Ogre Psalm33 Ogre Psalm33 - 9 days ago 5
C# Question

C# vs Java Enum (for those new to C#)

I've been programming in Java for a while and just got thrown onto a project that's written entirely in C#. I'm trying to come up to speed in C#, and noticed enums used in several places in my new project, but at first glance, C#'s enums seem to be more simplistic than the Java 1.5+ implementation. Can anyone enumerate the differences between C# and Java enums, and how to overcome the differences? (I don't want to start a language flame war, I just want to know how to do some things in C# that I used to do in Java). For example, could someone post a C# counterpart to Sun's famous Planet enum example?

public enum Planet {
MERCURY (3.303e+23, 2.4397e6),
VENUS (4.869e+24, 6.0518e6),
EARTH (5.976e+24, 6.37814e6),
MARS (6.421e+23, 3.3972e6),
JUPITER (1.9e+27, 7.1492e7),
SATURN (5.688e+26, 6.0268e7),
URANUS (8.686e+25, 2.5559e7),
NEPTUNE (1.024e+26, 2.4746e7),
PLUTO (1.27e+22, 1.137e6);

private final double mass; // in kilograms
private final double radius; // in meters
Planet(double mass, double radius) {
this.mass = mass;
this.radius = radius;
public double mass() { return mass; }
public double radius() { return radius; }

// universal gravitational constant (m3 kg-1 s-2)
public static final double G = 6.67300E-11;

public double surfaceGravity() {
return G * mass / (radius * radius);
public double surfaceWeight(double otherMass) {
return otherMass * surfaceGravity();

// Example usage (slight modification of Sun's example):
public static void main(String[] args) {
Planet pEarth = Planet.EARTH;
double earthRadius = pEarth.radius(); // Just threw it in to show usage

// Argument passed in is earth Weight. Calculate weight on each planet:
double earthWeight = Double.parseDouble(args[0]);
double mass = earthWeight/pEarth.surfaceGravity();
for (Planet p : Planet.values())
System.out.printf("Your weight on %s is %f%n",
p, p.surfaceWeight(mass));

// Example output:
$ java Planet 175
Your weight on MERCURY is 66.107583
Your weight on VENUS is 158.374842
[etc ...]


Enumerations in the CLR are simply named constants. The underlying type must be integral. In Java an enumeration is more like a named instance of a type. That type can be quite complex and - as your example shows - contain multiple fields of various types.

To port the example to C# I would just change the enum to an immutable class and expose static readonly instances of that class:

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;

namespace ConsoleApplication1
    class Program
        static void Main(string[] args)
            Planet pEarth = Planet.MERCURY;
            double earthRadius = pEarth.Radius; // Just threw it in to show usage

            double earthWeight = double.Parse("123");
            double mass = earthWeight / pEarth.SurfaceGravity();
            foreach (Planet p in Planet.Values)
                Console.WriteLine("Your weight on {0} is {1}", p, p.SurfaceWeight(mass));


    public class Planet
        public static readonly Planet MERCURY = new Planet("Mercury", 3.303e+23, 2.4397e6);
        public static readonly Planet VENUS = new Planet("Venus", 4.869e+24, 6.0518e6);
        public static readonly Planet EARTH = new Planet("Earth", 5.976e+24, 6.37814e6);
        public static readonly Planet MARS = new Planet("Mars", 6.421e+23, 3.3972e6);
        public static readonly Planet JUPITER = new Planet("Jupiter", 1.9e+27, 7.1492e7);
        public static readonly Planet SATURN = new Planet("Saturn", 5.688e+26, 6.0268e7);
        public static readonly Planet URANUS = new Planet("Uranus", 8.686e+25, 2.5559e7);
        public static readonly Planet NEPTUNE = new Planet("Neptune", 1.024e+26, 2.4746e7);
        public static readonly Planet PLUTO = new Planet("Pluto", 1.27e+22, 1.137e6);

        public static IEnumerable<Planet> Values
                yield return MERCURY;
                yield return VENUS;
                yield return EARTH;
                yield return MARS;
                yield return JUPITER;
                yield return SATURN;
                yield return URANUS;
                yield return NEPTUNE;
                yield return PLUTO;

        private readonly string name;
        private readonly double mass;   // in kilograms
        private readonly double radius; // in meters

        Planet(string name, double mass, double radius)
            this.name = name;
            this.mass = mass;
            this.radius = radius;

        public string Name { get { return name; } }

        public double Mass { get { return mass; } }

        public double Radius { get { return radius; } }

        // universal gravitational constant  (m3 kg-1 s-2)
        public const double G = 6.67300E-11;

        public double SurfaceGravity()
            return G * mass / (radius * radius);

        public double SurfaceWeight(double otherMass)
            return otherMass * SurfaceGravity();

        public override string ToString()
            return name;