this example, the service must be run under the local system account, and manual intervention is required to enable interaction with the desktop. That is, the administrator must manually check the Allow service to interact with desktop check box on the Log On tab of the service properties dialog box. In that case, a message loop is automatically provided. This option is available only when the service is run under the local system account. Interaction with the desktop cannot be enabled programmatically.

The service in this example starts a thread that runs an instance of HiddenForm. The events are hooked up and handled in the form. The events must be hooked up in the load event of the form, to make sure that the form is completely loaded first; otherwise the events will not be raised.

Note

The example provides all the necessary code, including the form initialization code typically generated by Visual Studio designers. If you are developing your service in Visual Studio, you can omit the second partial class and use the Properties window to set the height and width of the hidden form to zero, the border style to FormBorderStyle.None, and the window state to FormWindowState.Minimized.

To run the example:

  1. Compile the code from the command line. The name that you use for the source file is not important.

  2. Install the service from the command line using the Installutil.exe (Installer Tool) utility. For example, InstallUtil example.exe if the source file name is example.cs or example.vb. You must be an administrator to install the service.

  3. Use the Services console to start the service.

  4. Change the system time, or change user preferences, such as mouse properties.

  5. View the messages in the Application category of Event Viewer.

  6. Use the Services console to stop the service.

  7. Uninstall the service from the command line by using the /u option. For example, InstallUtil /u example.exe.

using System;
using System.ServiceProcess;
using System.Threading;
using System.Windows.Forms;
using System.Diagnostics;
using Microsoft.Win32;
using System.ComponentModel;
using System.Configuration.Install;

namespace SimpleServiceCs
{
    public class SimpleService : ServiceBase
    {
        static void Main(string[] args)
        {
            ServiceBase.Run(new SimpleService());
        }

        protected override void OnStart(string[] args)
        {
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService", "Starting SimpleService");
            new Thread(RunMessagePump).Start();
        }

        void RunMessagePump()
        {
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService.MessagePump", "Starting SimpleService Message Pump");
            Application.Run(new HiddenForm());
        }

        protected override void OnStop()
        {
            Application.Exit();
        }
    }

    public partial class HiddenForm : Form
    {
        public HiddenForm()
        {
            InitializeComponent();
        }

        private void HiddenForm_Load(object sender, EventArgs e)
        {
            SystemEvents.TimeChanged += new EventHandler(SystemEvents_TimeChanged);
            SystemEvents.UserPreferenceChanged += new UserPreferenceChangedEventHandler(SystemEvents_UPCChanged);
        }

        private void HiddenForm_FormClosing(object sender, FormClosingEventArgs e)
        {
            SystemEvents.TimeChanged -= new EventHandler(SystemEvents_TimeChanged);
            SystemEvents.UserPreferenceChanged -= new UserPreferenceChangedEventHandler(SystemEvents_UPCChanged);
        }

        private void SystemEvents_TimeChanged(object sender, EventArgs e)
        {
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService.TimeChanged", "Time changed; it is now " +
                DateTime.Now.ToLongTimeString());
        }

        private void SystemEvents_UPCChanged(object sender, UserPreferenceChangedEventArgs e)
        {
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService.UserPreferenceChanged", e.Category.ToString());
        }
    }

    partial class HiddenForm
    {
        private System.ComponentModel.IContainer components = null;

        protected override void Dispose(bool disposing)
        {
            if (disposing && (components != null))
            {
                components.Dispose();
            }
            base.Dispose(disposing);
        }

        private void InitializeComponent()
        {
            this.SuspendLayout();
            this.AutoScaleDimensions = new System.Drawing.SizeF(6F, 13F);
            this.AutoScaleMode = System.Windows.Forms.AutoScaleMode.Font;
            this.ClientSize = new System.Drawing.Size(0, 0);
            this.FormBorderStyle = System.Windows.Forms.FormBorderStyle.None;
            this.Name = "HiddenForm";
            this.Text = "HiddenForm";
            this.WindowState = System.Windows.Forms.FormWindowState.Minimized;
            this.Load += new System.EventHandler(this.HiddenForm_Load);
            this.FormClosing += new System.Windows.Forms.FormClosingEventHandler(this.HiddenForm_FormClosing);
            this.ResumeLayout(false);

        }
    }

    [RunInstaller(true)]
    public class SimpleInstaller : Installer
    {
        private ServiceInstaller serviceInstaller;
        private ServiceProcessInstaller processInstaller;

        public SimpleInstaller()
        {
            processInstaller = new ServiceProcessInstaller();
            serviceInstaller = new ServiceInstaller();

            // Service will run under system account
            processInstaller.Account = ServiceAccount.LocalSystem;

            // Service will have Start Type of Manual
            serviceInstaller.StartType = ServiceStartMode.Automatic;

            serviceInstaller.ServiceName = "Simple Service";

            Installers.Add(serviceInstaller);
            Installers.Add(processInstaller);
        }
    }
}
Imports System
Imports System.ServiceProcess
Imports System.Threading
Imports System.Windows.Forms
Imports System.Diagnostics
Imports Microsoft.Win32
Imports System.ComponentModel
Imports System.Configuration.Install

Namespace SimpleServiceVb
    Public Class SimpleService
        Inherits ServiceBase
    
        Shared Sub Main(ByVal args() As String) 
            ServiceBase.Run(New SimpleService())
        End Sub
    
        Protected Overrides Sub OnStart(ByVal args() As String) 
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService", "Starting SimpleService")
            Dim t As New Thread(AddressOf RunMessagePump)
            t.Start()    
        End Sub
    
        Sub RunMessagePump() 
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService.MessagePump", _
                "Starting SimpleService Message Pump")
            Application.Run(New HiddenForm())
        End Sub
    
        Protected Overrides Sub OnStop() 
            Application.Exit()
        End Sub
    End Class 

    Partial Class HiddenForm
        Inherits Form

        Public Sub New() 
            InitializeComponent()
        End Sub
    
        Private Sub HiddenForm_Load(ByVal sender As Object, ByVal e As EventArgs) 
            AddHandler SystemEvents.TimeChanged, AddressOf SystemEvents_TimeChanged
            AddHandler SystemEvents.UserPreferenceChanged, AddressOf SystemEvents_UPCChanged
        End Sub 
    
        Private Sub HiddenForm_FormClosing(ByVal sender As Object, ByVal e As FormClosingEventArgs) 
            RemoveHandler SystemEvents.TimeChanged, New EventHandler(AddressOf SystemEvents_TimeChanged)
            RemoveHandler SystemEvents.UserPreferenceChanged, _
                New UserPreferenceChangedEventHandler(AddressOf SystemEvents_UPCChanged)
        End Sub 
    
        Private Sub SystemEvents_TimeChanged(ByVal sender As Object, ByVal e As EventArgs) 
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService.TimeChanged", _
                "Time changed; it is now " & DateTime.Now.ToLongTimeString())
        End Sub 
    
        Private Sub SystemEvents_UPCChanged(ByVal sender As Object, ByVal e As UserPreferenceChangedEventArgs) 
            EventLog.WriteEntry("SimpleService.UserPreferenceChanged", e.Category.ToString())
        End Sub 
    End Class

    Partial Class HiddenForm

        Private components As System.ComponentModel.IContainer = Nothing
    
        Protected Overrides Sub Dispose(ByVal disposing As Boolean) 
            If disposing AndAlso Not (components Is Nothing) Then
                components.Dispose()
            End If
            MyBase.Dispose(disposing)
        End Sub
  
        Private Sub InitializeComponent() 
            Me.SuspendLayout()
            Me.AutoScaleDimensions = New System.Drawing.SizeF(6F, 13F)
            Me.AutoScaleMode = System.Windows.Forms.AutoScaleMode.Font
            Me.ClientSize = New System.Drawing.Size(0, 0)
            Me.FormBorderStyle = System.Windows.Forms.FormBorderStyle.None
            Me.Name = "HiddenForm"
            Me.Text = "HiddenForm"
            Me.WindowState = System.Windows.Forms.FormWindowState.Minimized
            AddHandler Me.Load, AddressOf Me.HiddenForm_Load
            AddHandler Me.FormClosing, AddressOf Me.HiddenForm_FormClosing
            Me.ResumeLayout(False)
        End Sub 
    End Class 

    <RunInstaller(True)> _
    Public Class SimpleInstaller
        Inherits Installer

        Private serviceInstaller As ServiceInstaller
        Private processInstaller As ServiceProcessInstaller
    
        Public Sub New() 
            processInstaller = New ServiceProcessInstaller()
            serviceInstaller = New ServiceInstaller()
        
            ' Service will run under system account
            processInstaller.Account = ServiceAccount.LocalSystem
        
            ' Service will have Start Type of Manual
            serviceInstaller.StartType = ServiceStartMode.Automatic
        
            serviceInstaller.ServiceName = "Simple Service"
        
            Installers.Add(serviceInstaller)
            Installers.Add(processInstaller)
        End Sub
    End Class 
End Namespace

Remarks

The SystemEvents class provides the ability to respond to specific types of system events.

When a system event is raised, any delegates attached to the event are called using the thread that monitors for system events. Therefore, you should make any calls from your event handlers thread-safe. If you need to call a system event that is not exposed as a member of this class, you can use the InvokeOnEventsThread method.

Caution

Do not perform time-consuming processing on the thread that raises a system event handler because it might prevent other applications from functioning.

Note

Some system events might not be raised on Windows Vista. Be sure to verify that your application works as expected on Windows Vista.

Methods

CreateTimer(Int32) CreateTimer(Int32) CreateTimer(Int32) CreateTimer(Int32)

Creates a new window timer associated with the system events window.

Equals(Object) Equals(Object) Equals(Object) Equals(Object)

Determines whether the specified object is equal to the current object.

(Inherited from Object)
GetHashCode() GetHashCode() GetHashCode() GetHashCode()

Serves as the default hash function.

(Inherited from Object)
GetType() GetType() GetType() GetType()

Gets the Type of the current instance.

(Inherited from Object)
InvokeOnEventsThread(Delegate) InvokeOnEventsThread(Delegate) InvokeOnEventsThread(Delegate) InvokeOnEventsThread(Delegate)

Invokes the specified delegate using the thread that listens for system events.

KillTimer(IntPtr) KillTimer(IntPtr) KillTimer(IntPtr) KillTimer(IntPtr)

Terminates the timer specified by the given id.

MemberwiseClone() MemberwiseClone() MemberwiseClone() MemberwiseClone()

Creates a shallow copy of the current Object.

(Inherited from Object)
ToString() ToString() ToString() ToString()

Returns a string that represents the current object.

(Inherited from Object)

Events

DisplaySettingsChanged DisplaySettingsChanged DisplaySettingsChanged DisplaySettingsChanged

Occurs when the user changes the display settings.

DisplaySettingsChanging DisplaySettingsChanging DisplaySettingsChanging DisplaySettingsChanging

Occurs when the display settings are changing.

EventsThreadShutdown EventsThreadShutdown EventsThreadShutdown EventsThreadShutdown

Occurs before the thread that listens for system events is terminated.

InstalledFontsChanged InstalledFontsChanged InstalledFontsChanged InstalledFontsChanged

Occurs when the user adds fonts to or removes fonts from the system.

LowMemory LowMemory LowMemory LowMemory

Occurs when the system is running out of available RAM.

PaletteChanged PaletteChanged PaletteChanged PaletteChanged

Occurs when the user switches to an application that uses a different palette.

PowerModeChanged PowerModeChanged PowerModeChanged PowerModeChanged

Occurs when the user suspends or resumes the system.

SessionEnded SessionEnded SessionEnded SessionEnded

Occurs when the user is logging off or shutting down the system.

SessionEnding SessionEnding SessionEnding SessionEnding

Occurs when the user is trying to log off or shut down the system.

SessionSwitch SessionSwitch SessionSwitch SessionSwitch

Occurs when the currently logged-in user has changed.

TimeChanged TimeChanged TimeChanged TimeChanged

Occurs when the user changes the time on the system clock.

TimerElapsed TimerElapsed TimerElapsed TimerElapsed

Occurs when a windows timer interval has expired.

UserPreferenceChanged UserPreferenceChanged UserPreferenceChanged UserPreferenceChanged

Occurs when a user preference has changed.

UserPreferenceChanging UserPreferenceChanging UserPreferenceChanging UserPreferenceChanging

Occurs when a user preference is changing.

Security

NamedPermissionSet
for full access to system resources. Demand values: LinkDemand. Associated state:

Applies to

See also