Writing windows programs in C/C++ can be a bear for even experienced programmers. I started out with the DEV C++ package and quickly switched to BCX. This is a basic to C/C++ translator that uses simple basic code and allows inline asm and C code. If you are familiar with basic you can then look at the generated C/C++ code and learn a lot!
Write your basic code on the included editor and compile and run it from the editor or even fancier, from the included visual IDE. This program has excellent help files and a good selection of examples. You can look at the C code it produces. You can make win-gui or console programs. BCX is written in BCX!
The whole free package can be downloaded, including the PellesC compiler, from:
There is quite a nice group of users at