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by Jiří {x2} Činčura

Checking whether the type is a tuple (ValueTuple)

27 Mar 2017 2 mins .NET, C#

Continuing with my tuples (ValueTuple<...> to be precise) exploration in C# I was in a need to check whether the type is a “tuple”. The (T, T, T, ...) in C#. You can create ValueTuple<...> yourself manually, but you can also create something that’s not a tuple – compiler wouldn’t do it that way.

For example ValueTuple<int, int, int, int, int, int, int, int> compiles fine, but the 8th element (TRest) should be another ValueTuple<int>. Similarly also plain int isn’t a tuple, obviously.

So I wrote a small helper for myself.

public static bool IsTuple(Type tuple)
	if (!tuple.IsGenericType)
		return false;
	var openType = tuple.GetGenericTypeDefinition();
	return openType == typeof(ValueTuple<>)
		|| openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,>)
		|| openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,,>)
		|| openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,,,>)
		|| openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,,,,>)
		|| openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,,,,,>)
		|| openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,,,,,,>)
		|| (openType == typeof(ValueTuple<,,,,,,,>) && IsTuple(tuple.GetGenericArguments()[7]));

To be touch bit sure it works as it should, here’s some tests (using NUnit).

[TestCase(typeof((int, int)), ExpectedResult = true)]
[TestCase(typeof((int, int, string, string, int, int, string, string, int, int)), ExpectedResult = true)]
[TestCase(typeof(int), ExpectedResult = false)]
[TestCase(typeof(ValueTuple<int, int, int, int, int, int, int, int>), ExpectedResult = false)]
[TestCase(typeof(ValueTuple<int, int, int, int, int, int, int, ValueTuple<string, string>>), ExpectedResult = true)]
public bool IsTupleTest(Type tuple)
	return TupleHelper.IsTuple(tuple);

There’s one small catch, though. You can’t really create a ValueTuple<T> (on a top level) using C# (T) syntax, because for the compiler the ( and ) are just plain parentheses, but I consider that for me as a valid tuple anyway.

Profile Picture Jiří Činčura is .NET, C# and Firebird expert. He focuses on data and business layers, language constructs, parallelism, databases and performance. For almost two decades he contributes to open-source, i.e. FirebirdClient. He works as a senior software engineer for Microsoft. Frequent speaker and blogger at