RegistryValueKind Enumeration


The .NET API Reference documentation has a new home. Visit the .NET API Browser on to see the new experience.

Specifies the data types to use when storing values in the registry, or identifies the data type of a value in the registry.

Namespace:   Microsoft.Win32
Assembly:  mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)

public enum RegistryValueKind

Member nameDescription

Binary data in any form. This value is equivalent to the Win32 API registry data type REG_BINARY.


A 32-bit binary number. This value is equivalent to the Win32 API registry data type REG_DWORD.


A null-terminated string that contains unexpanded references to environment variables, such as %PATH%, that are expanded when the value is retrieved. This value is equivalent to the Win32 API registry data type REG_EXPAND_SZ.


An array of null-terminated strings, terminated by two null characters. This value is equivalent to the Win32 API registry data type REG_MULTI_SZ.


No data type.


A 64-bit binary number. This value is equivalent to the Win32 API registry data type REG_QWORD.


A null-terminated string. This value is equivalent to the Win32 API registry data type REG_SZ.


An unsupported registry data type. For example, the Microsoft Win32 API registry data type REG_RESOURCE_LIST is unsupported. Use this value to specify that the SetValue method should determine the appropriate registry data type when storing a name/value pair.

The RegistryValueKind enumeration defines the set of supported registry data types and the value that is used for unsupported types (Unknown). Starting in the .NET Framework 4, you can specify not to use a data type with the None value.

Use the RegistryKey.GetValueKind method to determine the data type of a registry key value before retrieving the value. When you set a registry key value, use the SetValue method to specify the registry data type explicitly.

The following code example creates a registry key and sets several values for that key, using RegistryValueKind to specify the registry data types. The example then uses RegistryKey.GetValueKind to check the registry data types, in order to retrieve the values and display them.

using System;
using Microsoft.Win32;

public class Example
    public static void Main()
        // Delete and recreate the test key.
        Registry.CurrentUser.DeleteSubKey("RegistryValueKindExample", false);
        RegistryKey rk = Registry.CurrentUser.CreateSubKey("RegistryValueKindExample");

        // Create name/value pairs.

        // This overload supports QWord (long) values. 
        rk.SetValue("QuadWordValue", 42, RegistryValueKind.QWord);

        // The following SetValue calls have the same effect as using the
        // SetValue overload that does not specify RegistryValueKind.
        rk.SetValue("DWordValue", 42, RegistryValueKind.DWord);
        rk.SetValue("MultipleStringValue", new string[] {"One", "Two", "Three"}, RegistryValueKind.MultiString);
        rk.SetValue("BinaryValue", new byte[] {10, 43, 44, 45, 14, 255}, RegistryValueKind.Binary);
        rk.SetValue("StringValue", "The path is %PATH%", RegistryValueKind.String);

        // This overload supports setting expandable string values. Compare
        // the output from this value with the previous string value.
        rk.SetValue("ExpandedStringValue", "The path is %PATH%", RegistryValueKind.ExpandString);

        // Display all name/value pairs stored in the test key, with each
        // registry data type in parentheses.
        string[] valueNames = rk.GetValueNames();
        foreach (string s in valueNames)
            RegistryValueKind rvk = rk.GetValueKind(s);
            switch (rvk)
                case RegistryValueKind.MultiString :
                    string[] values = (string[]) rk.GetValue(s);
                    Console.Write("\r\n {0} ({1}) =", s, rvk);
                    for (int i = 0; i < values.Length; i++)
                        if (i != 0) Console.Write(",");
                        Console.Write(" \"{0}\"", values[i]);

                case RegistryValueKind.Binary :
                    byte[] bytes = (byte[]) rk.GetValue(s);
                    Console.Write("\r\n {0} ({1}) =", s, rvk);
                    for (int i = 0; i < bytes.Length; i++)
                        // Display each byte as two hexadecimal digits.
                        Console.Write(" {0:X2}", bytes[i]);

                default :
                    Console.WriteLine("\r\n {0} ({1}) = {2}", s, rvk, rk.GetValue(s));

This code example produces the following output:
 QuadWordValue (QWord) = 42

 DWordValue (DWord) = 42

 MultipleStringValue (MultiString) =, "One", "Two", "Three"

 BinaryValue (Binary) = 0A 2B 2C 2D 0E FF

 StringValue (String) = The path is %PATH%

 ExpandedStringValue (ExpandString) = The path is C:\Program Files\Microsoft.NET\SDK\v2.0\Bin;
 [***The remainder of this output is omitted.***]


.NET Framework
Available since 2.0
Return to top