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Tip of the Day
Language:
Expertise: Beginner
Aug 6, 1997

Understanding Unicode

VB4 introduces the use of double-byte characters. Most of this is transparent to the programmer and requires no special consideration. When calling API functions or reading/writing to a file VB will handle the conversion for you automatically. However, there may be times when you want to force a condition that goes against VB's will. For example, you might want to write Unicode to a file, pass a Unicode string to a function, or receive a Unicode string from a routine. In these cases you will have to use VB4's new Byte declaration. A String Byte can vary between one or two bytes depending upon how it is used. A Byte-byte is exactly that: one byte. To convert a string variable into a byte array, use this code:
 Redim MyByteArray(0 to len(MyString$)-1) as Byte
MyByteArray() = StrConv(MyString$, vbFromUniCode)
To convert a byte array to a string:
 MyString$ = StrConv(BA(), vbUniCode)
Due to a bug or design limitation, VB4 does not allow you to convert a string to a binary array that is part of a Type structure. For example:
 TYPE MyByteType
	Bytes( 0 to 255) as Byte
END TYPE

Dim MBA as MhByteType

MBA.Bytes() = StrConv(MyString$, vbFromUniCode) 
returns an error. However,
 MyString$ = StrConv(MBA.Bytes() , vbUniCode) 
works as expected.
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