Most elegant XML serialization of Color structure

One problem bugged me enough to register on Stack Overflow. Currently if I want to serialize Color to XML string as named color, or #rrggbb, or #aarrggbb, I do it like this:

[XmlIgnore()]
public Color color;

[XmlElement(ElementName = "Color")]
public String color_XmlSurrogate
{
  get { return MyColorConverter.SetColor(color); }
  set { color = MyColorConverter.GetColor(value); }
}

Here MyColorConverter does serialization just the way I like it. But all this feels like a kludge, with additional field and all. Is there a way to make it work in less lines, maybe connecting TypeDescriptor with C# attributes related to XML?

Here's something I'm using for serializing the Color struct in XML. It's better than shadowing the primary Color property in my opinion. Any suggestions welcome.

The XmlColor class relies primarily on the implicit operator language feature to provide the key data tranformations. Without this, the class is basically useless. Other bits of functionality were added to round out the class.

The XmlColor helper also provides a convenient way to separate color components. I added the Alpha property to show this. Notice the Alpha component won't be serialized if it's cranked all the way up to 255.

Deserializing the Web color value combines the Alpha value currently stored in the instance. The order in which the attributes are parsed shouldn't matter. If the Alpha attribute is missing in the XML source, the instance component value will be used to set the Alpha level. This is arguably faulty; however, in the case of XML serialization, the XmlColor class will initialized with Color.Black setting the Alpha to 255.

I'm working out of the VS2010 environment and building against .Net 4. I have no idea how compatible the code is with previous versions.

Here's an example property that should be serialized to XML:

    [XmlElement(Type=typeof(XmlColor))]
    public Color MyColor { get; set; }

Here's the XmlColor helper class:

public class XmlColor
{
    private Color color_ = Color.Black;

    public XmlColor() {}
    public XmlColor(Color c) { color_ = c; }


    public Color ToColor()
    {
        return color_;
    }

    public void FromColor(Color c)
    {
        color_ = c;
    }

    public static implicit operator Color(XmlColor x)
    {
        return x.ToColor();
    }

    public static implicit operator XmlColor(Color c)
    {
        return new XmlColor(c);
    }

    [XmlAttribute]
    public string Web
    {
        get { return ColorTranslator.ToHtml(color_); }
        set {
            try
            {
                if (Alpha == 0xFF) // preserve named color value if possible
                    color_ = ColorTranslator.FromHtml(value);
                else
                    color_ = Color.FromArgb(Alpha, ColorTranslator.FromHtml(value));
            }
            catch(Exception)
            {
                color_ = Color.Black;
            }
        }
    }

    [XmlAttribute]
    public byte Alpha
    {
        get { return color_.A; }
        set { 
            if (value != color_.A) // avoid hammering named color if no alpha change
                color_ = Color.FromArgb(value, color_); 
        }
    }

    public bool ShouldSerializeAlpha() { return Alpha < 0xFF; }
}

Metadata Standards and Web Services in Libraries, Archives, and , attributes to the elements to, for example, change font size, type, or color. Originally, the data returned from the server used XML format. We will talk more about this serialization format later in this chapter. Web browsers, on the other hand, implement document fault tolerance and graceful degradation—rendering​  Here's something I'm using for serializing the Color struct in XML. It's better than shadowing the primary Color property in my opinion. Any suggestions welcome. The XmlColor class relies primarily on the implicit operator language feature to provide the key data tranformations.

I believe below I have an easier solution to that. Color serialization is ignored and color is saved and loaded as simple 32-bit ARGB data.

[XmlIgnore]
public Color BackColor { get; set; }

[XmlElement("BackColor")]
public int BackColorAsArgb
{
    get { return BackColor.ToArgb();  }
    set { BackColor = Color.FromArgb(value); }
}

.NET XML Serialization - A Settings Class, The XmlSerializer class does most of the work needed for saving the data With that code, it is now possible serialize a Color object as a string  Examples of XML Serialization. 03/30/2017; 15 minutes to read +8; In this article. XML serialization can take more than one form, from simple to complex. For example, you can serialize a class that simply consists of public fields and properties, as shown in Introducing XML Serialization. The following code examples address various advanced

XmlSerializer Class (System.Xml.Serialization), Serializes and deserializes objects into and from XML documents. The XmlSerializer enables you to control how objects are encoded into XML. For more details, see the XmlAttributeOverrides class and How to: Control Serialization of  I am serializing an array of Color[]. Assigning some values of Color to it at the time of serializing. ColorList = new Color[] { Color.Red, Color.Blue, Color.Black, Color.Yellow }; At the time of

Since this is my first question here I decided to investigate it more. @bvj gave an excellent answer. I tweaked his code, so here it is. XmlColor class is changed so that the serialized string goes in text of the tag, and there are public static functions if string should be serialized as XML attribute instead of tag. Attributes unfortunately still must be serialized with surrogate fields, but please correct me if I'm wrong. Using the class:

// Color as tag
[XmlElement(Type = typeof(XmlColor))]
public Color ColorAsTag { get; set; }

// Color as attribute
[XmlIgnore]
public Color ColorAsAttribute { get; set; }

[XmlAttribute("ColorAsAttribute")]
public string ColorAsAttribute_XmlSurrogate
{
    get { return XmlColor.FromColor(ColorAsAttribute); }
    set { ColorAsAttribute = XmlColor.ToColor(value); }
}

The class that makes it happen:

public class XmlColor
{
    private Color color_ = Color.Black;

    public XmlColor() { }
    public XmlColor(Color c) { color_ = c; }


    public static implicit operator Color(XmlColor x)
    {
        return x.color_;
    }

    public static implicit operator XmlColor(Color c)
    {
        return new XmlColor(c);
    }

    public static string FromColor(Color color)
    {
        if (color.IsNamedColor)
            return color.Name;

        int colorValue = color.ToArgb();

        if (((uint)colorValue >> 24) == 0xFF)
            return String.Format("#{0:X6}", colorValue & 0x00FFFFFF);
        else
            return String.Format("#{0:X8}", colorValue);
    }

    public static Color ToColor(string value)
    {
        try
        {
            if (value[0] == '#')
            {
                return Color.FromArgb((value.Length <= 7 ? unchecked((int)0xFF000000) : 0) +
                    Int32.Parse(value.Substring(1), System.Globalization.NumberStyles.HexNumber));
            }
            else
            {
                return Color.FromName(value);
            }
        }
        catch (Exception)
        {
        }

        return Color.Black;
    }

    [XmlText]
    public string Default
    {
        get { return FromColor(color_); }
        set { color_ = ToColor(value); }
    }
}

IXmlSerializable, Yeah, I know, this is yet another article about XML serialization. There are many confusing things regarding the implementation of the I must say I did not find any elegant way of handling the deserialization of empty elements. Many .​NET data structures cannot be serialized (only ICollection and  Introduction. The article talks about serialization of objects in XML format and deserialization of an XML file back to an object. Serialization is a process by which an object's state is transformed in some serial data format, such as XML or binary format.

I have found another solution,

It is possible to use System.Windows.Media.Color instead of System.Drawing.Color. It is serializable to XML.

HTML Standard, More approachable tutorials and authoring guides can provide a gentler introduction no new features except the new serialization, and which was completed in 2000. For example, changing the color of a site that uses <font color=""> throughout In the context of the DOM structures, the terms HTML document and XML  XML serialization serializes only the public fields and property values of an object into an XML stream. XML serialization does not include type information. For example, if you have a Book object that exists in the Library namespace, there is no guarantee that it is deserialized into an object of the same type.

c# - XmlCodeExporter e tipi nullable, xml xml-serialization. I want to create a custom XML structure as follows: serialization in Java? [closed] · Most elegant XML serialization of Color structure​  My previous article XML Serialization and Deserialization (Part-1) talks about serialization of objects to XML form. In this article, we will discuss about "Deserialization of XML" back to object form. Deserialization is used to convert bytes of data, such as XML or binary data, to "Object" type. An XML file can be reconverted back to an Object

Code Editor, public static string SerializeToXml(object obj); {; XmlSerializer serializer = new [​closed] · Most elegant XML serialization of Color structure · Xml Serialization  @ChrisWue In my office we use xml serialization when we want human-readable output; serializing a timespan as a long isn't quite compatible with that goal. If you use xml serialization for a different reason, of course, serializing the ticks might make more sense. – phoog Jan 18 '13 at 15:26

How do I Set XmlArrayItem Element name for a List<Custom , What you would see in the file would be a long int value that represents the 4 bytes that define the color. It is not elegant for display of XML in a text editor but so what, we aren't suppose to be editing XML directly anyway. It still parses back as a color object per the XML specification so I see no reason to waste any more effort on it.

Comments
  • I think you have reached the limits of XML serialization. You might want to look into DataContract serialization instead,
  • I like this! If it works, that is. I use VS2008 with .NET 3.5, so I would need to check this out some time in the future. Is there a reason to use ToColor/FromColor instead of some Color property? Can this be recoded to have just one xml string as serialized value? I would like this to be the result: <Color>#aarrggbb</Color>
  • You could strip the class down to the implicit operators and a single publishable property. How that property gets serialized is totally up to you. I noticed calling on the Argb methods results in hex strings regardless of the alpha value. I chose XmlAttribute to avoid child elements. You might consider an "ARGB" XmlAttribute and coerce the 4 component hex strings by utilizing the Argb methods. No doubt you could squeeze in a Color property if you find it helpful.
  • @bvj, Too bad I can't give you a bounty for this one :)
  • This is genius. Now I only have to add a [XmlElement(Type=typeof(XmlColor))] attribute on my code. Really the most elegant solution.
  • If you are working with WPF colors (or convert your WinForms colors over to WPF), the auto-serialization will work, but it's kind of ugly (giving you one XML element of A, R, G, B, ScA, ScR, ScG and ScB each). But with a slightly modified version of bvj's solution, you can get a nicer output by simply replacing ColorTranslator.ToHtml() with color_.ToString() and ColorTranslator.FromHtml() with ColorConverter.FromString(). The result will be stored in the form "#FF000000", so you don't even need to deal with a separate Alpha value.
  • This solution still suffers from the problem that I wanted to avoid, which is surrogate property.
  • I am curious for what reasons you want to avoid the "surrogate property"?
  • He may be unaware that every property has an (internal) field to hold the actual data.
  • I tried it and for one color value I got several tags over which I have no control. That's no serialization the way I want it.
  • @Dialecticus, please explain.
  • for color (A=123, R=45, G=67, B=89) this is the result of serialization: <Color><A>123</A><R>45</R><G>67</G><B>89</B><ScA>0.482352942</ScA><ScR>0.0262412224</ScR><ScG>0.0561284944</ScG><ScB>0.09989873</ScB></Color>. What I want as result is <Color>#7B2D4359</Color>. And besides, I really need GDI color, not media color, because that's the structure I'm working with.
  • @Dialecticus, Ok, I understand what you mean. But for some purposes it can be fine.