Better way to cast object to int


This is probably trivial, but I can't think of a better way to do it. I have a COM object that returns a variant which becomes an object in C#. The only way I can get this into an int is

int test = int.Parse(string.Format("{0}", myobject))

Is there a cleaner way to do this? Thanks

4/13/2009 8:02:50 PM

Accepted Answer

You have several options:

  • (int) — Cast operator. Works if the object already is an integer at some level in the inheritance hierarchy or if there is an implicit conversion defined.

  • int.Parse()/int.TryParse() — For converting from a string of unknown format.

  • int.ParseExact()/int.TryParseExact() — For converting from a string in a specific format

  • Convert.ToInt32() — For converting an object of unknown type. It will use an explicit and implicit conversion or IConvertible implementation if any are defined.

  • as int? — Note the "?". The as operator is only for reference types, and so I used "?" to signify a Nullable<int>. The "as" operator works like Convert.To____(), but think TryParse() rather than Parse(): it returns null rather than throwing an exception if the conversion fails.

Of these, I would prefer (int) if the object really is just a boxed integer. Otherwise use Convert.ToInt32() in this case.

Note that this is a very general answer: I want to throw some attention to Darren Clark's response because I think it does a good job addressing the specifics here, but came in late and wasn't voted as well yet. He gets my vote for "accepted answer", anyway, for also recommending (int), for pointing out that if it fails (int)(short) might work instead, and for recommending you check your debugger to find out the actual runtime type.

6/6/2009 12:00:41 AM

The cast (int) myobject should just work.

If that gives you an invalid cast exception then it is probably because the variant type isn't VT_I4. My bet is that a variant with VT_I4 is converted into a boxed int, VT_I2 into a boxed short, etc.

When doing a cast on a boxed value type it is only valid to cast it to the type boxed. Foe example, if the returned variant is actually a VT_I2 then (int) (short) myObject should work.

Easiest way to find out is to inspect the returned object and take a look at its type in the debugger. Also make sure that in the interop assembly you have the return value marked with MarshalAs(UnmanagedType.Struct)

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