C# Records

C# records are a new way of defining reference types that use value equality. They're very helpful when you need an immutable data type, saving you from having to write readonly properties and overriding a bunch of equality methods.

For example, here's an immutable class definition with value equality and a nicely formatted string output:

public class TeamClass
    private readonly string _name;
    private readonly int _yearFormed;
    public TeamClass(string name, int yearFormed)
        => (_name, _yearFormed) = (name, yearFormed);

    public string Name => _name;
    public int YearFormed => _yearFormed;

    public override string ToString() => $"TeamClass {{ Name = {Name}, YearFormed = {YearFormed} }}";

    public override bool Equals(object obj)
        return obj is TeamClass otherTeam 
            && Name == otherTeam.Name 
            && YearFormed == otherTeam.YearFormed;

    public override int GetHashCode() => ToString().GetHashCode();

    public static bool operator ==(TeamClass tc1, TeamClass tc2)
        => tc1.Equals(tc2);

    public static bool operator !=(TeamClass tc1, TeamClass tc2)
        => !tc1.Equals(tc2);

And here's the same functionality with a record:

public record TeamRecord(string TeamName, int YearFormed);

See the results with this code:

using System;

var team1 = new TeamClass("Team1", 1999);
var team2 = new TeamClass("Team1", 1999);

Console.WriteLine(team1 == team2);

var team3 = new TeamRecord("Team1", 1999);
var team4 = new TeamRecord("Team1", 1999);

Console.WriteLine(team3 == team4);

View code on GitHub


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