Boris Callens Boris Callens - 1 month ago 6
C# Question

Enum ToString with user friendly strings

My enum consists of the following values:

private enum PublishStatusses{
NotCompleted,
Completed,
Error
};


I want to be able to output these values in a user friendly way though.

I don't need to be able to go from string to value again.

Answer

I use the Description attribute from the System.ComponentModel namespace. Simply decorate the enum:

private enum PublishStatusValue
{
    [Description("Not Completed")]
    NotCompleted,
    Completed,
    Error
};

Then use this code to retrieve it:

public static string GetDescription<T>(this T enumerationValue)
    where T : struct
{
    Type type = enumerationValue.GetType();
    if (!type.IsEnum)
    {
        throw new ArgumentException("EnumerationValue must be of Enum type", "enumerationValue");
    }

    //Tries to find a DescriptionAttribute for a potential friendly name
    //for the enum
    MemberInfo[] memberInfo = type.GetMember(enumerationValue.ToString());
    if (memberInfo != null && memberInfo.Length > 0)
    {
        object[] attrs = memberInfo[0].GetCustomAttributes(typeof(DescriptionAttribute), false);

        if (attrs != null && attrs.Length > 0)
        {
            //Pull out the description value
            return ((DescriptionAttribute)attrs[0]).Description;
        }
    }
    //If we have no description attribute, just return the ToString of the enum
    return enumerationValue.ToString();
}
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