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Recommendations for Choosing Between ATL and MFC

When developing components and applications, you can choose between two approaches — ATL and MFC (the Microsoft Foundation Class Library).

Using ATL

ATL is a fast, easy way to both create a COM component in C++ and maintain a small footprint. Use ATL to create a control if you don't need all of the built-in functionality that MFC automatically provides.

Using MFC

MFC allows you to create full applications, ActiveX controls, and active documents. If you have already created a control with MFC, you may want to continue development in MFC. When creating a new control, consider using ATL if you don't need all of MFC's built-in functionality.

Using ATL in an MFC Project

You can add support for using ATL in an existing MFC project by running a wizard. For details, see Adding ATL Support to Your MFC Project.

See also

Introduction to ATL