GetCurrentProcess function (processthreadsapi.h)

Retrieves a pseudo handle for the current process.


HANDLE GetCurrentProcess();

Return value

The return value is a pseudo handle to the current process.


A pseudo handle is a special constant, currently (HANDLE)-1, that is interpreted as the current process handle. For compatibility with future operating systems, it is best to call GetCurrentProcess instead of hard-coding this constant value. The calling process can use a pseudo handle to specify its own process whenever a process handle is required. Pseudo handles are not inherited by child processes.

This handle has the PROCESS_ALL_ACCESS access right to the process object. For more information, see Process Security and Access Rights.

Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP: This handle has the maximum access allowed by the security descriptor of the process to the primary token of the process.

A process can create a "real" handle to itself that is valid in the context of other processes, or that can be inherited by other processes, by specifying the pseudo handle as the source handle in a call to the DuplicateHandle function. A process can also use the OpenProcess function to open a real handle to itself.

The pseudo handle need not be closed when it is no longer needed. Calling the CloseHandle function with a pseudo handle has no effect. If the pseudo handle is duplicated by DuplicateHandle, the duplicate handle must be closed.


For an example, see Creating a Child Process with Redirected Input and Output.


Requirement Value
Minimum supported client Windows XP [desktop apps | UWP apps]
Minimum supported server Windows Server 2003 [desktop apps | UWP apps]
Target Platform Windows
Header processthreadsapi.h (include Windows.h on Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 Windows Server 2008 R2)
Library Kernel32.lib
DLL Kernel32.dll

See also






Process and Thread Functions


Vertdll APIs available in VBS enclaves