Creating the Windows service C program example using Win32 library


// For WinXp as a target

#define _WIN32_WINNT 0x0501

#include <windows.h>

#include <stdio.h>


int main(void)


SC_HANDLE schSCManager, schService;


// The service executable location, just dummy here else make sure the executable is there :o)...

// Well as a real example, we are going to create our own telnet service.

// The executable for telnet is: C:\WINDOWS\system32\tlntsvr.exe

LPCTSTR lpszBinaryPathName = L"%SystemRoot%\\system32\\tlntsvr.exe";

// Service display name...

LPCTSTR lpszDisplayName = L"MyOwnTelnetService";

// Registry Subkey

LPCTSTR lpszServiceName = L"MyTelnetSrv";


// Open a handle to the SC Manager database...

schSCManager = OpenSCManager(

NULL, // local machine

NULL, // SERVICES_ACTIVE_DATABASE database is opened by default

SC_MANAGER_ALL_ACCESS); // full access rights


if (NULL == schSCManager)

printf("OpenSCManager() failed, error: %d.\n", GetLastError());


printf("OpenSCManager() looks OK.\n");


// Create/install service...

// If the function succeeds, the return value is a handle to the service. If the function fails, the return value is NULL.

schService = CreateService(

schSCManager, // SCManager database

lpszServiceName, // name of service

lpszDisplayName, // service name to display

SERVICE_ALL_ACCESS, // desired access

SERVICE_WIN32_OWN_PROCESS, // service type


SERVICE_ERROR_NORMAL, // error control type

lpszBinaryPathName, // service's binary

NULL, // no load ordering group

NULL, // no tag identifier

NULL, // no dependencies, for real telnet there are dependencies lor

NULL, // LocalSystem account

NULL); // no password


if (schService == NULL)


printf("CreateService() failed, error: %ld\n", GetLastError());

return FALSE;




printf("CreateService() for %S looks OK.\n", lpszServiceName);

if (CloseServiceHandle(schService) == 0)

printf("CloseServiceHandle() failed, Error: %d.\n", GetLastError());


printf("CloseServiceHandle() is OK.\n");

return 0;




Output example:


OpenSCManager() looks OK.

CreateService() for MyTelnetSrv looks OK.

CloseServiceHandle() is OK.

Press any key to continue . . .

Well, verify the created service. Click Start->Programs->Administrative Tools->Services->Try finding "MyOwnTelnetService" service. It should be there...Select and right click->Click the Properties context menu. It is real service lor!!! This example will be used for the next several examples.



Compiler: Visual C++ Express Edition 2005

Compiled on Platform: Windows XP Pro SP2

Target platform: none, just for learning and fun

Header file: Standard and Windows

Additional library: Windows Platform SDK

Additional project setting: Set project to be compiled as C. Click Project menu->your_project_name Properties->Configuration Properties->C/C++->Advanced->Compiled As: Compiled as C Code (/TC)

Other info: non-CLR or unmanaged. Need to add Advapi32.lib (Advapi32.dll) to the project. Click the Project menu->Select the your_project_name Properties... sub menu->Expand the Configuration Properties folder on the left pane->Expand the Linker subfolder->Select the Input subfolder->Select the Additional Dependencies field on the right pane->Click the ... at the end of the field->Type in 'Advapi32.lib' in the empty pane->Click the OK button->Click the OK button second time to close the project Properties dialog.

To do: Creating a Windows service

To show: The Windows process and service programming using Win32 library



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