This documentation is archived and is not being maintained.

Data Types

The data type of a programming element refers to what kind of data it can hold and how that data is stored. Data types apply to all values that can be stored in computer memory or participate in the evaluation of an expression. Every variable, literal, constant, property, procedure argument, and procedure return value has a data type.

A declared data type is specified as part of the declaration of a programming element. Unless you use typeless programming, you must declare data types for all your programming elements.

This section describes the declaration and use of Visual Basic .NET data types.

In This Section

Data Type Declaration
Covers declaring data types of various programming elements.
Elementary Data Types
Discusses numeric, character, and miscellaneous types provided by Visual Basic.
Composite Data Types
Summarizes structures, arrays, and classes as data types.
Data Type Implementation
Illustrates how Visual Basic .NET classifies and implements various data types.
Type Conversions
Explains changing between data types, classifications of conversions, special considerations.
Structures: Your Own Data Types
Discusses structures, how to declare them, and how to use them.
Typeless Programming
Provides an overview of programming without declaring data types, type semantics.

Related Sections

Data Type Summary
Lists the elementary data types supplied by Visual Basic .NET.