Convert CSV string to string[]

0 votes
asked Sep 16, 2008 by col

Is there an easy way to convert a string from csv format into a string[] or list?

I can guarantee that there are no commas in the data.

16 Answers

0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2008 by john-sheehan-runscop

Get a string[] of all the lines:

string[] lines = System.IO.File.ReadAllLines("yourfile.csv");

Then loop through and split those lines (this error prone because it doesn't check for commas in quote-delimited fields):

foreach (string line in lines)
    string[] items = line.Split({','}};
0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2008 by paul-van-brenk
separationChar[] = {';'}; // or '\t' ',' etc.
var strArray = strCSV.Split(separationChar);
0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2008 by bob-king
string s = "1,2,3,4,5";

string myStrings[] = s.Split({','}};

Note that Split() takes an array of characters to split on.

0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2008 by ryan-steckler
string[] splitStrings = myCsv.Split(",".ToCharArray());
0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2008 by sam

Some CSV files have double quotes around the values along with a comma. Therefore sometimes you can split on this string literal: ","

0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2008 by claco

A Csv file with Quoted fields, is not a Csv file. Far more things (Excel) output without quotes rather than with quotes when you select "Csv" in a save as.

If you want one you can use, free, or commit to, here's mine that also does IDataReader/Record. It also uses DataTable to define/convert/enforce columns and DbNull.

It doesn't do quotes.. yet. I just tossed it together a few days ago to scratch an itch.

Forgotten Semicolon: Nice link. Thanks. cfeduke: Thanks for the tip to Microsoft.VisualBasic.FileIO.TextFieldParser. Going into CsvDataReader tonight.

0 votes
answered Jan 17, 2008 by claco updated using TextFieldParser suggested by cfeduke.

Just a few props away from exposing separators/trimspaces/type ig you just need code to steal.

0 votes
answered Jan 17, 2008 by johnopincar

I was already splitting on tabs so this did the trick for me:

public static string CsvToTabDelimited(string line) {
    var ret = new StringBuilder(line.Length);
    bool inQuotes = false;
    for (int idx = 0; idx < line.Length; idx++) {
        if (line[idx] == '"') {
            inQuotes = !inQuotes;
        } else {
            if (line[idx] == ',') {
                ret.Append(inQuotes ? ',' : '\t');
            } else {
    return ret.ToString();
0 votes
answered Sep 16, 2008 by developingchris
0 votes
answered Sep 16, 2008 by timothy-carter
string[] splitString = origString.Split(',');

(Following comment not added by original answerer) Please keep in mind that this answer addresses the SPECIFIC case where there are guaranteed to be NO commas in the data.

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