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How to add an icon in a header of WinForms ContextMenuStripEx?

Platform: WinForms |
Control: General |
Published Date: September 15, 2020 |
Last Revised Date: September 15, 2020

By default, there is no support to add the image in header of ContextMenuStripEx, but you can override the Paint method of ContextMenuStripEx control by rendering the customized ContextMenuStripEx class.

Step 1: Create the custom render class called CustomContextMenuStripEx inheriting from ContextMenuStripEx.

Step 2: Override the paint method to add the image in header area of ContextMenuStripEx.

Step 3: Then initialize the custom render class named CustomContextMenuStripEx  and add the ToolStripMenuItem in it.

Step 4: Now assign the initialized contextmenustrip to the Form’s ContextMenuStrip property.


//Custom renderer class
public class CustomContextMenuStripEx  :  ContextMenuStripEx
     public override Rectangle DisplayRectangle
               Rectangle rc = base.DisplayRectangle;
               rc.Y += TitleHeight;
               return rc;
     public override Size GetPreferredSize(Size proposedSize)
          Size szResult = base.GetPreferredSize(proposedSize);
          szResult.Height += TitleHeight;
          return szResult;
     internal int TitleHeight
          get { return 25; }
     protected override void OnPaint(PaintEventArgs e)
          Image image = Image.FromFile(@"..\..\Images\ExitIcon.png");
          e.Graphics.FillRectangle(new SolidBrush(Control.DefaultBackColor), 1, 1, this.Width - 2, TitleHeight);
          Rectangle imgRect = new Rectangle(2, 2, 16, 16);
          //Add the image
          e.Graphics.DrawImage(image, imgRect);
          Rectangle textRect = new Rectangle(imgRect.Width + 2, 2, this.Width, TitleHeight);
          e.Graphics.DrawString(Text, this.Font, new SolidBrush(Color.Black), textRect);


Assigning the custom renderer ContextMenuStripEx class to the Form ContextMenuStrip Property.

public Form1()
     this.StartPosition = FormStartPosition.CenterScreen;
     //Initializing the custom renderer class
     this.contextMenuStripEx = new CustomContextMenuStripEx();
     this.contextMenuStripEx.Text = "Exit";
     this.toolStripMenuItem1 = new System.Windows.Forms.ToolStripMenuItem();
     this.toolStripMenuItem2 = new System.Windows.Forms.ToolStripMenuItem();
     this.toolStripMenuItem3 = new System.Windows.Forms.ToolStripMenuItem();
     //Associate the context menu
     this.toolStripMenuItem1.Image = System.Drawing.Image.FromFile(@"..\..\Images\CopyHS.png");
     this.toolStripMenuItem2.Image = System.Drawing.Image.FromFile(@"..\..\Images\CutHS.png");
     this.toolStripMenuItem3.Image = System.Drawing.Image.FromFile(@"..\..\Images\PasteHS.png");
     this.toolStripMenuItem1.Text = "New";
     this.toolStripMenuItem2.Text = "Copy";
     this.toolStripMenuItem3.Text = "Cut";
     this.contextMenuStripEx.Items.AddRange(new System.Windows.Forms.ToolStripItem[]      
          this.toolStripMenuItem1, this.toolStripMenuItem2, this.toolStripMenuItem3 
     //Add the CustomcontextmenustripEx to form ContextMenuStrip
     this.ContextMenuStrip = this.contextMenuStripEx;


Output screenshot:

ContextMenuStripEx with header image


[View Sample in GitHub]

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