#700 – Dragging an Image to Microsoft Word

You can use the drag and drop functionality in WPF to drag an Image control out of the application.  You can drop this image onto a Word document if you convert the image to an enhanced metafile format.

Here’s the code that initiates the drag operation.

        private void Image_MouseLeftButtonDown(object sender, MouseButtonEventArgs e)
            Bitmap bitmap = ImageToBitmap(e.Source as System.Windows.Controls.Image);

            DataObject data = new DataObject(DataFormats.EnhancedMetafile, MakeMetafileStream(bitmap));

            DragDrop.DoDragDrop((DependencyObject)e.Source, data, DragDropEffects.Copy);

This makes use of a utility function to convert the Image to a Bitmap:

        private Bitmap ImageToBitmap(System.Windows.Controls.Image image)
            RenderTargetBitmap rtBmp = new RenderTargetBitmap((int)image.ActualWidth, (int)image.ActualHeight,
                96.0, 96.0, PixelFormats.Pbgra32);

            image.Measure(new System.Windows.Size((int)image.ActualWidth, (int)image.ActualHeight));
            image.Arrange(new Rect(new System.Windows.Size((int)image.ActualWidth, (int)image.ActualHeight)));


            PngBitmapEncoder encoder = new PngBitmapEncoder();
            MemoryStream stream = new MemoryStream();

            // Save to memory stream and create Bitamp from stream

            return new System.Drawing.Bitmap(stream);

This also requires a utility function that converts a Bitmap to a stream containing a Metafile, taken from Stack Overflow.

        // From http://stackoverflow.com/questions/5270763/convert-an-image-into-wmf-with-net
        private MemoryStream MakeMetafileStream(Bitmap image)
            Graphics graphics = null;
            Metafile metafile = null;
            var stream = new MemoryStream();
                using (graphics = Graphics.FromImage(image))
                    var hdc = graphics.GetHdc();
                    metafile = new Metafile(stream, hdc);
                using (graphics = Graphics.FromImage(metafile))
                { graphics.DrawImage(image, 0, 0); }
                if (graphics != null)
                { graphics.Dispose(); }
                if (metafile != null)
                { metafile.Dispose(); }
            return stream;

Here’s the code in action:


About Sean
Software developer in the Twin Cities area, passionate about software development and sailing.

2 Responses to #700 – Dragging an Image to Microsoft Word

  1. Pingback: Dew Drop – November 28, 2012 (#1,451) | Alvin Ashcraft's Morning Dew

  2. Andrew says:

    Hi Sean, thx for this nice peace of code.
    On its own it works perfectly. In my application I need the functionality to drop on Word and other targets as well like the Windows Explorer, the Desktop and so on. I tried the DataFormats.FileDrop (as I did before) which worked before for the Desktop and the Explorer, but if I use both of this DataFormats together – the Word Drop doesn’t work anymore. I assume that word checks for the FileDrop first and ignores the EnhancedMetafile format. So the image never appears in Word.
    Do you have any idea how to get this working together peacefully or am I just doing something completely wrong?


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