Relationship Between a C++ Window Object and an HWND

The window object is an object of the C++ CWnd class (or a derived class) that your program creates directly. It comes and goes in response to your program's constructor and destructor calls. The Windows window, on the other hand, is an opaque handle to an internal Windows data structure that corresponds to a window and consumes system resources when present. A Windows window is identified by a "window handle" (HWND) and is created after the CWnd object is created by a call to the Create member function of class CWnd. The window may be destroyed either by a program call or by a user's action. The window handle is stored in the window object's m_hWnd member variable. The following figure shows the relationship between the C++ window object and the Windows window. Creating windows is discussed in Creating Windows. Destroying windows is discussed in Destroying Window Objects.

CWnd window object and resulting window
Window Object and Windows Window

See also

Window Objects