Queryable.DefaultIfEmpty<TSource> Method (IQueryable<TSource>, TSource)


Returns the elements of the specified sequence or the specified value in a singleton collection if the sequence is empty.

Namespace:   System.Linq
Assembly:  System.Core (in System.Core.dll)

public static IQueryable<TSource> DefaultIfEmpty<TSource>(
	this IQueryable<TSource> source,
	TSource defaultValue


Type: System.Linq.IQueryable<TSource>

The IQueryable<T> to return the specified value for if empty.

Type: TSource

The value to return if the sequence is empty.

Return Value

Type: System.Linq.IQueryable<TSource>

An IQueryable<T> that contains defaultValue if source is empty; otherwise, source.

Type Parameters


The type of the elements of source.

Exception Condition

source is null.

The DefaultIfEmpty<TSource>(IQueryable<TSource>, TSource) method generates a MethodCallExpression that represents calling DefaultIfEmpty<TSource>(IQueryable<TSource>, TSource) itself as a constructed generic method. It then passes the MethodCallExpression to the CreateQuery<TElement>(Expression) method of the IQueryProvider represented by the Provider property of the source parameter.

The query behavior that occurs as a result of executing an expression tree that represents calling DefaultIfEmpty<TSource>(IQueryable<TSource>, TSource) depends on the implementation of the type of the source parameter. The expected behavior is that it returns source if it is not empty. Otherwise, it returns an IQueryable<T> that contains defaultValue.

The following code example shows a situation in which it is useful to call DefaultIfEmpty<TSource>(IQueryable<TSource>, TSource) in a LINQ query. A default value is passed to DefaultIfEmpty<TSource>(IQueryable<TSource>, TSource) in this example.

// Create a list of Pet objects.
List<Pet> pets =
    new List<Pet>{ new Pet { Name="Barley", Age=8 },
                   new Pet { Name="Boots", Age=4 },
                   new Pet { Name="Whiskers", Age=1 } };

// This query selects only those pets that are 10 or older.
// In case there are no pets that meet that criteria, call
// DefaultIfEmpty(). This code passes an (optional) default
// value to DefaultIfEmpty().
string[] oldPets =
    .Where(pet => pet.Age >= 10)
    .Select(pet => pet.Name)

Console.WriteLine("First query: " + oldPets[0]);

// This query selects only those pets that are 10 or older.
// This code does not call DefaultIfEmpty().
string[] oldPets2 =
    .Where(pet => pet.Age >= 10)
    .Select(pet => pet.Name)

// There may be no elements in the array, so directly
// accessing element 0 may throw an exception.
    Console.WriteLine("Second query: " + oldPets2[0]);
catch (Exception e)
    Console.WriteLine("Second query: An exception was thrown: " + e.Message);

    This code produces the following output:

    First query: [EMPTY]
    Second query: An exception was thrown: Index was outside the bounds of the array.

Universal Windows Platform
Available since 8
.NET Framework
Available since 3.5
Portable Class Library
Supported in: portable .NET platforms
Available since 2.0
Windows Phone Silverlight
Available since 7.1
Windows Phone
Available since 8.1
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