The Great Flying Tortoise

A hard-boiled look at Win32 C++ programming and the property system

Blog - About

About The Great Flying Tortoise

Ben Karas has been a developer working at Microsoft since 2003.  He hopes to write useful tidbits concerning the property system, Win32 C++ programming, and living in the Seattle area. 

I'll keep the rules simple:
 1. Use good judgement.
 2. See rule #1

All postings are provided "AS IS" with no warranties and confer no rights. Opinions expressed are those of the respective authors. More legal stuff here.

  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    Surprise! My success is your failure

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    Windows APIs often use HRESULT s. Almost every function returns an HRESULT and almost every caller is expected to check it. COM provides a few helpers for these tasks: SUCCEEDED () / FAILED () broadly check for success or for failure; HRESULT_FROM_WIN32...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    Why use IShellItem2::GetPropertyStore?

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    I often get this question: "How can I read properties directly from a property handler?" (Remember that the property handler is the file system namespace's extensibility point.) Usually, the person just wants to read one or more properties and doesn...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    Property System Layers and Extensibility Points

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    It's easy to get confused about what points of extensibility exist and what layer provide what services. This isn't helped by the fact that we've lumped a bunch of things into the property system, but I'll try to diagram this out here and in future posts...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    What is the Property System? - in normal language

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    In my first post , I described what the property system provides from an API perspective. But I used all these techno-wiggle-waggle-jibber-jabber that my friends couldn't follow. Ich. What feedback for a first post! So here it is minus the 133t-speak...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    Trying out the property system

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    You can, of course, wait for Windows Vista to ship before checking out the property system. But if you are curious or bored, here are a few other things you might do: Download the Windows Vista Platform SDK: The most recent Platform SDK . The SDK...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    What is a PROPERTYKEY?

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    So what's this PROPERTYKEY that the property system uses? Where do I get them? Well, property keys identify the particular property you are interested in. You can find a bunch of system-provided definitions in the Windows Vista Platform SDK in propkey...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    Property consumerism

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    Reading properties is rather simple. First, bind to the item. SHCreateItemFromIDList and SHCreateItemFromParsingName are appropriate for this. Then read your properties. Be sure to clean up after yourself. IShellItem2 *psi; if (SUCCEEDED(SHCreateItemFromParsingName...
  • The Great Flying Tortoise

    What is the property system?

    • 1 Comments
    The property system is a new set of APIs for Microsoft Windows Vista that provides a general way to access metadata about files and items accessible through the shell namespace. This means you can ask for the dimensions of an image, or the size of a file...
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