Returns an enumerator that iterates through a collection.
Assembly: mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)
[Visual Basic, C#]
The foreach statement of the C# language (for each in Visual Basic) hides the complexity of the enumerators. Therefore, using foreach is recommended, instead of directly manipulating the enumerator.
Enumerators can be used to read the data in the collection, but they cannot be used to modify the underlying collection.
Initially, the enumerator is positioned before the first element in the collection. Reset also brings the enumerator back to this position. At this position, calling Current throws an exception. Therefore, you must call MoveNext to advance the enumerator to the first element of the collection before reading the value of Current.
If MoveNext passes the end of the collection, the enumerator is positioned after the last element in the collection and MoveNext returns false. When the enumerator is at this position, subsequent calls to MoveNext also return false. If the last call to MoveNext returned false, calling Current throws an exception. To set Current to the first element of the collection again, you can call Reset followed by MoveNext.
An enumerator remains valid as long as the collection remains unchanged. If changes are made to the collection, such as adding, modifying, or deleting elements, the enumerator can be invalidated and the next call to MoveNext or Reset throws an InvalidOperationException. If the collection is modified between MoveNext and Current, Current returns the element that it is set to, even if the enumerator is already invalidated.
The enumerator does not have exclusive access to the collection; therefore, enumerating through a collection is intrinsically not a thread safe procedure. Even when a collection is synchronized, other threads can still modify the collection, which causes the enumerator to throw an exception. To guarantee thread safety during enumeration, you can either lock the collection during the entire enumeration or catch the exceptions resulting from changes made by other threads.
This method is an O(1) operation.
Windows 7, Windows Vista SP1 or later, Windows XP SP3, Windows XP SP2 x64 Edition, Windows Server 2008 (Server Core not supported), Windows Server 2008 R2 (Server Core supported with SP1 or later), Windows Server 2003 SP2
The .NET Framework does not support all versions of every platform. For a list of the supported versions, see .NET Framework System Requirements.