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ConfigurationManager.AppSettings Property

Gets the AppSettingsSection data for the current application's default configuration.

Namespace:  System.Configuration
Assembly:  System.Configuration (in System.Configuration.dll)

public static NameValueCollection AppSettings { get; }

Property Value

Type: System.Collections.Specialized.NameValueCollection
Returns a NameValueCollection object that contains the contents of the AppSettingsSection object for the current application's default configuration.

ExceptionCondition
ConfigurationErrorsException

Could not retrieve a NameValueCollection object with the application settings data.

A AppSettingsSection object contains the contents of the configuration file's appSettings section.

The first example shows a simple console application that reads application settings, adds a new setting, and updates an existing setting.

using System;
using System.Configuration;

namespace ConsoleApplication1
{
    class Program
    {
        static void Main(string[] args)
        {
            ReadAllSettings();
            ReadSetting("Setting1");
            ReadSetting("NotValid");
            AddUpdateAppSettings("NewSetting", "May 7, 2014");
            AddUpdateAppSettings("Setting1", "May 8, 2014");
            ReadAllSettings();
        }

        static void ReadAllSettings()
        {
            try
            {
                var appSettings = ConfigurationManager.AppSettings;

                if (appSettings.Count == 0)
                {
                    Console.WriteLine("AppSettings is empty.");
                }
                else
                {
                    foreach (var key in appSettings.AllKeys)
                    {
                        Console.WriteLine("Key: {0} Value: {1}", key, appSettings[key]);
                    }
                }
            }
            catch (ConfigurationErrorsException)
            {
                Console.WriteLine("Error reading app settings");
            }
        }

        static void ReadSetting(string key)
        {
            try
            {
                var appSettings = ConfigurationManager.AppSettings;
                string result = appSettings[key] ?? "Not Found";
                Console.WriteLine(result);
            }
            catch (ConfigurationErrorsException)
            {
                Console.WriteLine("Error reading app settings");
            }
        }

        static void AddUpdateAppSettings(string key, string value)
        {
            try
            {
                var configFile = ConfigurationManager.OpenExeConfiguration(ConfigurationUserLevel.None);
                var settings = configFile.AppSettings.Settings;
                if (settings[key] == null)
                {
                    settings.Add(key, value);
                }
                else
                {
                    settings[key].Value = value;
                }
                configFile.Save(ConfigurationSaveMode.Modified);
                ConfigurationManager.RefreshSection(configFile.AppSettings.SectionInformation.Name);
            }
            catch (ConfigurationErrorsException)
            {
                Console.WriteLine("Error writing app settings");
            }
        }
    }
}

The previous example assumes your project has an App.config file as shown below.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
<configuration>
    <startup> 
        <supportedRuntime version="v4.0" sku=".NETFramework,Version=v4.5" />
    </startup>
  <appSettings>
    <add key="Setting1" value="May 5, 2014"/>
    <add key="Setting2" value="May 6, 2014"/>
  </appSettings>
</configuration>

.NET Framework

Supported in: 4.5, 4, 3.5, 3.0, 2.0

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4, 3.5 SP1

Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, Windows 7, Windows Vista SP2, Windows Server 2008 (Server Core Role not supported), Windows Server 2008 R2 (Server Core Role supported with SP1 or later; Itanium not supported)

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

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