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DateTime.ToString Method (String)

Converts the value of the current DateTime object to its equivalent string representation using the specified format.

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

public string ToString (
	string format
)
public String ToString (
	String format
)
public function ToString (
	format : String
) : String
Not applicable.

Parameters

format

A DateTime format string.

Return Value

A string representation of value of the current DateTime object as specified by format.
Exception typeCondition

FormatException

The length of format is 1, and it is not one of the format specifier characters defined for DateTimeFormatInfo.

-or-

format does not contain a valid custom format pattern.

The format parameter should contain either a format specifier character or a custom format pattern. For more information, see the summary page for System.Globalization.DateTimeFormatInfo.

If format is a null reference (Nothing in Visual Basic) or an empty string, the general format specifier, 'G', is used.

The .NET Framework provides extensive formatting support, which is described in greater detail in the following formatting topics:

This method uses formatting information derived from the current culture. For more information, see CurrentCulture.

The following code example formats a DateTime object using the thread current culture, a specified culture, and all the standard date and time format specifiers.

// This code example demonstrates the ToString(String) and 
// ToString(String, IFormatProvider) methods for the DateTime 
// type in conjunction with the standard date and time 
// format specifiers.

using System;
using System.Globalization;
using System.Threading;

class Sample 
{
    public static void Main() 
    {
    string msgShortDate = "(d) Short date: . . . . . . . ";
    string msgLongDate  = "(D) Long date:. . . . . . . . ";
    string msgShortTime = "(t) Short time: . . . . . . . ";
    string msgLongTime  = "(T) Long time:. . . . . . . . ";
    string msgFullDateShortTime = 
                          "(f) Full date/short time: . . ";
    string msgFullDateLongTime =
                          "(F) Full date/long time:. . . ";
    string msgGeneralDateShortTime = 
                          "(g) General date/short time:. ";
    string msgGeneralDateLongTime = 
                          "(G) General date/long time (default):\n" +
                          "    . . . . . . . . . . . . . ";
    string msgMonth   =   "(M) Month:. . . . . . . . . . ";
    string msgRFC1123 =   "(R) RFC1123:. . . . . . . . . ";
    string msgSortable =  "(s) Sortable: . . . . . . . . ";
    string msgUniSortInvariant = 
                          "(u) Universal sortable (invariant):\n" + 
                          "    . . . . . . . . . . . . . ";
    string msgUniSort =   "(U) Universal sortable: . . . ";
    string msgYear =      "(Y) Year: . . . . . . . . . . ";
    string msgRoundtripLocal        = "(o) Roundtrip (local):. . . . ";
    string msgRoundtripUTC          = "(o) Roundtrip (UTC):. . . . . ";
    string msgRoundtripUnspecified  = "(o) Roundtrip (Unspecified):. ";


    string msg1 = "Use ToString(String) and the current thread culture.\n";
    string msg2 = "Use ToString(String, IFormatProvider) and a specified culture.\n";
    string msgCulture  = "Culture:";
    string msgThisDate = "This date and time: {0}\n";

    DateTime thisDate  = DateTime.Now;
    DateTime  utcDate  = thisDate.ToUniversalTime();
    DateTime unspecifiedDate = new DateTime(2000, 3, 20, 13, 2, 3, 0, DateTimeKind.Unspecified);
    CultureInfo ci;

// Format the current date and time in various ways.
    Console.Clear();
    Console.WriteLine("Standard DateTime Format Specifiers:\n");
    Console.WriteLine(msgThisDate, thisDate);
    Console.WriteLine(msg1);

// Display the thread current culture, which is used to format the values.
    ci = Thread.CurrentThread.CurrentCulture;
    Console.WriteLine("{0,-30}{1}\n", msgCulture, ci.DisplayName);

    Console.WriteLine(msgShortDate            +         thisDate.ToString("d"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgLongDate             +         thisDate.ToString("D"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgShortTime            +         thisDate.ToString("t"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgLongTime             +         thisDate.ToString("T"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgFullDateShortTime    +         thisDate.ToString("f"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgFullDateLongTime     +         thisDate.ToString("F"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgGeneralDateShortTime +         thisDate.ToString("g"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgGeneralDateLongTime  +         thisDate.ToString("G"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgMonth                +         thisDate.ToString("M"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRFC1123              +          utcDate.ToString("R"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgSortable             +         thisDate.ToString("s"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgUniSortInvariant     +          utcDate.ToString("u"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgUniSort              +         thisDate.ToString("U"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgYear                 +         thisDate.ToString("Y"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRoundtripLocal       +         thisDate.ToString("o"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRoundtripUTC         +          utcDate.ToString("o"));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRoundtripUnspecified +  unspecifiedDate.ToString("o"));

    Console.WriteLine();

// Display the same values using a CultureInfo object. The CultureInfo class 
// implements IFormatProvider.
    Console.WriteLine(msg2);

// Display the culture used to format the values. 
    ci = new CultureInfo("de-DE");
    Console.WriteLine("{0,-30}{1}\n", msgCulture, ci.DisplayName);

    Console.WriteLine(msgShortDate            +         thisDate.ToString("d", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgLongDate             +         thisDate.ToString("D", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgShortTime            +         thisDate.ToString("t", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgLongTime             +         thisDate.ToString("T", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgFullDateShortTime    +         thisDate.ToString("f", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgFullDateLongTime     +         thisDate.ToString("F", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgGeneralDateShortTime +         thisDate.ToString("g", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgGeneralDateLongTime  +         thisDate.ToString("G", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgMonth                +         thisDate.ToString("M", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRFC1123              +         utcDate.ToString("R", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgSortable             +         thisDate.ToString("s", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgUniSortInvariant     +         utcDate.ToString("u", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgUniSort              +         thisDate.ToString("U", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgYear                 +         thisDate.ToString("Y", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRoundtripLocal       +         thisDate.ToString("o", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRoundtripUTC         +          utcDate.ToString("o", ci));
    Console.WriteLine(msgRoundtripUnspecified +  unspecifiedDate.ToString("o", ci));

    Console.WriteLine();
    }
}
/*
This code example produces the following results:

Standard DateTime Format Specifiers:

This date and time: 4/17/2006 2:22:48 PM

Use ToString(String) and the current thread culture.

Culture:                      English (United States)

(d) Short date: . . . . . . . 4/17/2006
(D) Long date:. . . . . . . . Monday, April 17, 2006
(t) Short time: . . . . . . . 2:22 PM
(T) Long time:. . . . . . . . 2:22:48 PM
(f) Full date/short time: . . Monday, April 17, 2006 2:22 PM
(F) Full date/long time:. . . Monday, April 17, 2006 2:22:48 PM
(g) General date/short time:. 4/17/2006 2:22 PM
(G) General date/long time (default):
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4/17/2006 2:22:48 PM
(M) Month:. . . . . . . . . . April 17
(R) RFC1123:. . . . . . . . . Mon, 17 Apr 2006 21:22:48 GMT
(s) Sortable: . . . . . . . . 2006-04-17T14:22:48
(u) Universal sortable (invariant):
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2006-04-17 21:22:48Z
(U) Universal sortable: . . . Monday, April 17, 2006 9:22:48 PM
(Y) Year: . . . . . . . . . . April, 2006
(o) Roundtrip (local):. . . . 2006-04-17T14:22:48.2698750-07:00
(o) Roundtrip (UTC):. . . . . 2006-04-17T21:22:48.2698750Z
(o) Roundtrip (Unspecified):. 2000-03-20T13:02:03.0000000

Use ToString(String, IFormatProvider) and a specified culture.

Culture:                      German (Germany)

(d) Short date: . . . . . . . 17.04.2006
(D) Long date:. . . . . . . . Montag, 17. April 2006
(t) Short time: . . . . . . . 14:22
(T) Long time:. . . . . . . . 14:22:48
(f) Full date/short time: . . Montag, 17. April 2006 14:22
(F) Full date/long time:. . . Montag, 17. April 2006 14:22:48
(g) General date/short time:. 17.04.2006 14:22
(G) General date/long time (default):
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.04.2006 14:22:48
(M) Month:. . . . . . . . . . 17 April
(R) RFC1123:. . . . . . . . . Mon, 17 Apr 2006 21:22:48 GMT
(s) Sortable: . . . . . . . . 2006-04-17T14:22:48
(u) Universal sortable (invariant):
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2006-04-17 21:22:48Z
(U) Universal sortable: . . . Montag, 17. April 2006 21:22:48
(Y) Year: . . . . . . . . . . April 2006
(o) Roundtrip (local):. . . . 2006-04-17T14:22:48.2698750-07:00
(o) Roundtrip (UTC):. . . . . 2006-04-17T21:22:48.2698750Z
(o) Roundtrip (Unspecified):. 2000-03-20T13:02:03.0000000

*/

Windows 98, Windows Server 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 Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 is supported on Windows Vista, Microsoft Windows XP SP2, and Windows Server 2003 SP1.

.NET Framework

Supported in: 3.0, 2.0, 1.1, 1.0

.NET Compact Framework

Supported in: 2.0, 1.0

XNA Framework

Supported in: 1.0
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