MainMenu Class

Represents the menu structure of a form. Although MenuStrip replaces and adds functionality to the MainMenu control of previous versions, MainMenu is retained for both backward compatibility and future use if you choose.

Namespace: System.Windows.Forms
Assembly: System.Windows.Forms (in

Public Class MainMenu
	Inherits Menu
Dim instance As MainMenu

public class MainMenu extends Menu
public class MainMenu extends Menu

The MainMenu control represents the container for the menu structure of a form. A menu is composed of MenuItem objects that represent the individual menu commands in the menu structure. Each MenuItem can be a command for your application or a parent menu for other submenu items. To bind the MainMenu to the Form that will display it, assign the MainMenu to the Menu property of the Form.

For applications that will have support for multiple languages, you can use the RightToLeft property to display the text of the menu from right to left to support languages such as Arabic.

You can create different MainMenu objects to represent different menu structures for your form. If you want to reuse the menu structure contained in a specific MainMenu, you can use its CloneMenu method to create a copy. Once you have a copy of the menu structure, you can make the appropriate modifications for your new menu structure.


Cutting and pasting menu items from one form to another in the designer might not work as expected if the form you are pasting into has no menu items defined.

The following code example creates a MainMenu, assigns two MenuItem objects to the MainMenu and binds it to a form. This example requires that you have a Form created that is named Form1.

Public Sub CreateMyMainMenu()
    ' Create an empty MainMenu.
    Dim mainMenu1 As New MainMenu()
    Dim menuItem1 As New MenuItem()
    Dim menuItem2 As New MenuItem()
    menuItem1.Text = "File"
    menuItem2.Text = "Edit"
    ' Add two MenuItem objects to the MainMenu.
    ' Bind the MainMenu to Form1.
    Menu = mainMenu1
End Sub

public void CreateMyMainMenu()
    // Create an empty MainMenu.
    MainMenu mainMenu1 = new MainMenu();
    MenuItem menuItem1 = new MenuItem();
    MenuItem menuItem2 = new MenuItem();


    // Add two MenuItem objects to the MainMenu.

    // Bind the MainMenu to Form1.
} //CreateMyMainMenu


Any public static (Shared in Visual Basic) members of this type are thread safe. Any instance members are not guaranteed to be thread safe.

Windows 98, Windows 2000 SP4, Windows CE, Windows Millennium Edition, Windows Mobile for Pocket PC, Windows Mobile for Smartphone, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows XP SP2, Windows XP Starter Edition

The .NET Framework does not support all versions of every platform. For a list of the supported versions, see System Requirements.

.NET Framework

Supported in: 2.0, 1.1, 1.0

.NET Compact Framework

Supported in: 2.0, 1.0