GlobalLock function (winbase.h)

Locks a global memory object and returns a pointer to the first byte of the object's memory block.

Note  The global functions have greater overhead and provide fewer features than other memory management functions. New applications should use the heap functions unless documentation states that a global function should be used. For more information, see Global and Local Functions.


LPVOID GlobalLock(
  [in] HGLOBAL hMem


[in] hMem

A handle to the global memory object. This handle is returned by either the GlobalAlloc or GlobalReAlloc function.

Return value

If the function succeeds, the return value is a pointer to the first byte of the memory block.

If the function fails, the return value is NULL. To get extended error information, call GetLastError.


The internal data structures for each memory object include a lock count that is initially zero. For movable memory objects, GlobalLock increments the count by one, and the GlobalUnlock function decrements the count by one. Each successful call that a process makes to GlobalLock for an object must be matched by a corresponding call to GlobalUnlock. Locked memory will not be moved or discarded, unless the memory object is reallocated by using the GlobalReAlloc function. The memory block of a locked memory object remains locked until its lock count is decremented to zero, at which time it can be moved or discarded.

Memory objects allocated with GMEM_FIXED always have a lock count of zero. For these objects, the value of the returned pointer is equal to the value of the specified handle.

If the specified memory block has been discarded or if the memory block has a zero-byte size, this function returns NULL.

Discarded objects always have a lock count of zero.


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 winbase.h (include Windows.h)
Library Kernel32.lib
DLL Kernel32.dll

See also

Global and Local Functions




Memory Management Functions