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Bit wise operations in C#

, 6 Nov 2001
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Using bitwise operators in C#

Introduction

C# has lots of flexibility over manipulating with bits. Before I start explaining about bit wise manipulation I would like to give some inputs on binary operations.

Binary numbers

With only two symbols you can represent any type of information you want, these symbols can be {a,b}, {0,1} or the {beep, beeeep} of the Morse code. When you want to work with boolean (1) expressions or place multiple values in a single byte (group of 8 bit), it is more convenient for you to represent these bytes as binary numbers.

Binary numbers are specifically required to build bit-masks, used with boolean operators (AND, OR, XOR, NOT). In other words, 235 is the addition of 128+64+32+8+2+1. Binary numbers seem to be very long numbers, but they are much easier for a computer to handle since each bit, or binary digit can be represented by an electrical signal which is either on of off


128

64

32

16

8

4

2

1

1

1

0

1

0


Using the above table you can see that the decimal number 11010 is equal to 26 in the decimal system. (16+8+2=26) - Use the base checker at the top to turn 26 into binary if you want to check.

Using binary notation is a very good exercise for Numerical Hour since the principles can be quickly taught - also some very interesting math’s can be done quickly - e.g.

To half any number - simply move the digits 1 place to the right: 101100 = 44 , 10110=22
(what happens if their is a fractional part - Can you make a rule?)

To double a number - simply add a zero on the end: 1111 = 15, 11110 = 30

Some of the important binary operations, which I am going to discuss, are following:

  • AND operation
  • OR operation
  • Shift operations

As we know in binary all 1’s are true and 0’s are considered to be false.

When AND operations is done on the binary value following are the results of AND.

Following is the truth table for AND operation.


A

B

AND

0 (false)

0(false)

0 (false)

1 (True)

0(false)

0 (false)

0(false)

1(True)

0 (false)

1(True)

1(True)

1 (True)


*When using AND operation it gives True only when both the values are True.

In C# to implement the AND operation using ‘&’ Operator.

Now let's see e first program

Program 1

using System;
 
class MyClass {
         public static void Main() {
                
         byte varA=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
         byte varB=20;// binary equivalent for 20 is 10100
         long result=varA & varB; // AND operation result should be 00000
         Console.WriteLine("{0}  AND  {1} Result :{2}",varA,varB,result);
 
                
         varA=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
         varB=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
         result=varA & varB; // AND operation result should be 01010 
         //so the result will contain 10 in decimal
         Console.WriteLine("{0}  AND  {1} Result : {2}",varA,varB,result);
     
         }
}

Program Output:

C:\csharp\progs>bitprg1
10  AND  20 Result :0
10  AND  10 Result : 10  

When OR operations is done on the binary value following are the results of OR.

Following is the truth table for AND operation.


A

B

OR

0 (false)

0(false)

0 (false)

1 (True)

0(false)

1 (True)

0(false)

1(True)

1 (True)

1(True)

1(True)

1 (True)


*When using OR operation it gives FALSE only when both the values are FALSE. In all other cases OR operation gives true.

In C# to implement the OR operation using ‘|’ Operator.

Now let's see e first program

Program 2

using System;
 
class MyClass {
         public static void Main() {
                
          byte varA=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
          byte varB=20;// binary equivalent for 20 is 10100
          long result=varA | varB; // OR operation result should be 11110
          //so the result will contain 30 in decimal
          Console.WriteLine("{0}  OR  {1} Result :{2}",varA,varB,result);
 
                
         varA=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
         varB=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
         result=varA | varB; // OR operation result should be 01010 
         //so the result will contain 10 in decimal
         Console.WriteLine("{0}  OR  {1} Result : {2}",varA,varB,result);
 
          
         }
}

Program output:

C:\csharp\progs>bitprg2
10  OR  20 Result :30
10  OR  10 Result : 10  

There are two kinds of Shift operations on Right Shift and Left Shift.

  • Right Shift operation is used for shifting the bits positions towards right side.
  • Left Shift operation is used for shifting the bits positions towards left side.

When RightShift operations are done on a binary value the bits are shifted to one position towards right side.

Let’s take a example:

The binary equivalent for the decimal value 10 is 1010.So when Right Shift operation is done this value. The all the bits will move one position towards right so the right most bits will be truncated and left most bits is filled with zero.

1010 when shifted to right one position its value will be 0101

So the decimal equivalent for 0101 is 5. This means when decimal value 10 shifted to right one position its value is reduced to 5.

In C# to implement the Right shift operation using ‘>>’ Operator.

Now let's see e first program

Program 3

using System;
 
class MyClass {
         public static void Main() {
                
        byte varA=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
        long result=varA >> 1; // Right Shift operation result should be 0101
        //so the result will contain 5 in decimal
        Console.WriteLine("{0} is Right Shifted to 1 position Result :{1}",
            varA,result);
                   
          }
}

Program output:

C:\csharp\progs>bitprg3
10 is Right Shifted to 1 position Result :5

When LeftShift operations are done on a binary value the bits are shifted to one position towards left side.

Let’s take an example:

The binary equivalent for the decimal value 10 is 1010.

So when left Shift operation is done this value. The all the bits will move one position towards left so the left most bit will be truncated and right most bit is filled with zero.1010 when shifted to right one positions its value will be 10100.

So the decimal equivalent for 10100 is 20. This means when decimal value 10 shifted to left one position its value is increased to 20.

In C# to implement the Left shift operation using ‘<<’ Operator.

Now let's see e first program

Program 4

using System;
 
class MyClass {
         public static void Main() {
                
      byte varA=10;// binary equivalent for 10 is 01010
      long result=varA << 1; // Left Shift operation result should be 10100
      //so the result will contain 20 in decimal
     Console.WriteLine("{0} is Left Shifted to 1 position Result :{1}",
            varA,result);
                   
          
         }
}

Program output:

C:\csharp\progs>bitprg4
10 is Left Shifted to 1 position Result :20

Further reading

  • .NET More information on .NET technologies

License

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A list of licenses authors might use can be found here

About the Author

Chandra Hundigam
Architect
United States United States
Chandra Hundigam has Master degree in Computer Application, Microsoft Certified Professional and Software Architect. He's significantly involved in enterprise application development and distributed object oriented system development using Microsoft .Net, Sun Java/J2EE technology to serve global giants in the Media, Finance, Mortgage and Software Industries.Presently working as Independent Software Consultant for a US-based company.His areas of interests are in emerging Technologies.

Comments and Discussions

 
QuestionMy vote of 5 Pinmemberrtz874-Feb-14 23:33 
GeneralMy vote of 5 PinprofessionalInnocent9109-Sep-13 1:24 
GeneralMy vote of 5 PinmemberTerry4729720-Jun-13 17:38 
GeneralMy vote of 3 PinmemberGuziec8717-Jun-13 9:07 
GeneralMy vote of 5 Pinmemberjuxrummy28-Mar-13 5:15 
GeneralThis info was really helpfull for me Pinmemberyytg1-Nov-12 5:02 
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Questionhow to write these individual bits to a file?? Pinmemberappliprog16-Oct-05 8:51 
AnswerRe: how to write these individual bits to a file?? PinmemberScott Bruno5-Apr-14 18:43 
QuestionHow about display in binary... Pinmemberchal_adiera13-Apr-05 19:35 
AnswerRe: How about display in binary... PinmemberMSA54200018-May-06 3:49 
Generalpigeon english PinsussAnonymous29-Nov-04 3:18 
GeneralRe: pigeon english PinsussAnonymous18-Mar-05 20:33 
GeneralRe: pigeon english Pinmembersdfgasdfsfgsdfg18-Mar-07 16:31 
GeneralAdd extra Pinmemberserup6-Jul-04 1:27 
GeneralBitwise operations in C# PinmemberVoidPointer8-Apr-04 12:04 
QuestionWhat next? PinmemberTomasz Sowinski7-Nov-01 8:00 
AnswerRe: What next? PinmemberNemanja Trifunovic7-Nov-01 8:22 
GeneralRe: What next? [modified] PinmemberFazlul Kabir7-Nov-01 8:31 
GeneralRe: What next? PinmemberTomasz Sowinski7-Nov-01 8:38 
GeneralRe: What next? PinsussAnonymous20-Oct-02 10:17 
GeneralRe: What next? PinsussAnonymous20-Apr-05 6:13 
GeneralOf Power Switches and Social Ineptitude PinmemberSoftware_Architect9-May-05 19:23 
AnswerRe: What next? PinmemberAnonymous25-Mar-02 21:13 
GeneralRe: What next? PinsussAnonymous19-Oct-03 17:37 
QuestionXOR? PinmemberJörgen Sigvardsson7-Nov-01 4:56 
AnswerRe: XOR? PinmemberSoliant26-Aug-02 22:43 
AnswerRe: XOR? PinmemberŞafak Gür20-Dec-12 5:40 

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