Encoding.GetChars Method (Byte(), Int32, Int32)

When overridden in a derived class, decodes a sequence of bytes from the specified byte array into a set of characters.

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

Public Overridable Function GetChars ( _
	bytes As Byte(), _
	index As Integer, _
	count As Integer _
) As Char()


Type: System.Byte()
The byte array containing the sequence of bytes to decode.
Type: System.Int32
The zero-based index of the first byte to decode.
Type: System.Int32
The number of bytes to decode.

Return Value

Type: System.Char()
A character array containing the results of decoding the specified sequence of bytes.


bytes is Nothing.


index or count is less than zero.


index and count do not denote a valid range in bytes.


A fallback occurred (see Understanding Encodings for complete explanation).

If the data to be converted is available only in sequential blocks (such as data read from a stream) or if the amount of data is so large that it needs to be divided into smaller blocks, the application should use the Decoder or the Encoder provided by the GetDecoder method or the GetEncoder method, respectively, of a derived class.

For a discussion of programming considerations for use of this method, see the Encoding class description.

The following code example encodes a string into an array of bytes, and then decodes a range of the bytes into an array of characters.

Imports System.Text

Public Class Example

   Public Shared Sub Demo(ByVal outputBlock As System.Windows.Controls.TextBlock)

      ' Create two instances of UTF32Encoding: one with little-endian byte order and one with big-endian byte order.
      Dim u32LE As Encoding = Encoding.GetEncoding("utf-32")
      Dim u32BE As Encoding = Encoding.GetEncoding("utf-32BE")

      ' Use a string containing the following characters:
      '    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)
      Dim myStr As String = "za" & ChrW(&H306) & ChrW(&H1FD) & ChrW(&H3B2)

      ' Encode the string using the big-endian byte order.
      ' NOTE: In VB.NET, arrays contain one extra element by default.
      '       The following line creates barrBE with the exact number of elements required.
      Dim barrBE(u32BE.GetByteCount(myStr) - 1) As Byte
      u32BE.GetBytes(myStr, 0, myStr.Length, barrBE, 0)

      ' Encode the string using the little-endian byte order.
      ' NOTE: In VB.NET, arrays contain one extra element by default.
      '       The following line creates barrLE with the exact number of elements required.
      Dim barrLE(u32LE.GetByteCount(myStr) - 1) As Byte
      u32LE.GetBytes(myStr, 0, myStr.Length, barrLE, 0)

      ' Get the char counts, decode eight bytes starting at index 0,
      ' and print out the counts and the resulting bytes.
      outputBlock.Text &= "BE array with BE encoding : "
      PrintCountsAndChars(outputBlock, barrBE, 0, 8, u32BE)
      outputBlock.Text &= "LE array with LE encoding : "
      PrintCountsAndChars(outputBlock, barrLE, 0, 8, u32LE)

   End Sub 'Main

   Public Shared Sub PrintCountsAndChars(ByVal outputBlock As System.Windows.Controls.TextBlock, ByVal bytes() As Byte, ByVal index As Integer, ByVal count As Integer, ByVal enc As Encoding)

      ' Display the name of the encoding used.
      outputBlock.Text += String.Format("{0,-25} :", enc.ToString())

      ' Display the exact character count.
      Dim iCC As Integer = enc.GetCharCount(bytes, index, count)
      outputBlock.Text += String.Format(" {0,-3}", iCC)

      ' Display the maximum character count.
      Dim iMCC As Integer = enc.GetMaxCharCount(count)
      outputBlock.Text += String.Format(" {0,-3} :", iMCC)

      ' Decode the bytes.
      Dim chars As Char() = enc.GetChars(bytes, index, count)

      ' The following is an alternative way to decode the bytes:
      ' NOTE: In VB.NET, arrays contain one extra element by default.
      '       The following line creates the array with the exact number of elements required.
      ' Dim chars(iCC - 1) As Char
      ' enc.GetChars( bytes, index, count, chars, 0 )

      ' Display the characters.
      outputBlock.Text &= chars & vbCrLf

   End Sub 'PrintCountsAndChars 

End Class 'SamplesEncoding

'This code produces the following output.  The question marks take the place of characters that cannot be displayed at the console.
'BE array with BE encoding : System.Text.UTF32Encoding : 2   6   :za
'LE array with LE encoding : System.Text.UTF32Encoding : 2   6   :za


Supported in: 5, 4, 3

Silverlight for Windows Phone

Supported in: Windows Phone OS 7.1, Windows Phone OS 7.0

XNA Framework

Supported in: Xbox 360, Windows Phone OS 7.0

For a list of the operating systems and browsers that are supported by Silverlight, see Supported Operating Systems and Browsers.

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