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String Parsing Class (supports quoted strings)

, 14 Mar 2002 161.2K 1.2K 44
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Parse strings with specified delimiter and specified quote character
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    How many times have you wanted to parse a string and had to re-write a little function here or there to extract what you want? This class is exactly what you've been waiting for.

    How To Use CQStringParser

    Add the following include:

    #include "QStringParser.h"
    And where it's needed, do something like this (I used this code to test the class):
        CString sTest = "abc,def,\"efg,hij\",klm,nop,\"qrstuv\",wxyz";
        CQStringParser p(sTest, ',', '\"');
        CString sBuffer = "";
        int nCount = p.GetCount();
        if (nCount > 0)
            for (int i = 1; i <= nCount; i++)
                sBuffer += (p.GetField(i) + CString("\n"));
    	CString sTemp;
    	int nElement;
    	sTemp = p.Find("efg", &nElement);
    	if (nElement > 0)
    	    sBuffer.Format("Found string - %s", sTemp);
    	    AfxMessageBox("No matching string found ('efg').");
    	sTemp = p.FindExact("abc",&nElement);
    	if (nElement > 0)
    	    sBuffer.Format("Found string - %s", sTemp);
    	    AfxMessageBox("No exactly matching string found ('efg').");
            AfxMessageBox("No strings parsed.");

    You can (of course) easily create an array of CQStringParser objects if needed, and read in an entire delimited file before processing the parsed strings. Alternatively, you can use the same object over and over again with different strings.

    The parsed fields begin at element #1 because I store the original string in element 0.

    How To Use CQStdStringParser

    Add the following include:

    #include "QStdStringParser.h"

    And where it's needed, do something like this (I used this code to test the class):

        std::string sTest = "abc,def,\"efg,hij\",klm,nop,\"qrstuv\",wxyz";
        CQStdStringParser p(sTest, ',', '\"');

    The strings being passed into the class and retrieved from the class are of type std:string, but other than that, the class functions identically to its MFC-specific cousin (which works with CStrings).


    06 May 2001 - As I use my classes they mature and grow, and CQStringParser is no exception. In this iteration, I've simplified the code by eliminating the overloaded constructor and parsing functions. I've also added new functionality. You can now Add, Set (change), Insert, and Delete fields from the parsed string. The demo (link at top this article) includes a simple dialog-based application which allows you to play around with the primary functionality of the class. As usual, the class is fully documented. Have a ball.

    10 August 2001 - I recently had reason to need the use of this class in a NON-MFC evnironment, and in order to facilitate this requirement, I created a new version of the class that uses STL instead of the MFC collection classes. The demo program now contains both the CQStringParser class, as well as the CQStdStringParser class. The only externally obvious difference is that the strings you pass in and get back are of type std::string instead of CString. The method names and class functionality are otherwise identical to the original class.

    15 March 2002 - Fixed a parsing bug in the string parser classes, and changed the sample app to allow you to change the quote and/or delimiter character in the dialog box.


    This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

    A list of licenses authors might use can be found here


    About the Author

    John Simmons / outlaw programmer
    Software Developer (Senior)
    United States United States
    I've been paid as a programmer since 1982 with experience in Pascal, and C++ (both self-taught), and began writing Windows programs in 1991 using Visual C++ and MFC. In the 2nd half of 2007, I started writing C# Windows Forms and ASP.Net applications, and have since done WPF, Silverlight, WCF, web services, and Windows services.

    My weakest point is that my moments of clarity are too brief to hold a meaningful conversation that requires more than 30 seconds to complete. Thankfully, grunts of agreement are all that is required to conduct most discussions without committing to any particular belief system.

    You may also be interested in...

    Comments and Discussions

    GeneralRe: Nice, but... Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer30-May-02 13:22
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer30-May-02 13:22 
    GeneralRe: Nice, but... Pin
    supertedusa30-May-02 14:06
    membersupertedusa30-May-02 14:06 
    GeneralRe: Nice, but... Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer31-Jul-07 5:09
    mvpJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer31-Jul-07 5:09 
    I created a new article for a C# version of this class. It supports delimiter strings.[^]

    "Why don't you tie a kerosene-soaked rag around your ankles so the ants won't climb up and eat your candy ass..." - Dale Earnhardt, 1997
    "...the staggering layers of obscenity in your statement make it a work of art on so many levels." - Jason Jystad, 10/26/2001

    GeneralWow - a Linux Guy Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer15-Mar-02 3:52
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer15-Mar-02 3:52 
    GeneralBugs present Pin
    Anonymous11-Mar-02 3:20
    memberAnonymous11-Mar-02 3:20 
    GeneralRe: Bugs present Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer15-Mar-02 2:48
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer15-Mar-02 2:48 
    GeneralExcellent Pin
    Thomas George27-Oct-01 7:56
    memberThomas George27-Oct-01 7:56 
    GeneralRe: Excellent Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer28-Nov-01 7:03
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer28-Nov-01 7:03 
    GeneralNeed help please Pin
    Anonymous3-Sep-01 15:16
    memberAnonymous3-Sep-01 15:16 
    GeneralRe: Need help please Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer14-Oct-01 4:46
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer14-Oct-01 4:46 
    QuestionHow delimiter is also string (e.g.. @$)?? Pin
    Anonymous27-Aug-01 13:07
    memberAnonymous27-Aug-01 13:07 
    AnswerRe: How delimiter is also string (e.g.. @$)?? Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer14-Oct-01 4:45
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer14-Oct-01 4:45 
    GeneralRe: How delimiter is also string (e.g.. @$)?? Pin
    Anonymous15-Oct-01 3:45
    memberAnonymous15-Oct-01 3:45 
    GeneralRe: How delimiter is also string (e.g.. @$)?? Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer15-Oct-01 3:47
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer15-Oct-01 3:47 
    QuestionAnyone Interested in non-MFC version? Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer7-Aug-01 9:24
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer7-Aug-01 9:24 
    AnswerRe: Anyone Interested in non-MFC version? Pin
    Anonymous10-Aug-01 19:56
    memberAnonymous10-Aug-01 19:56 
    GeneralRe: Anyone Interested in non-MFC version? Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer11-Aug-01 0:58
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer11-Aug-01 0:58 
    GeneralFound a problem when parsing empty strings Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer21-May-01 3:28
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer21-May-01 3:28 
    GeneralParse with quotes Pin
    hearties17-May-01 23:23
    memberhearties17-May-01 23:23 
    GeneralRe: Parse with quotes Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer18-May-01 0:24
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer18-May-01 0:24 
    GeneralRe: Parse with quotes - Debug Assertion Failed" Pin
    Anonymous14-Aug-01 8:53
    memberAnonymous14-Aug-01 8:53 
    GeneralAdded Functionality Pin
    John Simmons / outlaw programmer6-May-01 6:05
    memberJohn Simmons / outlaw programmer6-May-01 6:05 
    GeneralBug in ParseStringWithQuoter() Pin
    Pascal Dimassimo1-May-01 6:02
    memberPascal Dimassimo1-May-01 6:02 
    GeneralThe 'all in one' solution Pin
    Remon14-Apr-01 4:51
    memberRemon14-Apr-01 4:51 
    GeneralProblem with quoted strings Pin
    Helge Opgard6-Mar-01 22:09
    memberHelge Opgard6-Mar-01 22:09 

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