Tutorial :What's the proper way to minimize to tray a C# WinForms app?


What is the proper way to minimize a WinForms app to the system tray?

Note: minimize to system tray; on the right side of the taskbar by the clock. I'm not asking about minimizing to taskbar, which is what happens when you hit the "minus" button on the window.

I've seen hackish solutions like, "minimize, set ShowInTaskbar = false, then show your NotifyIcon."

Solutions like that are hackish because the app doesn't appear to minimize to the tray like other apps, the code has to detect when to set ShowInTaskbar = true, among other issues.

What's the proper way to do this?


There is actually no managed way to do that form of animation to the tray in native winforms, however you can P/Invoke shell32.dll to do it:

Some good info here (In the comments not the post):


And here it is in C++:


You can use that to figure out what stuff to Pinvoke for your C# version.


this.WindowState = FormWindowState.Minimized    

That is the built in way to do it and it looks fine to me most of the time. The only time is has some weirdness to it is if you call it on startup which has some weirdness sometimes which is why most people will also set the ShowInTaskbar = false and hide the form too.



It will helps:

public partial class Form1 : Form  {      public static bool Close = false;      Icon[] images;      int offset = 0;        public Form1()      {          InitializeComponent();            notifyIcon1.BalloonTipText = "My application still working...";          notifyIcon1.BalloonTipTitle = "My Sample Application";          notifyIcon1.BalloonTipIcon = ToolTipIcon.Info;       }        private void Form1_Resize(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          if (FormWindowState.Minimized == WindowState)          {              this.Hide();              notifyIcon1.ShowBalloonTip(500);              //WindowState = FormWindowState.Minimized;          }      }        private void notifyIcon1_MouseDoubleClick(object sender, MouseEventArgs e)      {          this.Show();          notifyIcon1.ShowBalloonTip(1000);          WindowState = FormWindowState.Normal;      }        private void maximizeToolStripMenuItem_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          this.Show();          WindowState = FormWindowState.Normal;      }        private void closeToolStripMenuItem_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          Close = true;          this.Close();        }        // Handle Closing of the Form.      protected override void OnClosing(CancelEventArgs e)      {          if (Close)          {              e.Cancel = false;          }          else          {              WindowState = FormWindowState.Minimized;              e.Cancel = true;          }      }        private void Form1_Load(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          // Load the basic set of eight icons.          images = new Icon[5];          images[0] = new Icon("C:\\icon1.ico");          images[1] = new Icon("C:\\icon2.ico");          images[2] = new Icon("C:\\icon3.ico");          images[3] = new Icon("C:\\icon4.ico");          images[4] = new Icon("C:\\icon5.ico");      }        private void timer1_Tick(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          // Change the icon.          // This event handler fires once every second (1000 ms).          if (offset < 5)          {              notifyIcon1.Icon = images[offset];              offset++;          }          else          {              offset = 0;          }      }  }  


This code is tested and supports many options.

More here: http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/TheNotifyIconExample


Update: Looks like I posted too soon. I was also using the below hack for a tool of mine. Waiting for the right solution for this..........

You can use Windows.Forms.NotifyIcon for this. http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/system.windows.forms.notifyicon.aspx

Add NotifyIcon to the form, set some properties and you are done.

        this.ShowIcon = false;//for the main form          this.ShowInTaskbar = false;//for the main form          this.notifyIcon1.Visible = true;//for notify icon          this.notifyIcon1.Icon = ((System.Drawing.Icon)(resources.GetObject("notifyIcon1.Icon")));//set an icon for notifyicon        private void Form1_Shown(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          this.Hide();      }  


Similar as above...

I have a resize event handler that is triggered whenever the window gets resized (Maximized, minimized, etc.)...

    public form1()      {         Initialize Component();           this.Resize += new EventHanlder(form1_Resize);      }           private void form1_Resize(object sender, EventArgs e)      {         if (this.WindowState == FormWindowState.Minimized && minimizeToTrayToolStripMenuItem.Checked == true)         {               NotificationIcon1.Visible = true;               NotificationIcon1.BalloonTipText = "Tool Tip Text"               NotificationIcon1.ShowBalloonTip(2);  //show balloon tip for 2 seconds               NotificationIcon1.Text = "Balloon Text that shows when minimized to tray for 2 seconds";               this.WindowState = FormWindowState.Minimized;               this.ShowInTaskbar = false;         }      }  

This allows the user to select whether or not they want to minimize to tray via a menubar. They can go to Windows -> and click on Minimize to Tray. If this is checked, and the window is being resized to Minimized, then it will minimize to the tray. Works flawlessly for me.


In the constructor of the Form:

this.Resize += new EventHandler(MainForm_Minimize);  

Then use this Event Handler method:

    private void MainForm_Minimize(object sender, EventArgs e)      {          if(this.WindowState == FormWindowState.Minimized)              Hide();      }  


If you are having problems getting this to work, check that you have

this.Resize += new System.EventHandler(this.Form1_Resize);  

in the fom1.designer.cs

Note:If u also have question or solution just comment us below or mail us on toontricks1994@gmail.com
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