Home » Test if string is a guid without throwing exceptions?

Test if string is a guid without throwing exceptions?


Performance Benchmarks

Catch exception:
   10,000 good:    63,668 ticks
   10,000 bad:  6,435,609 ticks

Regex Pre-Screen:
   10,000 good:   637,633 ticks
   10,000 bad:    717,894 ticks

COM Interop CLSIDFromString
   10,000 good:   126,120 ticks
   10,000 bad:     23,134 ticks

COM Intertop (Fastest) Answer:

/// <summary>
/// Attempts to convert a string to a guid.
/// </summary>
/// <param name="s">The string to try to convert</param>
/// <param name="value">Upon return will contain the Guid</param>
/// <returns>Returns true if successful, otherwise false</returns>
public static Boolean TryStrToGuid(String s, out Guid value)
   //ClsidFromString returns the empty guid for null strings   
   if ((s == null) || (s == ""))   
      value = Guid.Empty;      
      return false;   

   int hresult = PInvoke.ObjBase.CLSIDFromString(s, out value);
   if (hresult >= 0)
      return true;
      value = Guid.Empty;
      return false;

namespace PInvoke
    class ObjBase
        /// <summary>
        /// This function converts a string generated by the StringFromCLSID function back into the original class identifier.
        /// </summary>
        /// <param name="sz">String that represents the class identifier</param>
        /// <param name="clsid">On return will contain the class identifier</param>
        /// <returns>
        /// Positive or zero if class identifier was obtained successfully
        /// Negative if the call failed
        /// </returns>
        [DllImport("ole32.dll", CharSet = CharSet.Unicode, ExactSpelling = true, PreserveSig = true)]
        public static extern int CLSIDFromString(string sz, out Guid clsid);

Bottom line: If you need to check if a string is a guid, and you care about performance, use COM Interop.

If you need to convert a guid in String representation to a Guid, use

new Guid(someString);

Once .net 4.0 is available you can use Guid.TryParse().

You’re not going to like this but what makes you think that catching the exception is going to be slower?

How many failed attempts to parse a GUID are you expecting in comparison with successful ones?

My advice is use the function you’ve just created and profile your code. If you find that this function is truely a hotspot then fix it but not before.

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