Task Tray Applet Framework

 Download Source Code and Example

To put an icon in the task tray all an application has to do is call Shell_NotifyIcon() to supply the icon, tool tip, callback message and a window to send it to. Making an application that's just a task tray applet is just a case of creating a hidden window, calling Shell_NotifyIcon() and processing the messages. The messages are your standard mouse click type messages. It's not that difficult but it takes a bit of time.

Creating a hidden window with a WndProc that responds to Task Tray applet messages correctly and does all the right things can be cumbersome if all you want to do is pop up a dialog box app from the task tray. The framework lets you derive from an base class that handles all of that stuff for you. All you need to do is override a few virtual functions and you have a dialog popping up! CJBTaskTrayApplet also gives you multiple applets in one exe (with multiple separate icons in the task tray) and automatic right button menu handling.

To implement your task tray applet you need to do the following:

  • include "TaskBarApplet.hpp" and "TaskBarAppletMain.hpp" the later gives you a WinMain() implementation.
  • publicly derive a class from CJBTaskTrayApplet.
  • implement the pure virtual functions GetTrayTip() and GetIcon() to supply the basic require by the framework.
  • handle OnLeftDoubleClick() to do something when a user double clicks on you. This is where you would generally show a dialog or something.
  • create an instance of your applet at global scope.
  • link with TaskBarApplet.cpp.

So that this article and code can be kept up to date more easily I've provided a link to where the article is located on my own web pages. Read the full article and download the source code.

Last updated: 3 July 1998