A version of this page is also available for

Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3


This function establishes the cursor shape.


HCURSOR SetCursor(
  HCURSOR hCursor


  • hCursor
    [in] Handle to the cursor. The cursor must have been created by the CreateCursor or loaded by the LoadCursor or LoadImage function. If this parameter is NULL, the cursor is removed from the screen.

    The width and height of the cursor must be the values returned by the GetSystemMetrics function for SM_CXCURSOR and SM_CYCURSOR.

Return Value

The handle to the previous cursor indicates success. NULL indicates that there was no previous cursor.


Use Cursor.lib when targeting a platform that does not support mouse cursors. The only cursor this component library supports is the wait cursor. Use the following code to set the wait cursor.

SetCursor(LoadCursor(NULL, IDC_WAIT));

Use Mcursor.lib when targeting a platform that does support mouse cursors. This library does not support color cursors.

If SetCursor is called after CreateCursor creates a zero dimension cursor, it still shows the old cursor, not the new cursor.

The cursor is set only if the new cursor is different from the previous cursor; otherwise, the function returns immediately.

The cursor is a shared resource. A window should set the cursor shape only when the cursor is in its client area or when the window is capturing mouse input. In systems without a mouse, the window should restore the previous cursor before the cursor leaves the client area or before it relinquishes control to another window.

If your application must set the cursor while it is in a window, make sure the class cursor for the specified window's class is set to NULL. If the class cursor is not NULL, the system restores the class cursor each time the mouse is moved.

The cursor is not shown on the screen if the internal cursor display count is less than zero. This occurs if the application uses the ShowCursor function to hide the cursor more times than to show the cursor.


Header winuser.h
Library Cursor.lib, Mcursor.lib
Windows Embedded CE Windows CE 1.0 and later
Windows Mobile Windows Mobile Version 5.0 and later

See Also