Detecting Mouse clicks in windows using python

How can I detect mouse clicks regardless of the window the mouse is in?

Perferabliy in python, but if someone can explain it in any langauge I might be able to figure it out.

I found this on microsoft's site:

But I don't see how I can detect or pick up the notifications listed.

Tried using pygame's pygame.mouse.get_pos() function as follows:

import pygame
while True:
    print pygame.mouse.get_pos()

This just returns 0,0. I'm not familiar with pygame, is something missing?

In anycase I'd prefer a method without the need to install a 3rd party module. (other than pywin32 )

Asked by: Blake910 | Posted: 05-10-2021

Answer 1

The only way to detect mouse events outside your program is to install a Windows hook using SetWindowsHookEx. The pyHook module encapsulates the nitty-gritty details. Here's a sample that will print the location of every mouse click:

import pyHook
import pythoncom

def onclick(event):
    print event.Position
    return True

hm = pyHook.HookManager()

You can check the script that is installed with the module for more info about the event parameter.

pyHook might be tricky to use in a pure Python script, because it requires an active message pump. From the tutorial:

Any application that wishes to receive notifications of global input events must have a Windows message pump. The easiest way to get one of these is to use the PumpMessages method in the Win32 Extensions package for Python. [...] When run, this program just sits idle and waits for Windows events. If you are using a GUI toolkit (e.g. wxPython), this loop is unnecessary since the toolkit provides its own.

Answered by: Adelaide730 | Posted: 06-11-2021

Answer 2

I use win32api. It works when clicking on any windows.

# Code to check if left or right mouse buttons were pressed
import win32api
import time

state_left = win32api.GetKeyState(0x01)  # Left button down = 0 or 1. Button up = -127 or -128
state_right = win32api.GetKeyState(0x02)  # Right button down = 0 or 1. Button up = -127 or -128

while True:
    a = win32api.GetKeyState(0x01)
    b = win32api.GetKeyState(0x02)

    if a != state_left:  # Button state changed
        state_left = a
        if a < 0:
            print('Left Button Pressed')
            print('Left Button Released')

    if b != state_right:  # Button state changed
        state_right = b
        if b < 0:
            print('Right Button Pressed')
            print('Right Button Released')

Answered by: Julia795 | Posted: 06-11-2021

Answer 3

It's been a hot minute since this question was asked, but I thought I'd share my solution: I just used the built-in module ctypes. (I'm using Python 3.3 btw)

import ctypes
import time

def DetectClick(button, watchtime = 5):
    '''Waits watchtime seconds. Returns True on click, False otherwise'''
    if button in (1, '1', 'l', 'L', 'left', 'Left', 'LEFT'):
        bnum = 0x01
    elif button in (2, '2', 'r', 'R', 'right', 'Right', 'RIGHT'):
        bnum = 0x02

    start = time.time()
    while 1:
        if ctypes.windll.user32.GetKeyState(bnum) not in [0, 1]:
            # ^ this returns either 0 or 1 when button is not being held down
            return True
        elif time.time() - start >= watchtime:
    return False

Answered by: Lily524 | Posted: 06-11-2021

Answer 4

Windows MFC, including GUI programming, is accessible with python using the Python for Windows extensions by Mark Hammond. An O'Reilly Book Excerpt from Hammond's and Robinson's book shows how to hook mouse messages, .e.g:


Raw MFC is not easy or obvious, but searching the web for python examples may yield some usable examples.

Answered by: Connie418 | Posted: 06-11-2021

Answer 5

The windows way of doing it is to handle the WM_LBUTTONDBLCLK message.

For this to be sent, your window class needs to be created with the CS_DBLCLKS class style.

I'm afraid I don't know how to apply this in Python, but hopefully it might give you some hints.

Answered by: Blake462 | Posted: 06-11-2021

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