Using the WinBGIm Graphics Library with Visual Studio 2005/2008

September 2009


This page provides a mechinism for using the WinBGIm Graphics Library from Visual Studio 2005/2008. Additional documentation for the WinBGIm graphics library is available at

Installation Notes:

In order to use the WinBGIm graphics library, you need to download the following file onto your machine (preferably to the desktop, where you can easily access it):

For Visual Studio 2005:
For Visual Studio 2008:
For Visual Studio 2010:

After downloading, please right-click the file and select "Extract Here" to unpack the files.  The newly created directory, called BGI, includes all the files we'll need (including the WinBGIm Libraries and a pre-set project already set up to use them) in order to create a graphics program in Visual Studio. You should now change the name of this directory to a name for your own project, such as First-Sample.

Note: If you're using the Visual Studio Express Edition, you will need to install a number of other libraries before you can use any of the BGI functions.  In order to do this, go to and install the Microsoft "Platform SDK" (Software Development Kit).  This kit includes a number of libraries allowing you to use Windows features that aren't automatically included in the C++ language.  Once you have the SDK installed, the WinBGIm Library should work on your machine.

To write a program that uses the graphics library, open Visual Studio and select "File => Open => Project/Solution", and open the "winbgi-solution" file from the directory that you created for your project. You may add other files to this project (right click in the Solution Explorer window and choose Add), such as this main program that opens a graphics window and draws a small circle. Notice that the graphics.h file is surrounded by quotation marks in the include directive:

#include "graphics.h"

int main( )
    initwindow(400, 300, "First Sample");
    circle(100, 50, 40);
    while (!kbhit( ))
    return 0;

Whenever you write a WinBGIm program, you'll have to extract the starting files from, then rename the extracted folder to a name for your new project. Then you're ready to start adding the main program and other files.

Michael Main (