Encoding.Unicode Property

Gets an encoding for the UTF-16 format using the little endian byte order.

Namespace:  System.Text
Assembly:  mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)

'Declaration
Public Shared ReadOnly Property Unicode As Encoding

Property Value

Type: System.Text.Encoding
An encoding for the UTF-16 format using the little endian byte order.

For information about the encodings supported by the .NET Framework and a discussion of which Unicode encoding to use, see Character Encoding in the .NET Framework.

The UnicodeEncoding object that is returned by this property may not have the appropriate behavior for your application. It uses replacement fallback to replace each string that it cannot encode and each byte that it cannot decode with a question mark ("?") character. Instead, you can call the UnicodeEncoding.UnicodeEncoding(Boolean, Boolean, Boolean) constructor to instantiate a little endian UnicodeEncoding object whose fallback is either an EncoderFallbackException or a DecoderFallbackException, as the following example illustrates.

Imports System.Text

Module Example
   Public Sub Main()
      Dim bytes() As Byte = { &h20, &h00, &h01, &hD8, &h68, &h00, &hA7, &h00}
      Dim enc As Encoding = New UnicodeEncoding(False, True, True)

      Try 
         Dim value As String = enc.GetString(bytes)
         Console.WriteLine()
         Console.WriteLine("'{0}'", value)
      Catch e As DecoderFallbackException      
         Console.WriteLine("Unable to decode {0} at index {1}", 
                           ShowBytes(e.BytesUnknown), e.Index)
      End Try 
   End Sub 

   Private Function ShowBytes(bytes As Byte()) As String 
      Dim returnString As String = Nothing 
      For Each byteValue In bytes
         returnString += String.Format("0x{0:X2} ", byteValue)
      Next 
      Return returnString.Trim()
   End Function 
End Module 
' The example displays the following output: 
'       Unable to decode 0x01 0xD8 at index 4

The following example determines the number of bytes required to encode a character array, encodes the characters, and displays the resulting bytes.

Imports System
Imports System.Text
Imports Microsoft.VisualBasic

Public Class SamplesEncoding   

   Public Shared Sub Main()

      ' The characters to encode: 
      '    Latin Small Letter Z (U+007A) 
      '    Latin Small Letter A (U+0061) 
      '    Combining Breve (U+0306) 
      '    Latin Small Letter AE With Acute (U+01FD) 
      '    Greek Small Letter Beta (U+03B2) 
      '    a high-surrogate value (U+D8FF) 
      '    a low-surrogate value (U+DCFF) 
      Dim myChars() As Char = {"z"c, "a"c, ChrW(&H0306), ChrW(&H01FD), ChrW(&H03B2), ChrW(&HD8FF), ChrW(&HDCFF)}


      ' Get different encodings. 
      Dim u7 As Encoding = Encoding.UTF7
      Dim u8 As Encoding = Encoding.UTF8
      Dim u16LE As Encoding = Encoding.Unicode
      Dim u16BE As Encoding = Encoding.BigEndianUnicode
      Dim u32 As Encoding = Encoding.UTF32

      ' Encode the entire array, and print out the counts and the resulting bytes.
      PrintCountsAndBytes(myChars, u7)
      PrintCountsAndBytes(myChars, u8)
      PrintCountsAndBytes(myChars, u16LE)
      PrintCountsAndBytes(myChars, u16BE)
      PrintCountsAndBytes(myChars, u32)

   End Sub 'Main


   Public Shared Sub PrintCountsAndBytes(chars() As Char, enc As Encoding)

      ' Display the name of the encoding used.
      Console.Write("{0,-30} :", enc.ToString())

      ' Display the exact byte count. 
      Dim iBC As Integer = enc.GetByteCount(chars)
      Console.Write(" {0,-3}", iBC)

      ' Display the maximum byte count. 
      Dim iMBC As Integer = enc.GetMaxByteCount(chars.Length)
      Console.Write(" {0,-3} :", iMBC)

      ' Encode the array of chars. 
      Dim bytes As Byte() = enc.GetBytes(chars)

      ' Display all the encoded bytes.
      PrintHexBytes(bytes)

   End Sub 'PrintCountsAndBytes


   Public Shared Sub PrintHexBytes(bytes() As Byte)

      If bytes Is Nothing OrElse bytes.Length = 0 Then
         Console.WriteLine("<none>")
      Else 
         Dim i As Integer 
         For i = 0 To bytes.Length - 1
            Console.Write("{0:X2} ", bytes(i))
         Next i
         Console.WriteLine()
      End If 

   End Sub 'PrintHexBytes 

End Class 'SamplesEncoding


'This code produces the following output. 

'System.Text.UTF7Encoding       : 18  23  :7A 61 2B 41 77 59 42 2F 51 4F 79 32 50 2F 63 2F 77 2D 
'System.Text.UTF8Encoding       : 12  24  :7A 61 CC 86 C7 BD CE B2 F1 8F B3 BF 
'System.Text.UnicodeEncoding    : 14  16  :7A 00 61 00 06 03 FD 01 B2 03 FF D8 FF DC 
'System.Text.UnicodeEncoding    : 14  16  :00 7A 00 61 03 06 01 FD 03 B2 D8 FF DC FF 
'System.Text.UTF32Encoding      : 24  32  :7A 00 00 00 61 00 00 00 06 03 00 00 FD 01 00 00 B2 03 00 00 FF FC 04 00

.NET Framework

Supported in: 4.5, 4, 3.5, 3.0, 2.0, 1.1, 1.0

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4, 3.5 SP1

Portable Class Library

Supported in: Portable Class Library

.NET for Windows Store apps

Supported in: Windows 8

.NET for Windows Phone apps

Supported in: Windows Phone 8.1, Windows Phone Silverlight 8.1, Windows Phone Silverlight 8

Windows Phone 8.1, Windows Phone 8, 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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